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Dave Caldwell: Jags not worried about draft 'backlash'

It almost seems too obvious that the Jacksonville Jaguars will use the No. 3 overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft on a quarterback.

However, general manager Dave Caldwell reiterated that he's not going to force taking a quarterback, regardless of what the local reaction might be.

"I'd rather get backlash from that than backlash from picking the wrong guy," Caldwell told CBS Sports' Pete Prisco.

As Jaguars fans found out with Blaine Gabbert, taking the wrong quarterback early in the draft can set a franchise back years.

"In today's day and age, if you can't get Peyton Manning or Matt Ryan, and they might not be available for the next 10 or 15 years, then you have to adapt and build the roster and do what's best for the organization," Caldwell said. "And if a quarterback presents itself later in the draft, you take and develop him. Having a franchise guy makes the world a lot easier, though. It can erase a lot of mistakes you make. But if you force it, you can screw it up. I don't know if we're going to find that guy, but I hope we do."

We discussed on the "Around The League Podcast" that the Jags can't move forward as a franchise without a quarterback, but Caldwell won't force taking one if he feels there is better value (i.e. Jadeveon Clowney).

Caldwell told Prisco that he hasn't yet spoken with any of the top quarterback prospects, and that he's just beginning his evaluations. Still, for the umpteenth time this offseason, Caldwell sang the praises of quarterback Chad Henne.

"We have a lot of issues," Caldwell said. "We have a lot of places we need to get better. Chad did a pretty admirable job for us. He was .500 in his last eight games. It was his first year in the system. Just because he's a veteran doesn't mean you know the system. He has good leadership skills. Guys rallied around him. Our feeling is if we can upgrade the offensive line, get some playmakers, improve the running game, I think he can sustain us and be our starter until somebody presents himself."

Henne is a decent NFL quarterback, but he's not the future of the franchise. As owner Shad Khan said earlier this offseason, the Jags will pick a quarterback in the draft. The question for the next two months is whether it will be in the first round, later rounds or both.

On the latest edition of the "Around The League Podcast," the guys speculate on big names who could be cut, then talk offseason forecasts for the Cowboys and Raiders.

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