For the second time in as many years, the Florida State Seminoles have had a player selected with a top-five pick in the NFL Draft. That happened when the Jacksonville Jaguars drafted versatile FSU defensive back Jalen Ramsey with the fifth overall pick last night in Chicago. Of course, there's the draft itself, and then there are the ubiquitous media reactions thereto; and from what we've seen so far, the Jags tapping Ramsey is roundly being praised as a fantastic decision.
Jaguars GM Dave Caldwell had to be turning cartwheels after San Diego took Bosa and Dallas took Elliott because he landed the best defensive player in the draft in Ramsey. He can play safety and corner, though it appears from comments coach Gus Bradley made last week that they plan to play Ramsey as a corner. Ramsey is an elite athlete who has safety size (6-foot-1, 209 pounds) with cornerback coverage skills. He's a perfect fit for Bradley's defense.
Sports Illustrated went a step further, giving the pick a grade of A+.
Ramsey is the top player in this year's SI 50, and Jags head coach Gus Bradley must be a bit gobsmacked by his own good luck here. What makes Ramsey special is that he's truly scheme-transcendent at multiple positionsâcornerback, safety, and slot defenderâand he'll be a force multiplier for Jacksonville's defense from the start. Jacksonville would be smart to start him off as a safety and nickel slot defender. That way, the Jags can take a year developing his CB skills and awaiting his development into the next Charles Woodson. This is a huge addition to an improving defense.
SB Nation (our parent company) gave the pick an A, one of just three that they bestowed upon first-round selections.
This had to be one of the more effortless picks in the top 10 to make. Ramsey is an NFL-ready superstar who can star at cornerback. Ramsey fits perfectly in Gus Bradley's defense thanks to his size and physicality. With Ramsey and the addition of safety Tashaun Gipson, the Jaguars now have an imposing pass defense.
NFL.com did the same.
The most emphatic endorsement of the Ramsey selection came from Big Cat Country, our sister site covering the Jags. Their grade of the pick: A+++++++.
Pro Football Focus gave the Jaguars the honor of second best pick in the draft.
My pre-draft mock had the Jaguars trading up to get Ramsey at No. 3 overall but they got their man anyway at No. 5. Our top-graded cornerback is a defensive chess piece, capable of playing in the slot, outside, or even at free safety. Ultimately, the Jaguars would love to see Ramsey play on the outside and develop into one of the top corners in the league â and he has the size and athleticism to do it â but even if he doesn't reach those heights, he's at the very least an excellent slot cornerback and zone defender. In Jacksonville's scheme, he can kick inside to the slot to provide linebacker-like defense (led all CBs in run defense in 2015) while providing great range in their zone concepts. His best comparison is a Green-Bay version of Charles Woodson that brings value to all phases of the defense.