Life comes at your fast in the NFL. It wasn't long ago that the Jaguars won an AFC South title and beat the Los Angeles Chargers in an exciting wild card matchup in the playoffs. One season later, Jacksonville finished 9-8 and missed the playoffs. The AFC South is in a state of flux with Houston in pole position after an incredible 2023 draft class that netted them a franchise QB and elite edge rusher. The Colts are excited about year two of Anthony Richardson and Tennessee is loading up to make a push in Brian Callahan's first year as head coach.

Suddenly, it doesn't seem like the Jaguars are running the AFC South anymore.

The 2024 NFL Draft could change all of that. Or at least put the Jaguars in better position to compete in 2024.

The Jacksonville Jaguars own the following picks in the 2024 NFL Draft:

  • First round (#17 overall)
  • Second round (#48 overall)
  • Third round (#96 overall) compensatory pick
  • Fourth round (#114 overall)
  • Fourth round (#116 overall) via New Orleans
  • Fifth round (#153 overall)
  • Sixth round (#212 overall) compensatory pick
  • Seventh round (#236 overall)

The Jaguars are positioned well to make some serious additions to their roster with five picks in the top 125 selections.

However, not just anyone will fit the bill. Below we will discuss three players who the Jaguars should avoid drafting in the 2024 NFL Draft.

Laiatu Latu – DE – UCLA

National edge Laiatu Latu of UCLA (15) breaks the defensive huddle during practice for the National team at Hancock Whitney Stadium.
© Vasha Hunt-USA TODAY Sports

Edge defender Laiatu Latu is a classic boom-or-bust prospect.

There is a lot to like about Latu. He tested well at the NFL Scouting Combine in February and boasts some impressive production during his collegiate career at UCLA. However, Latu has some medical concerns that almost ended his collegiate football career.

Latu started at the University of Washington, where he played a reserve role in 2019. He did not play in the 2020 season due to a neck injury. He also did not play in 2021, as Washington's doctors would not clear him to play due to the neck injury. Many thought his football days would be over. Instead, he transferred to UCLA and became one of the most productive pass rushers in the NCAA over his final two seasons.

Injury aside, Latu does not make a ton of sense for the Jaguars because edge rusher is not a position of need for the team. Jacksonville spent the first overall pick in 2022 on Travon Walker to pair with star and former first-round pick Josh Allen. The Jaguars also recently handed Josh Allen a massive $150 million extension.

The Jaguars have clearly invested heavily at edge defender already, which makes it reasonable to question whether using a first-round pick on another edge defender is a smart move. Jacksonville would be better served letting another team take a shot on Latu and filling positions of need with their premium picks.

Jonathan Brooks – RB – Texas

Jonathon Brooks is another player with injury concerns. The Texas running back tore his ACL during a November game against TCU. He will reportedly be available at some point during training camp.

Brooks also does not fit a position of need for the Jaguars. Travis Etienne is still the alpha in Jacksonville's backfield, and the team has recently invested a third-round pick in former Auburn back Tank Bigsby.

While you might normally be able to make an argument for drafting a developmental running back in the late rounds, this year's draft class is particularly weak at the position. Unless the Jaguars absolutely fell in love with a prospect during the pre-draft process, they would be wise to avoid the position altogether in the 2024 NFL Draft.

Rome Odunze – WR – Washington

Washington Huskies wide receiver Rome Odunze (1) makes a catch during the fourth quarter against the Michigan Wolverines in the 2024 College Football Playoff national championship game at NRG Stadium.
© Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

For our purposes, Rome Odunze represents all of the top-tier wide receivers in this year's draft class.

The reason why Jacksonville should avoid the top tier of receivers this year is simply because they are projected to be picked very early in the first round. The Jaguars would have to surrender some serious draft capital to move into position for Odunze, Marvin Harrison Jr., or Malik Nabers. Thankfully, this draft class is also incredibly deep at wide receiver and the Jags will have plenty of options in the middle rounds.

Ultimately, cornerback or offensive lineman would likely be a better use of resources for the Jaguars in the first round.