Jacksonville Jaguars draft: The case for LB Nik Bonitto

The Jacksonville Jaguars need a boost in the pass-rush department.

You might’ve heard more than a few times that the Jacksonville Jaguars‘ defense isn’t very good. Although there are some players that are thriving at an individual level, the unit as a whole is struggling and is near the bottom in most defensive categories, including sacks. If they want to improve their pass rush and generate more pressure at the line of scrimmage, they should consider drafting Oklahoma linebacker Nik Bonitto.

The third-year sophomore was a force in the BIG 12 this season, logging 30 tackles, 10.5 for a loss, eight sacks, and two pass deflections. His 35 pressures rank 12th in the nation, and his quarterback pressure rate has been among the highest this season. Moreover, he’s had one of the highest Pro Football Focus pass-rush grades since 2014.

— PFF College (@PFF_College)

Oklahoma faced Iowa State in the Big 12 championship and Bonitto had a big role in the Sooners 27-21 win. The linebacker finished the game with five total tackles and one hurry. Also, by Pro Football Focus.

The Jacksonville Jaguars could use an edge rusher like Nik Bonitto.

The Jaguars will enter the offseason with plenty of needs, many of them on the defensive side of the ball. While they could target a veteran edge rusher like Justin Houston of the Indianapolis Colts or Ryan Kerrigan of the Washington Football Team in free agency, the draft will offer plenty of talented prospects such as Bonitto.

It’s uncertain what kind of defense this Jacksonville team will employ in 2021, which could make it difficult to predict what kind of players they will be adding in the offseason. Nevertheless, Bonitto offers the kind of skill set that could boost their pass-rush productivity.

The Jaguars will likely use the first overall selection (if they can keep it for the remainder of the year) on Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence, but it’s uncertain how they will use their other ten selections. It may be worth spending one on Bonitto.

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