When everyone was expecting them to zig, the Jacksonville Jaguars ... jagged.
With the third overall selection of the 2014 NFL Draft, the Jaguars delivered the first surprise of the opening round by selecting quarterback Blake Bortles. While quarterback was a known position of need for Jacksonville, it was widely presumed that Johnny Manziel would be the first signal caller to hear his name called by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell at Radio City Music Hall on Thursday night. Instead, the quarterback from the University of Central Florida was called to the stage earlier than the 2012 Heisman Trophy winner.
"It so awesome to be able to stay in Florida is unbelievable," Bortles told ESPN's Suzy Kolber after being selected. "I'm so excited I can't wait."
The reactions of many following the NFL Draft on Twitter contained at least as much shock than excitement.
Reactions To Jaguars Picking Blake Bortles
Listed at 6'4" and 230 pounds, Bortles has the prototypical quarterback measurements. He raised his draft stock with breakout performance in UCF's Fiesta Bowl upset win over Baylor, throwing for 301 yards and accounting for four touchdowns. A redshirt junior during the 2013 season, Bortles led Central Florida to a 13-1 record and threw for 25 touchdowns and 3,581 yards.