The Jacksonville Jaguars may have shown their hand ever so slightly when it was announced the team had met with former University of Washington wide receiver Dante Pettis. Pettis an All-American as a senior, may be on the team’s “watch list” headed toward the NFL Draft.
“If they don’t come up with a solution to retain wide receiver Allen Robinson, the Jacksonville Jaguars could be looking for a wide receiver in the near future,” writes Jay Johnson of jaguarswire.usatoday.com. “That search could very well take place in the 2018 NFL Draft as the Jags have proven that they are solid when it comes to drafting at the position. Count Washington University wide receiver Dante Pettis as one who the Jags could be interested in as it was revealed they met with him last weekend at the NFL combine.”
Pettis could be in play with the 29th pick in the first round. This is the lowest the Jacksonville Jaguars have had a first-round selection since 2007. In addition to being a consensus All-American, Pettis was a First-team All-Pac-12 selection last season and is currently the NCAA career leader for touchdowns by punt return.
The Jacksonville Jaguars have some work to do with their wide receivers as the team could also lose Allen Hurns, if his contract is not renegotiated and the team decides to release him. Marqise Lee is scheduled to become a free agent as well.
Pettis announced he would not participate in the Huskies Pro Day on Saturday because of an injury. While he spoke to NFL teams at the Combine in February, he has decided to remove his name from the list of Washington players who will try to impress NFL scouts.
Per Yahoo Sports, Pettis hurt his ankle last November and did not do any athletic work at the Scouting Combine.
“I just didn’t feel like it was ready yet,” Pettis said to NFL.com. “These drills, there’s a certain way to do them to get the fastest time, and it takes a lot of reps to get that technique down. I didn’t feel like I had enough time to get those reps in, so I’m just deciding to not push my ankle too hard right now and let it continue to heal and get better and better until I actually am 100 percent and am able to get all those reps in and not feel any pain whatsoever.”
Pettis told NFL.com he had set up meetings with both the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Los Angeles Rams. Los Angeles, then St. Louis, drafted his brother Austin in the third round of the 2011 draft.
At 6-foot-1 and 195 pounds, Pettis could be a solid target in the Jaguars’ offense. He does not have the height of either Robinson or Hurns, but he is bigger than Lee and his work in the return game could be valuable to the Jacksonville Jaguars.