On Monday, they found their stopgap, if only temporarily: the club signed Tra Thomas, 35, who spent the first 11 years of his career with the Eagles.
"Tra has been a part of a lot of winning in Philadelphia, he's been durable, he's a three-time Pro Bowl player, and he is a solid, experienced veteran and a good presence in the locker room," Jaguars general manager Gene Smith said.Given his age, Thomas is nothing more than a short-term solution for the Jags. But his addition to the roster means that the club doesn't have to rush an inexperienced player into a job that entails making sure quarterback David Garrard won't get killed.
This also means that the Jags could still use their eighth-overall selection on a left tackle, particularly since this draft is top-heavy with legit prospects. It's worth pointing out that Jacksonville's offensive line was decimated by injuries in 2008; having everyone healthy heading into training camp could be the biggest factor in getting the team back to the playoffs. Maybe even more important than trying to replace the irreplaceable Reggie Williams.*