Jaguars head coach Doug Pederson was on "The Pat McAfee Show" when the trade was first reported, and he called Cleveland a "starting-type guard" who solidifies their talented offensive line. In Jacksonville, Cleveland is reunited with offensive line coach Phil Rauscher, who spent two seasons with Cleveland in Minnesota.
Cleveland was selected by the Vikings with the No. 58 overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft out of Boise State. He has started in 49 of 53 games played over four NFL seasons, and has a 73.8 PFF grade this year, along with just one sack allowed. Cleveland is on an expiring deal, and was viewed as a trade candidate in the weeks leading up to the deadline.
Let's attempt to grade this trade:
Cleveland was arguably the top guard on the "trade market," and he aids Jacksonville's goal of keeping Trevor Lawrence upright. The former second-round pick has played both left and right guard, and figures to fit in on the interior down south as well. However, some believe Cleveland could be a tackle, which is a decision Jacksonville will have to make in the future. Either way, the Jaguars land a legitimate starter on the offensive line that possesses versatility for at least this season.
It felt like Cleveland was on his way out of Minnesota with his expiring deal and with Dalton Risner having already filled his spot on the line. Cleveland is worth more than a sixth-round pick, but it appears the Vikings weren't going to go above and beyond to keep him in the fold next offseason.