Surprise Yes, Reach No

With household names such as Colt McCoy, Jordan Shipley, Eric Norwood and Damian Williams still on the board, the Jacksonville Jaguars stuck to their guns and drafted D'Anthony Smith, a defensive tackle from Louisiana Tech. So who is D'Anthony Smith?

D'Anthony Smith is another 'tweener type of defensive tackle as he stands 6'2" and weighs 300 pounds. Smith has good burst off the snap and has an adequate amount of strength to fight off blockers. Smith plays with good intelligence as he recognizes cutbacks, that intelligence makes him a Gene Smith/Jack Del Rio type of player.

How will Smith be used? D'Anthony Smith will likely be used in the Jaguars defensive tackle rotation as he, Terrance Knighton, and yesterday's first-round pick Tyson Alualu will all be active. Smith and Alualu will likely be used in passing situations.

What do the experts say?

CBS Sports.com--

Pass rush: Good initial quickness to pressure the pocket, but lacks a variety of pass-rush moves and relies predominately on his bull rush. Showed an improved swim move as a senior. Cerebral defender who keeps his head on a swivel and reacts well to the screen and draw plays. Keeps his eyes on the quarterback and does a nice job of getting his hands up in the air to deflect passes when he can't get pressure.

Run defense: Short, stumpy defender who plays with good pad level and leg drive to hold up in the running game. Active feet and good lateral agility to slide down the line and make the tackle at or near the line of scrimmage.

Explosion: Good initial quickness off the snap. Flashes the burst to attack gaps and collapse the pocket from the interior. Violent hands to disengage from blocks. Flashes some pop as a tackler. Will leap at the ballcarrier and knock them violently into the ground.

Strength: Good leg drive and use of leverage for the bull rush. Good upper-body strength to violently rip away from blocks.

Tackling: Recognizes the cutback and has the flexibility and balance to protect his knees by sprawling and pushing off his hands to get past the blocker. Good strength to slide off blocks and make the tackle as backs run by. Shows some lateral agility and balance to break down in close quarters.

Intangibles: Remains a work in progress. Has been able to get by with just his size and athletic ability at this level. Doesn't play with the nastiness you'd expect from a defensive tackle. Might lack the intensity and self motivation to maximize his talent. Experienced in the 4-3 (under-tackle) and as the nose in a three-man front when the Bulldogs went to nickel. Durable. Started 44 consecutive games to finish his career. Ascending talent with upside worthy of development.

As for as fans not knowing who D'Anthony Smith is, you're not alone. Scout.com had Smith ranked as the 11th best defensive tackle in the draft and still many draftniks didn't have Smith on their radar. The Jaguars seem to succeed with these types of players as just last year they grabbed Terrance Knighton and Derek Cox, linebacker Justin Durant back in 2007, and Rashean Mathis back in 2003. If D'Anthony Smith can perform like the aforementioned players, he will be very much worthy of the team's third-round pick.


Jags Illustrated Top Stories