Post-2021 Draft Jaguars 53-Man Roster Projection

The 2021 NFL Draft is officially over and we now know what the Jaguars will enter the season with in terms of on-field talent. With this in mind, we give our best early guesses for the team's eventual 53-man roster.
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Other than any trades or free agents the Jacksonville Jaguars bring into the building over the next few months, we now mostly know what the 2021 Jaguars' roster will look like heading into training camp in August.

From the starting quarterback down the 90th man currently on the roster, the Jaguars have completely reshaped their roster and added new players to nearly every single position. And with 15 new additions over the weekend via nine draft picks and six undrafted free agents, the Jaguars have serious competition heating up throughout the roster.

This is a way-to-early projection for how the Jaguars could enter 2021 in terms of their 53-man roster. A lot of this could change, but this is where my best guesses are in the immediate wake of the draft. 

Quarterback (3): Trevor Lawrence (R), C.J. Beathard, Gardner Minshew 

I don't think the Jaguars enter the season with two quarterbacks on the roster, but I would have given C.J. Beathard the nod over Gardner Minshew for the team's second quarterback slot since he is the more expensive quarterback to cut. Minshew is the better player, but the Jaguars have more invested in Beathard. And with the Denver Broncos, Chicago Bews, and New England all finding new quarterbacks in the last several weeks via Teddy Bridgewater, Justin Fields, and Mac Jones, it is hard to imagine Minshew has much of a trade market. As of right now, my guess for him in Jacksonville is as QB3 or bust.

Running back (4): Travis Etienne (R), James Robinson, Carlos Hyde, Dare Ogunbowale

The Jaguars could play it risky and roll with three running backs to start the season, but that is a dangerous game considering the punishment the position takes. Travis Etienne, James Robinson, and Carlos Hyde are all roster locks, with the biggest curiosity surrounding the three being how the Jaguars will opt to divide snaps and touches. If the Jaguars go into 2021 with four running backs on the roster, my guess is Dare Ogunbowale makes the team due to his special teams value.

Tight end (3): Chris Manhertz, Luke Farrell (R), James O'Shaughnessy

There appears to be a real -- if not likely -- chance of Tim Tebow joining the Jaguars' roster, and even I have a hard time envisioning Urban Meyer cutting Tebow. If he signs with the team, he will take a roster spot. But for now, Tebow isn't a part of the roster, and the Jaguars' tight end room is rather barren. Chris Manhertz and Luke Farrell are locks to make the roster as blocking tight ends, while James O'Shaughnessy is the only pass-catching tight end on the roster. Tyler Davis and Ben Ellefson are on the outside looking in for this scenario.

Wide receiver (6): DJ Chark, Laviska Shenault, Marvin Jones, Collin Johnson, Jamal Agnew, Phillip Dorsett

This is a tough one to sort out before training camp because the Jaguars have three intriguing and high-ceiling rookies in sixth-round wide receiver Jalen Camp and undrafted free agents Tim Jones and Josh Imatorbhebhe. Until we see one of those three outplay Phillip Dorsett in training camp, though, we give him the nod. I think Chark/Shenault/Jones are clear locks and Jamal Agnew can be included as one as well. Collin Johnson may have to fight for a spot himself, but he has enough talent to justify the Jaguars keeping him on the active roster in Trevor Lawrence's first season. Dorsett is the odd man out in any other scenario, but I think his track-like speed and relationships with both passing game coordinator Brian Schottenheimer and wide receivers coach Sanjay Lal give him the leg up as of today.

Offensive line (9): Cam Robinson, Andrew Norwell, Brandon Linder, A.J. Cann, Jawaan Taylor, Ben Bartch, Tyler Shatley, Walker Little (R), Will Richardson

There already wasn't much room for the Jaguars to add an offensive lineman; they returned each of their top eight linemen from a season ago, franchise-tagging Cam Robinson and re-signing Tyler Shatley. Walker Little, however, was still the No. 45 overall pick for a reason. Little is a talented left tackle prospect who will likely factor in as Robinson's backup early on in his career, but he is a lock to make the roster. If the Jaguars were to cut any of these players, fourth-year swing tackle Will Richardson would likely be the leading candidate since Little's addition negates his place on the depth chart.

Defensive line (8): Roy Robertson-Harris, Malcom Brown, Dawuane Smoot, Jay Tufele (R), DaVon Hamilton, Adam Gotsis, Doug Costin, Jihad Ward

Jihad Ward will likely play on the edge but I am including him in this group to separate him from the team's clear-cut edge rushers. With this in mind, the toughest call on this position group comes down to Doug Costin vs. Taven Bryan. Roy Robertson-Harris and Malcom Brown will start, while Dawuane Smoot, Adam Gotsis, DaVon Hamilton, and Ward all provide depth across different positions. Fourth-round rookie Jay Tufele figures to be in the mix in the rotation at three-technique, leaving a spot for Costin and Bryan to battle over. The Jaguars' staff will likely place a high value on Bryan's athletic traits, but Costin is the more versatile defender, is better against the run, and more likely than not will have a more impressive camp. Either way, this is one to watch.

Inside linebacker (5): Myles Jack, Joe Schobert, Shaquille Quarterman, Damien Wilson, Quincy Williams

The first four linebackers on this list all feel like safe bets to make the roster. Myles Jack and Joe Schobert are entrenched starters and two of the team's highest-paid players, while Damien Wilson and Shaquille Quarterman provide solid depth as traditional 3-4 inside linebackers who excel against the run. As of right now, I think Quincy Williams and his speed give him an edge as he gets a chance to make a special teams impact. He seems like he has the type of physical skill set the new staff would like to utilize, even if not as an immediate backup.

Outside linebacker/Edge defender (3): Josh Allen, K'Lavon Chaisson, Jordan Smith (R) 

Again, you could likely slot Jihad Ward in here if you wanted to. Josh Allen will play the lion's share of snaps for the Jaguars' defense this year as they transition to more of an attacking and multiple defensive scheme. He is the team's best pass-rusher and the staff is incredibly high on his future. K'Lavon Chaisson figures to slot in across from Allen on most third-downs. Jordan Smith is a raw pass-rusher with a lot of potential. The fourth-rounder could see snaps as a rotational sub-package pass-rusher as a rookie.

Cornerback (5): Shaquill Griffin, CJ Henderson, Tyson Campbell (R), Sidney Jones, Tre Herndon

If I was slotting in six cornerbacks, I likely would have put Josiah Scott into the mix since he seems like an ideal depth defender in the slot and on special teams. For now, though, I think the Jaguars roll into the season with these five cornerbacks. Shaquill Griffin, CJ Henderson, and Tyson Campbell will more or less all be starters, while Sidney Jones and Tre Herndon provide immediate depth. 

Safety (4): Jarrod Wilson, Rashawn Jenkins, Andre Cisco (R), Rudy Ford

The Jaguars could go with five safeties here, letting Andrew Wingard, Daniel Thomas, and Josh Jones all battle for the final spot. If they go with four, like in this scenario, I think Rudy Ford's top-tier special teams traits give him the best chance of the team's depth safeties to stick. Andre Cisco will likely battle Jarrod Wilson for a starting job, but the defense could have a good amount of three-safety looks as well. 

Specialists (3): Josh Lambo, Logan Cooke, Ross Matiscik

Logan Cooke signed a big contract extension this offseason and won't face any competition for a few seasons. Josh Lambo, meanwhile, will likely have to win his spot on the 53-man roster in training camp. Lambo struggled with injuries last season and the Jaguars re-signed veteran Aldrick Rosas this offseason. Lambo was 5-for-5 on field goal attempts and 8-for-10 on extra point attempts in four games last season, while Rosas was 8-for-11 on field goals and 9-for-9 on extra points in six games with the Jaguars.