PFF Tabs Luke Joeckel as Jaguars' Worst Draft Pick Since 2006

The former No. 2 overall pick spent just a few mediocre seasons with the team, but is he truly their worst pick in the last 15 years?
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In the last 15 years, the Jacksonville Jaguars have had more drafts flameouts and busts than almost any other team in the league. From college stars who just never developed to short-term experiments that ended in failure, there has been no shortage of draft duds for the Jaguars. 

This makes it all the more surprising to see which Jaguars' first-round bust has been picked as the team's worst draft pick since 2006 by Pro Football Focus. 

In examining each team's worst overall draft pick since 2006, PFF had plenty of options to choose from when it came to the Jaguars. From Derrick Harvey to Blaine Gabbert to Justin Blackmon to Leonard Fournette, the list is seemingly endless. 

But even with those choices, PFF landed on a different failed draft pick to classify as the Jaguars' worst: 2013 No. 2 overall pick Luke Joeckel, who the Jaguars drafted to be their left tackle of the future but whose time with the team was as short as it was uninspiring. 

"The Jaguars have a ton to choose from, but this was the most significant whiff we’ve seen from them," PFF wrote. 

"While 2013 was rough for many teams, that excuse falls a little flat when you realize Lane Johnson — arguably the best right tackle of this generation — went two picks later. Joeckel would never earn a pass-blocking grade over 63.1 in his career."

There is zero questioning the fact that Joeckel was a massive bust and set the tone for what be a failed regime led by former general manager Dave Caldwell. Taking Joeckel over Johnson and a few others in that class is a massive mistake looking back. 

Regarded at the time of the draft as potentially the best prospect in the entire class, Joeckel failed to gain any footing during his NFL career. The left tackle out of Texas A&M started off as a right tackle in Jacksonville due to the presence of Eugene Monroe, and then suffered a season-ending high-ankle fracture during his first start at left tackle. Joeckel would struggle in his next two seasons before being moved to guard in 2016. A knee injury ended his season after four games, and he never played another snap for the Jaguars. 

Ultimately, the once top-rated tackle prospect played and started in 39 games out of a possible 64. He was never an even average lineman for the Jaguars, struggling at seemingly every spot they put him in, along with his struggles to stay healthy.

But with this in mind, it is hard to consider Joeckel a bigger bust than some of the Jaguars' other picks during this same span. 

Gabbert is arguably the worst first-round quarterback drafted in the last two decades, and the Jaguars took him over J.J. Watt. In 2012, the Jaguars took Blackmon at No. 5 overall. The troubled receiver faced off-field issues throughout his entire tenure, playing just 20 games for the franchise in a draft where elite defenders such as Luke Kuechly, Stephon Gilmore, and Fletcher Cox were drafted.

Then there is the Jaguars' picks after Joeckel. Blake Bortles at No. 3 over Khalil Mack -- and even over Derek Carr -- is a move that has aged horribly, even with Bortles being a small part of the team's 2017 success. Bortles never looked like a franchise quarterback and even admitted he wasn't a natural-thrower of the ball, which seems problematic at the quarterback position. 

And perhaps the worst of them all was taking running back Leonard Fournete at No. 4 overall in 2017, selecting him over Deshaun Watson and Patrick Mahomes even when the Jaguars had a massive need at quarterback. Taking a running back in the top-5 is bad enough, but taking one instead of a quarterback is ludicrous. To make matters worse, Fournette was a an running back throughout his tenure in Jacksonville and lasted just three seasons with the team.

Joeckel was a bad pick for a lot of reasons. It was a pick that many even judged harshly back then. But he is not the worst pick the Jaguars have made since 2006. The problem is, the Jaguars have simply too many choices to pick from.