Trevor Lawrence is going to be one of those NFL players constantly watched and scrutinized, but he should be used to it by now. The Clemson quarterback with the long strawberry blond locks is almost guaranteed to go to the Jacksonville Jaguars in the upcoming NFL Draft.
The Jaguars finished last season with a 1-15 record, so Lawrence has his work cut out for him. Now with a new coach and Lawrence at the helm, the Jaguars and the city of Jacksonville’s luck just might turn around.
Jacksonville’s draft pick
It’s no secret the Jaguars have struggled in recent years. They’re consistently near the bottom of the AFC South and only made one appearance in the playoffs in 13 seasons.
But could that change in 2021? Jaguars owner Shad Khan hopes so. That’s why he went after one of the most successful college football coaches of all time. Urban Meyer, former coach at Ohio State and Florida, came out of retirement to accept the head coach position when he heard the Jaguars could pick up Lawrence in the draft.
Now that the Jaguars have the first pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, fans assume Lawrence will join the team in Jacksonville. Consistently ranked among the top quarterbacks, Lawrence was on the scouting radar even during his high school days.
When he got to Clemson, he didn’t disappoint, picking up the starting position midway through his freshman season and leading the Tigers to a National Championship.
Will Trevor Lawrence help give the NFL international appeal?
Since 2013, the Jacksonville Jaguars have played at least one home game in London. The reason was twofold. First, the Jaguars have struggled to get fans in the seats, losing season or not. Playing one or two games in London would lower season ticket prices and hopefully encourage more fans to show up in Jacksonville. The other reason was to expand NFL interest overseas.
In that regard, drafting Lawrence adds to the appeal for Jacksonville. According to Sports Illustrated, he could be the perfect international spokesman for the Jaguars and the NFL. Just like the NBA, trying to expand its brand to a global market, the NFL is hoping to follow suit.
Behind Lawrence’s dominant play and worldwide NFL pitch efforts, he, along with the franchise, could easily rake in a bundle of money with deals and sponsorships, something that’s been lacking in Jacksonville almost since its inception. And the NFL could see a rise in interest and popularity from international markets.
Of course, all this depends on the COVID-19 pandemic and if the team travels to London this year. Beyond that, Lawrence needs to perform and put up numbers that the franchise is expecting of him.
Will Jacksonville be the next NFL hot spot?
The losing seasons and a facility that needed upgrading were just some of the reasons fans stayed away from Jaguars games. There was a proposal that was recently voted down by the City Council to build a new entertainment complex around the stadium.
The taxpayer burden was one of the main reasons the deal was shuttered but with Lawrence’s arrival almost imminent, the franchise is hoping to get more fans into the stadium and higher bottom lines.
Lawrence’s impending arrival has rejuvenated Jacksonville fans. Tired of losing and having subpar players, the shift in the fan base is apparent. With a new coach and now a new prospect on the horizon, the tides finally seem to be turning.
The buzz around Jacksonville is electric and as Reggie Gaffney, a member of the City Council, told SI, “I think we want to ride or die with Trevor Lawrence. This is who we’ve been talking about for four months now.”