New York Jets Draft Quinton Coples

The New York Jets drafted UNC defensive end Quinton Coples in the first round of the NFL Draft

With Melvin Ingram, Chandler Jones, Courtney Upshaw and David DeCastro still on the board. The New York Jets continued their perplexing off-season by selecting North Carolina defensive end Quinton Coples. Of all the pass rushers on the board, Coples had the most question marks about him and does not have the versatility to play major reps at outside linebacker. Both Mike Tannenbaum and Rex Ryan confirmed Coples will play defensive end. He is a guy who displayed an unnerving lack of motor and passion for the game of football. Sound familiar?

Here are some excerpts of the draft reports on him leading up to draft day. Keep in mind, Coples play dropped off substantially from his senior year to his junior year. –

“Played not to get hurt. Not an elite pass rusher from the edge. Motor runs hot and cold”

“Has developed a me-first reputation”

“Marginal competitor. Does not apply himself. Lacks the heart, desire and glass eating makeup desired in the trenches and must ratchet up the intensity if he wants to play against the big boys in the pros”

Now there is a reason Coples was a first round prospect. He was a beast in his junior year (10 sacks) and had a monster senior week. He has strong explosiveness and has very good interior pass rushing moves. The reason the Jets are going to keep him on the defensive line primarily is because he will be more effective sliding between defensive end and defensive tackle on some passing downs.

What is frustrating is that Rex Ryan continually compared Coples to Shaun Ellis or Trevor Pryce, which is exactly what he did with Muhammad Wilkerson, last year’s first round pick. Coples is a defensive end and will hopefully be a good one but now that leaves the Jets will three defensive ends (look for Mike DeVito to be on the trade block), but still major questions at OLB, RT, FS, WR, and RB. Similar to free agency, the Jets have ignored their major holes and added to a position where they had capable starters.

More to come…

Turn On The Jets NFL Draft Live Blog

Live coverage of the NFL Draft tonight. Who will the New York Jets select?

Stay with us here all night as we guide you through the insanity of the NFL Draft. We will update each pick, along with provide running commentary on the night’s proceedings, endless rumors, and questionable decisions. Make sure you are also following Turn On The Jets on Twitter and Facebook, along with our staff writer Chris Gross on Twitter. Will Mike Tannenbaum continue his history of trading up? Will he finally trade down? Or can he stay put for once in his life?

16) New York Jets – Quinton Coples, DE

15) Seattle Seahawks – Bruce Irvin, DE What? What? What? A complete shocker and a complete, absolute reach. What are you thinking? The Jets better take Ingram.

14) St. Louis – Michael Brockers, DE – A nice piece to add for the Rams front seven. They have to be disappointed they missed out on Floyd. Another player I am happy is out of consideration for the Jets.

13) Arizona Cardinals – Michael Floyd, WR – Arizona saves the Jets from themselves by taking Floyd. Thank god for no wide receiver in the first round! It is looking like the Jets will have a good shot to leave with Ingram or Jones.

12) Philadelphia Eagles – Fletcher Cox, DT – The Eagles trade up and get terrific value with Cox here. Kansas City will regret the day they took Poe over Cox, who is going to be a stud and bring a dynamic playmaker to Philadelphia’s front seven.

11) Kansas City Chiefs – Dontari Poe, DT – Boom or bust. Thrilled the Jets didn’t end up with him. Ingram, Floyd, Cox, Brockers, Jones and DeCastro all still on the board for the Jets.

10) Buffalo Bills – Stephon Gilmore, CB – Kind of a surprise here. Many people ranked Gilmore just as high as Claiborne in this draft. Buffalo is building quite a defense out there in upstate New York. He will provide some electricity to their back end.

9) Carolina Panthers – Luke Kuechly, LB – A much needed addition to their front seven. Kuechly is a three down linebacker who should be a star at this level. He is very good value at number nine.

8 – Miami Dolphins – Ryan Tannehill, QB – A new young quarterback in the AFC East. How many weeks until he starts this season? By the way, it will be Knicks vs. Heat in the first round…Sixers are tanking the place out right now. Also Rangers are up 2-1 heading into the 3rd.

7) Tampa Bay – Mark Barron, S – Another target for the Jets disappears. Barron will be a nice addition to Greg Schiano’s defense. With St. Louis at #14…I can’t see them letting Floyd get past them so it does look like it will be an outside linebacker for the Jets.

6) Dallas Cowboys – Morris Claiborne, CB – Trade Mania! Wow. Dallas moves up 8 spots to get the draft’s top corner. By adding him and Brandon Carr Dallas has rebuilt their shabby secondary. Rob Ryan must be a happy guy. They must have been tired of being torced by Eli, no?

5) Jacksonville Jaguars – Justin Blackmon, WR – The Jaguars traded up to get the wide receiver they desperately needed. It leaves an interesting choice for St. Louis with the 6th pick. Claiborne? Cox? Somebody else?

4) Minnesota Vikings – Matt Kalil, OT – Plenty of speculation about them taking Claiborne but in the end they went with the big time tackle to protect Christian Ponder…can’t argue with it.

There is some chatter about the Jets moving up to 13, swapping picks with Arizona. If Barron is there he would be tempting, if not look towards Ingram or Jones.

3) Cleveland Browns – Trent Richardson, RB – A good move for both Cleveland and Minnesota to swing this trade. Cleveland desperately needed a playmaker and Minnesota can still get their guy at 4, whether it is Kalil or Claiborne.

2) Washington Redskins – Robert Griffin III, QB – Vick. Griffin III. Eli. And Tony Romo missing wide open receivers in critical spots. The NFC East will be fun for awhile.

1) Indianapolis Colts – Andrew Luck, QB – Mel Kiper Jr. is in love. Chris Berman is past his prime. We will see Mr. Luck in week six at the New Meadowlands. It will be interesting to see what kind of weapons the Colts work to surround him with throughout the rest of the draft.

7:55 – Last pre-draft update: I don’t think the Jets will trade up but if they do Carolina is a logical partner at #9. Mike Tannenbaum and Carolina GM Martin Hurney worked together on the Jets trade up for Darrelle Revis and on the Kris Jenkins trade. The Jets could get antsy about landing their pass rusher, whether it is Melvin Ingram or Chandler Jones. We haven’t heard Mark Barron’s name at all associated with the Jets…a little odd?

7:30 – 30 minutes out and the most buzz for the Jets involves Chandler Jones, Melvin Ingram and Michael Floyd.

7:15 – First big splash of the night. Cleveland has moved up to #3, presumably to get Trent Richardson. Apparently they were panicked about Tampa Bay moving up to steal him and they didn’t want to miss out on him like they did on RG3. You can cross Richardson off the list for the Jets. Don’t be surprised if the Vikings look to move back again. Minnesota picked up an extra 4th, 5th, and 7th round pick…not a bad haul.

6:35 – Evan Silva of Rotoworld’s final mock draft now has the Jets taking David DeCastro instead of Melvin Ingram (as it did in his mock draft this morning)…Todd McShay, Mel Kiper Jr and Mike Mayock all have the Jets taking Michael Floyd. I won’t bail on my Ingram pick now but I am starting to sweat about being right for the third year in a row. You can’t call 2 years in a row a streak, right?

By the way, how nervous are Rangers fans right now? You can’t lose a game 7 in your building. I am confident the Blueshirts will take care of business tonight. Personally, I am more concerned about the Knicks somehow losing to Charlotte while Philadelphia beats Detroit so we could get the Bulls in round one instead of the Heat.

5:45 PM – Sal Paolantonio has been sitting outside the locked Jets war room getting pieces of paper slid under the door to him every 30 minutes. So far he has concluded the Jets could trade up, trade down, stay put and that they might take David DeCastro, Michael Floyd, Melvin Ingram, Chandler Jones, Courtney Upshaw, or about fifteen other players…thanks Sal.

Rich Cimini has reported the Jets could trade up for Chandler Jones. We can’t confirm if he is saying this only because both of them went to Syracuse…probably.


Turn On The Jets First Round Mock Draft

TOJ with a full first round mock draft

I had to get at least one full first round mock draft in the books. There are a few trades factored in here –

1. Indianapolis Colts – Andrew Luck, QB – Big shoes to fill in a tough rebuilding situation.

2. Washington Redskins – Robert Griffin III, QB – A needed move by the quarterback desperate Redskins.

3. Minnesota Vikings – Morris Claiborne, CB – You need somebody to cover Calvin Johnson, Greg Jennings, and Brandon Marshall.

4. Cleveland Browns – Trent Richardson, RB – They are idiots if they don’t take him.

5. Buffalo Bills (Trade With Tampa Bay) – Matt Kalil, OT – Fills a major need for them.

6. St. Louis Rams – Fletcher Cox, DT – Good value spot for a special talent.

7. Jacksonville Jaguars – Justin Blackmon, WR – They have needed receivers since Jimmy Smith and Keenan McCardell left.

8. Miami Dolphins – Ryan Tannehill, QB – Matt Moore isn’t putting people in the seats.

9. San Diego Chargers (Trade With Carolina) – Mark Barron, S – Will the Jets call about moving up to take him instead?

10. Tampa Bay Bucs – Luke Kuechly, LB – Very good value for a player who should be a great three down linebacker.

11. Kansas City Chiefs – Michael Brockers, DE – A nice piece to add to an improving defense.

12. Seattle Seahawks – Quinton Coples, DE – They need help getting after the QB. Boom or Bust.

13. Philadelphia Eagles (Trade With Arizona) Chandler Jones, DE – Late riser will be nice addition to front seven.

14. Dallas Cowboys – David DeCastro, G – Tough interior blocker who Bill Callahan will love.

15. Arizona Cardinals – Michael Floyd, WR – Potential big play threat opposite Larry Fitzgerald.

16. New York Jets – Melvin Ingram, OLB – The pass rusher the Jets need falls into their laps.

17. Cincinnati Bengals – Stephen Gilmore, CB – Terrific value here. Could be better than Claiborne.

18. Carolina Panthers – Dont’a Hightower, LB – Nice piece to add to their front seven.

19. Chicago Bears – Riley Reiff, OT – They always need help protecting the QB.

20. Tennessee Titans – Whitney Mercilus, DE – He will pair with Kamerion Wimbley to form a nice pass rushing duo.

21. Cincinnati Bengals – Dre Kirkpatrick, CB – Needed addition to their secondary.

22. Cleveland Browns – Stephen Hill, WR – Pairs with Richardson to give offense needed playmakers.

23. Detroit Lions – Cordy Glenn, OL – Too good of value to pass up.

24. Pittsburgh Steelers – Dontari Poe, DT – Will develop behind Casey Hampton.

25. Denver Broncos – Doug Martin, RB – They need a legit number one back.

26. Houston Texans – Kendall Wright, WR – A threat opposite Andre Johnson.

27. New England Patriots – Courtney Upshaw, OLB – Good value here, could be immediate starter in Patriots defense.

28. Green Bay Packers – Shea McClellin, OLB – Pass rushing threat opposite Clay Matthews.

29. Baltimore Ravens – Peter Konz, C – Should be long time anchor for line.

30. San Francisco – Nick Perry, DE – Too much talent to pass up here.

31. New England Patriots – Harrison Smith, S – Just seems like a New England type player.

32. New York Giants – Jonathan Martin, OT – Should be immediate starter.

Turn On The Jets 12 Pack: Final Thoughts On The NFL Draft

TOJ with 12 final thoughts on the New York Jets heading into the NFL Draft

One last rant on the NFL Draft and a special 12 pack for you to enjoy as you saddle up for a great night of sports. Stay with us throughout the night, as I will be live blogging throughout the entire first round and updating the post after each pick. After the Jets make their selection, myself and Chris Gross will provide instant analysis. Tomorrow we will provide further analysis, along with breaking down the 2nd and 3rd rounds. Finally, the NBA playoffs do tip off on Saturday so look for a first round and Knicks preview at some point tomorrow.

1. No Trade, No Trent – It is being reported today that there is a “0.0” percent chance the New York Jets will trade up for running back Trent Richardson unless he begins to fall or they receive a “sweetheart deal.” Nothing is a 0.0 percent possibility with this team but unless Richardson unexpectedly escapes the top 5, it doesn’t sound like he will end up on the Jets.

2. He Is A Guard – There is also chatter picking up about Stanford Guard David DeCastro being a possibility for the Jets at #16. The problem is that they reportedly plan to move him to right tackle if they select him. I don’t like moving a guy out of his natural position to fit a need on your team. Don’t put a square peg in a round hole. If you want to address tackle in round one, go up and get Matt Kalil who could slide into the 7-10 range or stay put and take Riley Reiff.

3. Fighting Irish – If Michael Floyd is on the board at #16…the Jets are going to strongly consider him. If they pick him over Melvin Ingram, this website will riot in protest. I dislike taking a receiver in the first round as a “Ground and Pound” team, particularly when you badly need somebody who can get after the quarterback. Floyd over Courtney Upshaw would be slightly easier to stomach but I still would disagree with the move.

4. Trade Back – If the Jets miss out on Melvin Ingram, Mark Barron and Michael Floyd, and they feel they could still get Courtney Upshaw or Chandler Jones by trading back a few spots, I have no problem with that move. Unfortunately, that is likely a risky route because it sounds like Jones will be a top 15 pick anyway and the Bengals are reportedly high on Upshaw at #17.

5. Mid-Round Safety – Unless the Jets are going to trade into the top ten, they aren’t getting Mark Barron. Look for them to target LSU safety Brandon Taylor in the 2nd or 3rd round, unless Trumaine Johnson is available at 47…who I can’t see the Jets passing on there.

6. Lucky Break – It is starting to sound like there is a very good chance Melvin Ingram will slide all the way to #16. Keep an eye on Seattle at #12 but if he gets by them, the Jets should be in good shape. I’d be shocked if they passed on him at #16, if he was still available…shocked.

7. Day Two and Day Three – I don’t want to get too much into day two and three prospects for the Jets until I see how they handle their first pick but keep an eye on running back Robert Turbin and wide receiver Alshon Jeffery.

8. The Other Outside Linebackers – If the Jets don’t end up with an outside linebacker today, look for them to make a strong push for Vinny Curry or Andre Branch tomorrow.

9. Veteran Trades – I am sure the Jets will float out a few veterans in trade offers but I don’t expect anything to happen, mainly because nobody wants Bart Scott, Calvin Pace (at his money), Wayne Hunter, or Eric Smith. The sleeper is moving Dustin Keller but that still remains a long shot.

10. Disaster Picks – Dontari Poe or Quinton Coples have bust written all over them.

11. Keep An Eye On – Buffalo trading up for Matt Kalil. San Diego trading up for Mark Barron. Tampa Bay trading up for Trent Richardson.

12. 7 Paths For the Jets…

  • Take Melvin Ingram at 16
  • Take Michael Floyd at 16
  • Take Chandler Jones at 16
  • Take David DeCastro at 16
  • Trade Up For Mark Barron
  • Trade Way Up For Trent Richardson
  • Trade Back For Courtney Upshaw

Final Thoughts On New York Jets & NFL Draft, Part 1

Chris Gross gives his final thoughts on the New York Jets heading into the NFL Draft tonight

In part 1 of our final thoughts on the NFL Draft, staff writer Chris Gross gives us a review of what to look for this weekend. Check back in a few hours for my final thoughts and a first round mock – JC

After extensive review and evaluation at Turn On The Jets all week, I have a few final thoughts regarding the Jets potential moves before Roger Goodell takes the podium at Radio City Music Hall tonight.

5 Moves I’ll Be Happy With

1. Stay put and draft Courtney Upshaw – By now its obvious that I feel this will be the best move for the Jets. I’ve gone over everything I love about Upshaw and how I think he will be a tremendous fit in Rex Ryan’s defense.

2. Trade Up for Mark Barron – Barron is another player I feel will be a great fit under Ryan. The Jets still need help at safety, and although Yeremiah Bell is on the radar, Barron could team with Revis to form a dominant secondary for years to come. Depending on the asking price, I think Barron is worth jumping ahead a few spots.

3. Stay at 16 and draft Melvin Ingram – I have not been very high on Ingram at all. I still feel Upshaw is the better player and should be taken over him if both are available. However, if Ingram can be had without making a trade and New York opts to select him, I will be all for it. As I have said, he has tremendous upside. He is strong, fast, athletic, and versatile and I have to believe that if Ryan takes him, it is for good reason. Rex can certainly get this promising prospect to fulfill his potential.

4. Somehow end up with Fletcher Cox – Odds are Fletcher Cox will be selected before pick 16, so if this were to happen, the Jets would likely have to trade up for him. However, like Barron, I think he is one of the few players worthy of the sacrifice. Cox will undoubtedly have an impact right away, and his explosiveness and tenacity will upgrade the D-Line to one of the best in football.

5. Select Michael Brockers at pick 16 – I would not be very fond of trading up for Brockers, simply because I do not think he holds high enough value at his position to be worthy of such a move. However, if he can be had at pick 16, or even by trading back a few spots, I would gladly be on board. Brockers has tremendous size and ability to be a great 5-technique on the Jets defensive line, and would provide a great interior pass rush playing opposite Muhammed Wilkerson. This would help to get pressure off of the edge with the amount of attention offensive lines would have to pay to the interior.

5 Moves That Will Have To Prove Their Worth

1. Trade Up For Melvin Ingram – As I said, if Rex sees something to take Ingram over Upshaw, I trust his judgment. However, from what I have seen on him, I don’t like the idea of sacrificing picks to get him.

2. Select Chandler Jones at any point – Whether they take him at 16 or trade back, Jones will have a lot to prove. I do think that he has the potential to be a fantastic player in this league. His size and athletic ability give him an extremely high ceiling.

3. Draft Quinton Coples – Like Jones, Coples has a very high upside as he is very athletically gifted and has great size. However, as much as I hate to say it, I see too much of Vernon Gholston in him to immediately support a move like this.

4. Trade Up For Trent Richardson – The only reason I put this move in this category is because of what it will cost the Jets. There is no doubt in my mind that Richardson will be an elite NFL Running Back, however if New York is going to sacrifice the necessary picks to obtain him, he better become that in a hurry. Giving up a first rounder next year is a serious gamble, and although I think it will pay off, I’d still need to see it happen.

5. Draft Michael Floyd – I do like Floyd, but with the holes on defense, and the Jets clear commitment to the run game, I’m not very fond of the idea of taking a Wide Receiver in the first round. Alshon Jeffery could be available in round two, and although he may not be as polished as Floyd, he could still develop into a great player.

2 Moves I Would Hate

1. Taking Dontari Poe  – As I wrote in my D-Line preview, Poe would not be a good choice for the Jets and they should not consider him at any point. He does not play up to what his combine numbers show, and he seems extremely lazy. I’m not saying he will not develop into a good player, I just think the Jets would be wasting their pick on him. This would be a terrible decision, and one that I would be shocked to see.

2. Taking an Offensive Lineman In Round One – I do realize the Jets need a Right Tackle, but there is so much talent at other positions of need in the first round. The Jets have neglected this position while there is decent talent still available on the free agent market (Vernon Carey), so to see them use their pick on a position they seem comfortable with would not be good.

Names to Keep An Eye On

Running BacksDavid Wilson, Lamar Miller, Doug Martin, LaMichael James. All of these players would be quality second round selections, and would all add speed and explosiveness to the Jets running attack. Each of them would bring a different dynamic to the table and would complement Shonn Greene well. Of the bunch, Miller is probably the fastest, Wilson is the most complete, and James has been the most productive at the college level.

Outside LinebackersVinny Curry, Jonathan Massaquoi, Bruce Irvin. Curry and Massaquoi have good size and average speed at the position. Conversely, Irvin has below average size, but excellent speed. Curry has the potential to be drafted the highest, but I don’t necessarily see him as being that much better than Massaquoi or Irvin. Irvin certainly has the highest ceiling, but comes with some baggage, having had multiple run ins with the law in his past. None of these players are comparable to the OLBs who could be obtained in round 1, but if the Jets opt to go in another direction, they all could develop nicely down the road.

Alshon Jeffery, WR South Carolina – Jeffery is reportedly on the Jets radar and for good reason. He has tremendous size at nearly 6’3” 216 lbs, and good speed to go with it, having run a sub 4.5 40 at his pro day. He would provide the Jets with the big target capable of stretching the field that they need opposite Santonio Holmes.

Vontaze Burfict, LB Arizona State – I’ve defended Burfict throughout the entire draft process arguing that his character was being unfairly judged and that his lackluster testing numbers do not hamper his abilities on the field. However, Burfict made me eat my words this week when news broke of a positive drug test at the combine. Although I do think he has some mental issues he needs to work out, I still stand by my assertion that Burfict has the ability to be a great linebacker in this league. He needs to get into the right situation, with the right people around him, and believe it or not, I think the Jets would be perfect for him. As much as the Jets are perceived to have a circus like atmosphere, I do think that Rex Ryan is one of the best player coaches in the league, and despite what happened last year, can still get his guys to buy in as good as anyone. It would do Burfict wonders to be around guys like Mangold, Revis, Harris, and Ferguson. If he could be had in one of the later rounds, which I think is very realistic, he would be a pick worthy of the risk for New York. He has the potential to form a deadly combination at Inside Linebacker with David Harris in the future.

NHL Playoffs: Gearing Up For Game 7

Rob Celletti gears up for game 7 of Rangers/Senators

Man oh man, was I wrong.

In my first round preview, I predicted a fairly easy five-game win for the Rangers in their series over the Ottawa Senators. instead, what’s played out over the last two weeks has been nothing short of an epic clash featuring everything that NHL playoff hockey is all about. In addition to some wonderful and timely goals, there has been tight checking, physical play, and unsung heroes emerging from both sides.

Ottawa has simply answered the bell in this series. I criticized them for not being physical enough to compete with the gritty Rangers, yet Game 2, which really changed the tenor of this series, saw Ottawa become the physical aggressors. They have played on the edge, and sometimes over it, but it caught the Rangers off-guard. Ottawa has been the better team in this series.

Make no mistake, the Rangers have not played well. They’re no offensive juggernaut, but the nearly 200-minute shutout streak put together by Ottawa goalie Craig Anderson from the 2nd period of Game 4 through the 2nd period of Game 6 was nonetheless frustrating and flabbergasting. But with their season on the edge, Brad Richards, he of the 9-year/$60 million contract signed last July, stepped up and justified the money invested in him, leading the Rangers to a season-saving Game 6 victory.

So now, Thursday night arguably becomes the best New York sports night of the year so far. Two area Game 7’s (Devils vs. Panthers in addition to Rangers/Sens), the NFL Draft (which of course, TOJ has been all over), and the Knicks’ season finale.

I refuse to make a prediction, I just look forward to watching the first Rangers game 7 at MSG since June 14, 1994.

NFL Draft: Melvin Ingram vs. Courtney Upshaw

We debate the value of Courtney Upshaw verus Melvin Ingram

Despite my belief and desire for the New York Jets to take Melvin Ingram in the first round, staff writer Chris Gross has remained adamant on his preference of Courtney Upshaw. Considering that he played defensive end and linebacker in college, I set Chris loose on the game film to make his argument. Here is what he came up with, followed by my rebuttal – JC

From the surface, both players are similar. Both stand around 6’2 and weigh around 270 pounds. Their statistics are close, Ingram with a couple more sacks, Upshaw with more tackles. Yet after breaking down full game footage, I came up with the following conclusion – Courtney Upshaw is head and shoulders above Melvin Ingram as a football player.

Courtney Upshaw – I’ve previously discussed all of Upshaw’s statistics, measurables, and testing numbers, all of which may not be mind blowing, but are impressive. Some of the biggest knocks on Upshaw, and why he seems to be falling down draft boards, are that he did not test well in position drills at his pro day and that he does not possess the arm length that you look for in an elite pass rusher. On film, Upshaw shows tremendous explosion of the ball, some of the best I’ve seen out of any prospect this year. Although the assertion that he does not have elite reach is correct, he uses his hands extremely well and undoubtedly plays with the best leverage I’ve seen out of any defensive player in this year’s class. He is not hampered by his lack of reach because he makes up for it with elite technique.

Another knock that I have heard on Upshaw is that he has reached his potential, and does not have a high ceiling. This is another assertion that his game film proved false. As much as I love Upshaw’s game, there are several areas where he needs improvement, which can certainly be done under a coach like Rex Ryan. At times last season, Upshaw tended to drop his head causing him to miss tackles and lose outside contain when lined up at defensive end. There were also times when he shot too far up field on his pass rush, and ran completely by the quarterback. On three step drops, Upshaw needs to react quicker by either getting his hands up or executing a faster pass rush move. If he can improve this at the next level, he will register even more sacks and will establish himself as a premier pass rusher, as well as a fantastic all around player.

Upshaw also proved to be very physical, and most importantly, plays with an extremely high motor. This is an asset that cannot be measured, especially at the position he will be asked to play if he is drafted to the Jets. This past season against Florida, he repeatedly ran down players on pass plays at the second level after rushing the quarterback. In that same game, he also showed fantastic awareness. On one particular play that stands out, he realized he was beat off the ball, and instead of tussling with the tackle, he immediately located the quarterback, tracked where he was going with the ball, and made an interception at the line of scrimmage, proving to be a very intelligent player.

The main things about Courtney Upshaw that stand out on his game film are his physical play, his high motor, his violent hands, and his power at the point of attack. When you watch this kid on film you can just feel his confidence on the field. He knows what he is doing in every situation, and his ability to react and redirect are on another level. Upshaw is going to be an elite player in the NFL, regardless of which team he ends up on.

Melvin Ingram – Ingram’s athleticism on film is obvious. When he plays to his potential, he is fast, explosive, and strong. However, in all of the film that I watched on him, he rarely lived up to that potential. Ingram has several flaws in his game, which he was able to mask with his athleticism in college, but will not be able to do so in the NFL. Some of these flaws are very fixable by good coaching. He tends to turn his back to the sidelines at times, giving up the edge, and he does not show a wide arsenal of pass rush moves, instead relying solely on speed and strength to get to the quarterback. He also has a habit of getting lost in the shuffle, seemingly focused on making plays rather than executing his assignment. Again, these are fixes that can be made by good coaching, and if there is one defensive coach in the league that I would trust to do so, it is Rex Ryan.

However, there are some things about Ingram that even the greatest coaches may not be able to fix. He does not display a very high motor at all. At times, he tends to look lazy and disinterested. He gets pushed around on drive and down blocks way more than a person with his strength should, which tells me he does not play with good leverage, and does not come off the ball with enough authority. Ingram is also the furthest thing from a sure tackler and has trouble staying on his feet in stretches.

I tried to look for any possible reason as to what was causing these flaws that I saw, and I actually came up with a good rationale. The defense that Ingram played in at South Carolina last year seemed to ask him to do too much. Many times he seemed to be worrying about numerous jobs, which could be a result of the team giving him too many responsibilities. Perhaps this is because he was one of the only players on the defense they felt they could trust with certain tasks. However, if that is the case, it hurt his play tremendously.

Ingram also drew many more double teams than Upshaw did, primarily because he lined up inside more, and Upshaw had 3 other all Americans playing alongside him that teams needed to account for. That being said, I do not think Ingram was the best player on South Carolina’s front seven. True Freshman Jadeveon Clowney overshadowed him, and one would think that if anything, teams would be accounting for him rather than Ingram. Maybe it was the other way around, which was a cause for Clowney’s success.

My rebuttal –

I don’t dispute many aspects of your evaluation of both players. Yet, my film analysis hasn’t changed my perspective. Courtney Upshaw is going to be a good NFL player. I saw a guy in college surrounded by immense amounts of talent who produced at a high level but a player who is better suited to spend the bulk of his reps at defensive end, not outside linebacker. I have no doubt he would improve his craft under Rex Ryan and Mike Pettine’s coaching but at his ceiling, I see a very good starting outside linebacker. A player who would be an improved version of Calvin Pace, setting the edge for the run and bringing in 6-8 sacks per year. Upshaw isn’t going to be a bust and he can start immediately, both enticing aspects of him as a prospect.

You can view Upshaw playing for Alabama, the best team in college football as both a positive and a negative. In the positive, he performed well on the biggest stage possible at his level and played against elite competition. In the negative, he was supported by a stacked lineup, including fellow soon to be first round picks Dont’a Hightower, Dre Kirkpatrick and Mark Barron.

Mark Ingram didn’t have any other first round picks on his defense, despite the scary potential of freshman Jadeveon Clowney and still produced at a comparable, if not higher rate than Upshaw.

Is Ingram as consistent as Upshaw? Probably not. Yet, there are two things that jump off the page and put him ahead of him, big plays and versatility. Last season, Ingram had 10 sacks to go with 2 interceptions, 2 fumble recoveries and 3 touchdowns. He has a nose for the football and an ability to make something happen with it when it gets into his hands.

Ingram is going to give the Jets more than an outside linebacker. He can line up at inside linebacker, defensive end, and even defensive tackle. His ability to move around the formation will allow the Jets to get the most out of his pass rushing skills and explosiveness. I disagree about his lack of motor with Chris but do agree he needs work on being a more consistent tackler against the run. The Jets will still have Calvin Pace and Bryan Thomas to slow down the run and help groom Ingram, while he is moved all over the formation by Rex to get after the quarterback.

Rex Ryan is going to see a more athletic version of Adalius Thomas who can become the double digit sack artist his defense desperately needs. Beyond that, he is going to remember what Jason Pierre-Paul did for the Giants last year and the benefit of having a player who can line-up “outside either tackle, move to tackle on third down, and rush the passer standing up inside or off the edge.

The Jets have run stopping linebackers. When they need new ones, they will be easier to find in the draft or free agency than an elite pass rusher. Now is the time for the Jets to finally get a player who can get after the quarterback so they don’t have to overextend themselves with blitzing.

TOJ New York Jets Mock Draft 4.0

TOJ rounds up all the final mock drafts and gives his prediction for what the New York Jets will do with their pick

Christmas Eve. The NFL Draft is finally upon us, starting with the first round in primetime tomorrow night. Here is a look at a collection of final mock drafts and our selection for what the New York Jets will do with the 16th pick. We can’t promise we will be right but it certainly wouldn’t be unprecedented if we were.

Mock Drafts

Don Banks, Sports Illustrated – Dontari Poe, Defensive Tackle, Memphis

Michael Lombardi, NFL.com – Melvin Ingram, Outside Linebacker, South Carolina

Pete Prisco, CBS Sports – Courtney Upshaw, Outside Linebacker, Alabama

Rob Rang, CBS Sports – Courtney Upshaw, Outside Linebacker, Alabama

Pat Kirwin, CBS Sports – Nick Perry, Outside Linebacker, USC

Walter Football – Michael Floyd, Wide Receiver, Notre Dame

Charley Casserly, NFL.com – Quinton Coples, Defensive End/Outside Linebacker, North Carolina

Chad Reuter, NFL.com – Riley Reiff, Offensive Tackle, Iowa

Pro Football Talk – Melvin Ingram, Outside Linebacker, South Carolina

Chris Gross, Turn On The Jets – Courtney Upshaw, Outside Linebacker, Alabama

Justin Fritze, Turn On The Jets – Mark Barron, Safety, Alabama

Joe Caporoso, Turn On The Jets –  Melvin Ingram, Outside Linebacker, South Carolina

Analysis The opinions of what the Jets will do has only got cloudier in the days leading up to the draft. There is no player who is anywhere near being a consensus pick and no clear cut favorite of the team. Courtney Upshaw, Mark Ingram and Quinton Coples have watched their draft stock fall, while Mark Barron and Michael Floyd have been steadily rising.

I am not abandoning my belief that Ingram will end up on the Jets now. However, could they get him without trading up? It doesn’t sound like he will be a top ten pick, so the only real threat is Seattle at #12. Could the Jets move up to #11 without having to give up their second round pick or should they risk staying put and hoping Ingram falls into their laps?

At this point, it seems like Upshaw should be available at #16, while there is no chance Mark Barron will be. If the Jets want the clear cut top safety in this draft, they are going to have to move up a few spots…maybe even as high as #9, where Carolina remains a logical trade partner given the team’s history of working together.

One last point, do not write off the Jets trading up for Trent Richardson. If you think it is crazy for them to trade up into the top five and make that big of a splash, you haven’t been watching Mike Tannenbaum the past 6 years.

Here are my projections for the Jets first round pick, in descending order of likelihood:

5. Stay Put Or Trade Up For Michael Floyd – If he is there at 16, he will be very tempting. If he gets near 16 and the Jets miss on Ingram and Barron, they could consider doing what it takes to get him.

4. Trade Up For Mark Barron – He isn’t getting to number 16. The Jets could swap picks with Carolina at #9 to have a shot at the draft’s top safety.

3. Stay Put And Take Courtney Upshaw or Chandler Jones – If the Jets miss out on Ingram and Barron, I don’t think they risk trading back. They will take whomever they have rated higher, Upshaw or Jones with their pick.

2. Trade Up For Trent RichardsonThe mega deal that Mike Tannenbaum is known for. The Jets get themselves an elite back to lead their Ground and Pound. It will cost them but if Richardson turns into an All-Pro, isn’t it worth it?

1. Stay Put Or Trade Up For Melvin Ingram – Ingram may fall to the Jets at 16 but they could avoid the risk of losing him by trading up to #11.

NFL Mock Draft: What Pick Each Team Should Make

Chris Gross gives his first round mock for the NFL Draft, based on what selection each team should make

Staff writer Chris Gross submits his mock draft, based on what pick he thinks each NFL team should make in round one. Stay tuned later for my mock draft 4.0, rounding up recent mock drafts and giving my final prediction for what I think the Jets will do – JC

With countless mock drafts surfacing over numerous media outlets leading up to Thursday night, the common theme seems to be predicting what every team is most likely to do. However, there are so many aspects that are impossible to predict for every NFL team during the draft. Therefore, that will not be my approach in this mock. Instead, I will actually play GM for every NFL team and select which player each of them should pick, rather than who I think they will pick. I will not account for trades, other than ones that have already been made, because if I get into which teams should make trades and to where, it will get far too sticky. Again, this is not how I think the draft will play out, but rather how I think it should play out.

1 – Indianapolis Colts – Andrew Luck, QB Stanford – The Colts have already told Luck that he will be the first overall selection on Thursday night, and rightfully so. They took one of the biggest gambles in NFL history this offseason, agreeing to part ways with the man that rebuilt the franchise from the ground up. They need to be extremely smart with this pick, because if it flops, the fan base in Indianapolis will likely form a mutiny against Jim Irsay, especially if Manning proves to be healthy and effective in Denver. That being said, Luck is easily the most logical, and safest choice at number one. Sure, Robert Griffin III is appealing for all of his intangibles, but Luck not only has the ability to be an elite NFL quarterback very soon, but he also possesses the confidence and leadership qualities that will help make the transition from Peyton Manning in Indy much less difficult.

2 – Washington Redskins – Robert Griffin III, QB Baylor – Washington made this trade to get Griffin, and that was exactly what they needed to do in this draft. Griffin will give the Skins the face the franchise has been starving for. Owner Daniel Snyder has made a name for himself by overpaying veteran free agents that have rarely worked out. However, Washington has drafted well recently (Brian Orakpo, Ryan Kerrigan, Roy Helu). He has begun to build this team the right way, through the draft, and selecting RGIII will be the most significant step in that process.

3 – Minnesota Vikings – Justin Blackmon, WR Oklahoma State – I realize Matt Kalil is probably the safest pick for a team that needs more lanes for Adrian Peterson, and protection for their young quarterback, Christian Ponder. However, other than Peterson and Percy Harvin, who is constantly hampered by migraines, what other playmakers does this team have on offense? Minnesota hasn’t had elite talent at WR since the departure of Randy Moss, and I believe Blackmon is too great a talent for them to pass on. He will give Ponder another much needed weapon, while spreading out defenses more, which in turn, will help Peterson and the run game.

4 – Cleveland Browns – Trent Richardson, RB Alabama – Offensively, the Browns are a disaster. They have massive questions at Quarterback, and their best offensive player, Running Back Peyton Hillis, bolted for Kansas City. The only bright spot on this offense is Tackle Joe Thomas. Not only is this a smart pick for Cleveland, because they should be doing nothing but selecting the best player available here, but it also fills a great need. Richardson is going to be elite at the next level, and there is no better way to rebuild an offense than with a strong running game.

5 -Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Luke Kuechly, LB Boston College – Everyone loves Morris Claiborne here, and rightfully so. Claiborne is the best CB in the draft, and the Bucs are a little light in the secondary. However, can anyone name Tampa’s starting inside linebackers? Kuechly is the best in this year’s class, and new coach Greg Schiano, a former linebacker at Bucknell, should not hesitate to draft the potential Quarterback of his defense for the next decade. Some might consider this a reach, but do you really see any reason 500+ career tackles should fall out of the top 5?

6 – St. Louis Rams – Matt Kalil, OT USC – The Rams could address their need at WR with Floyd here, but it is time for them to start considering the future of their young Quarterback, Sam Bradford. Jason Smith hasn’t turned into the elite protector they thought he would be when they took him with the 2nd overall pick in 2009. Bradford played in only 10 games last season due to injury, but in those 10 games, he was sacked an astounding 36 times. The Rams need not to hesitate on taking Kalil to prevent Bradford from becoming the next David Carr or (gasp) Chad Pennington.

7 – Jacksonville Jaguars – Michael Floyd, WR Notre Dame – Jacksonville could easily address its much needed pass rush here, but the idea of giving second year quarterback Blaine Gabbert a big target like Floyd is too great to pass up. As much as the defense is in need of help, so too is the offense in need of a playmaker outside of Maurice Jones-Drew and Mercedes Lewis. New owner Shahid Khan needs to find a way to prevent blacking out games in Jacksonville, and there is no better way to put people in the seats then grabbing a high profile offensive player. This move makes both football and business sense.

8 – Miami Dolphins – Morris Claiborne, CB LSU – I realize that the Dolphins greatest need is at quarterback, and I am actually a fan of Ryan Tannehill, just not at this pick. If the Dolphins trade back and grab him that could suffice, however Claiborne’s value here is extremely high, and Miami would be foolish to pass him up. Claiborne has elite talent and would provide an instant upgrade to a secondary that struggled last season. If Miami is smart, it passes on Tannehill, who I feel is a boom or bust prospect, takes Claiborne, and holds hope of landing Matt Barkley next year, whom they’ve wanted all along.

9 – Carolina Panthers – Fletcher Cox, DT Mississippi State – I’ve said before, I think Cox is on another level in terms of defensive lineman in this year’s class. Defensive Tackle is the greatest need for Carolina, and this is great value for this year’s top dog. Cox is fast, strong, explosive, and aggressive and should be able to make an impact immediately.

10 – Buffalo Bills – Riley Reiff, OT Iowa – Buffalo has needed an elite left tackle for years now, and Reiff has to potential to provide that down the road. The Bills made the big splash this offseason with the Mario Williams signing, now it is time to address its most pressing need. Reiff will provide stability to help Ryan Fitzpatrick get the ball to the playmakers (Jackson, Spiller, Johnson) on offense.

11 – Kansas City Chiefs – Dontari Poe, DT Memphis – Although I am not sold on Poe, and do think his skill set will serve him much better in a 4-3, rather than the 3-4 scheme that Kansas City runs, I feel his intangibles and potential as a NT are too much for new head coach Romeo Crennel to pass up. Although Poe is very much a boom or bust product as well, Crennel and KC should take a chance on this one. Poe has the size (348 lbs) and strength (44 reps) to develop into an elite NT in this league. This will certainly take time, but if it works out, Poe will be another building block in Kansas City establishing an elite defense.

12 – Seattle Seahawks – Melvin Ingram, DE South Carolina – Although I think Ingram is better suited as a 3-4 DE/OLB hybrid, there is no doubt in my mind his abilities will allow him to excel in any scheme. Seattle is another team in need of a pass rusher and Ingram is arguably the best available here. He has the ability to move around the defense and will be an asset for years to come in Seattle.

13 – Arizona Cardinals – Quinton Coples, DE/OLB North Carolina – To me, Coples hasn’t been consistently productive enough throughout college. This does not mean he won’t succeed at the next level. His intangibles give him tremendous upside, and he could become a dominant pass rusher in the right system, especially in the NFC West. Some view Coples as a better fit in a 4-3, however his speed and athleticism could make him a perfect fit as a DE/OLB hybrid.

14 – Dallas Cowboys – Mark Barron, S Alabama – It is no secret Dallas needs help in the defensive secondary. Safety is the biggest need, and Barron is the best of the bunch this year. Jerry Jones should not hesitate on taking the Alabama product because if he doesn’t, division rival Philadelphia will be waiting at pick 15 right behind them.

15 – Philadelphia Eagles – David DeCastro, G Stanford – Philly has more pressing needs at defensive tackle and outside linebacker, but no one can deny the beating that Michael Vick took last year. Vick certainly doesn’t help his own cause with the amount of running he does, but DeCastro should provide more stability on the offensive front, allowing Vick to sit in the pocket just a bit longer. Tackle could be addressed, but the Eagles just signed free agent Demetress Bell.

16 – New York Jets – Courtney Upshaw, DE/OLB Alabama – I’ve said it all along, and I am sticking with my pick until the end, if Upshaw is available, he should be the Jets’ pick. His experience, ability, and leadership skills will make him an asset in Rex Ryan’s scheme, and he will fill the need that the Jets have had on defense since Ryan’s arrival. How could you not want the Defensive MVP of College Football’s National Championship game?

17 – Cincinnati Bengals – Dre Kirkpatrick, CB Alabama – Cornerback probably isn’t the biggest need for Cincinnati but pairing Kirkpatrick with Leon Hall will greatly bolster their secondary. The Bengals just resigned S Reggie Nelson, and at pick 17 the value is far too high to pass up the first team All American.

18 – San Diego Chargers – Chandler Jones, DE Syracuse – Jones’s stock is rapidly rising as draft day approaches, and some don’t see him making it past the Jets at 16, so his value here could be fantastic. San Diego has not had an elite pass rusher since Shawn Merriman’s “Lights Out” Days, but Chandler could finally revitalize that. He has the physical tools and size to develop into an elite OLB/DE in San Diego’s system.

19 – Chicago Bears – Michael Brockers, DE, LSU – Defensive Line is a big need for the Bears, and Brockers is the best available here. His physical intangibles and violent play will make him a great fit in front of Urlacher and Briggs.

20 – Tennessee Titans, Dont’a Hightower, ILB Alabama – Tennessee made a great move to improve their defense this offseason by signing Kamerion Wimbley. They have solid youngsters in the secondary between Michael Griffin and Jason McCourty, while Akeem Ayers still has potential to develop into a good OLB. Now they just need someone to be the foundation in the middle. Hightower’s value is amazing here, as I said I think he is worthy of a top 15 pick. Tennessee would be adding to a quality, up and coming defense.

21 – Cincinnati Bengals – Kendall Wright, WR Baylor – The Bengals overhauled their offense last year, and for the better. Andy Dalton and AJ Green have the makings of a deadly combo for years to come. Now it is time to add some speed opposite Green to really open the offense up. Cincinnati was smart in adding Benjarvus Green-Ellis this offseason to sure up the run game, and Wright will add another dynamic to the passing attack.

22 – Cleveland Browns – Ryan Tannehill, QB Texas A&M – As I said earlier, I like Tannehill, just not as a top 10 pick. Here, his value is so much higher, and the Browns are reportedly in love with him. Odds are Tannehill’s inflated stock will have him picked well before here, but if he is available at 22, you can bet everything that the Browns will take him, as they should. Let’s face it, Colt McCoy is not the answer, and Tannehill’s ceiling is through the roof.

23 – Detroit Lions – Stephon Gilmore, CB South Carolina – Detroit has one of the most, if not THE most, dominant Defensive Lines in all of football. Adding a true number one corner to their secondary could put them among the NFL’s best defenses. Chris Houston is decent, but he needs help opposite him. Gilmore would start immediately, and has the potential to make a significant impact as a rookie.

24 – Pittsburgh Steelers – Cordy Glenn, G Georgia – Pittsburgh needs help up front, and pairing Glenn next to Center Maurkice Pouncey would give them a dominant interior in front of Roethlisberger and Co. Running Back could be another option, with Mendenhall hampered by the ACL injury, however, that can be filled in one of the later rounds.

25 – Denver Broncos – Coby Fleener, TE Stanford – Peyton Manning loves a good, athletic Tight End and Fleener is the best of this year’s class. If you haven’t already, check out this kid’s “Sports Science.” Strong, fast, explosive, and huge. His physical tools are scary, and having come from Stanford, he shouldn’t have a problem adjusting to Peyton Manning mentally.

26 – Houston Texans – Nick Perry, DE/OLB USC – Houston lost both DeMeco Ryans and Mario Williams this offseason, so they are a little light at the linebacker position. Their defensive line is extremely young and talented. JJ Watt proved he will be a force for years to come with an impressive rookie campaign last year. Putting Perry next to fellow USC LB Brian Cushing will give Wade Phillips one of the youngest, most athletic front sevens in the NFL.

27 – New England Patriots – Harrison Smith, S Notre Dame – Is it just me or is the safety play in the AFC East among the worst in the NFL? Like the Jets, New England struggled immensely at safety last year, even to the point where Ross Ventrone began to see time. Smith provides immediate upgrade, and is the big, physical, athletic safety that this defense has been missing since Rodney Harrison.

28 – Green Bay Packers – Shea McClellin, OLB Boise State – Other than Clay Matthews, there is no one on the Packers defense capable of rushing the passer. Putting McClellin (7 sacks in 2011) opposite Matthews could give Green Bay one of the best edge rushing defenses in all of football. McClellin is still somewhat raw, but will benefit from teams constantly game planning around Matthews.

29 – Baltimore Ravens – Peter Konz, C Wisconsin – Baltimore just resigned Matt Birk to a 3-year deal, but they need to plan for his retirement. Grooming a young center will provide a seamless transition when Birk finally decides to hang them up. Konz is the best available, and has good value at this point.

30 – San Francisco 49ers – Janoris Jenkins, CB North Alabama – San Francisco is returning 11 starters on defense, which is unheard of in the NFL. There is a need at WR, but the team just spent a lot of money at that position in Free Agency, so they should improve the only shallow spot on their defense. Jenkins has the potential to be an absolute steal here, and could learn a lot under the veteran leadership of Carlos Rogers.

31 – New England Patriots – Kendall Reyes, DT/DE UConn – Reyes reportedly has a great relationship with Bill Belichick, who frequents visits to UConn, and for good reason. Reyes is a perfect fit in a Belichick type system. He is a very smart, very versatile player, with tremendous upside that can play multiple positions along the defensive front. New England lost DE Mark Anderson to Buffalo this offseason, so this is a position of need as well.

32 – New York Giants – Jonathon Martin, OT Stanford – Although the Giants are the defending Super Bowl Champs, they struggled to protect Eli Manning at times last year. Kareem McKenzie is gone, and I do not think the Giants are too fond of the idea of Will Beatty (AKA Wayne Hunter 2.0) entering the season as the starting RT. Martin should play immediately and will learn a ton from New York’s veteran offensive line.

Turn On The Jets 2012 NFL Draft Hub

Your one stop for everything you need to know about the New York Jets and the 2012 NFL Draft

Here at Turn On The Jets we have taken the time to break down every position the New York Jets could target in the upcoming NFL Draft, from the areas they could focus on with the 16th overall pick to what they will do with their compensatory picks in the 6th and 7th round. We have also argued the merits and faults of numerous prospects frequently associated with them, talked about trading up to as high as number three along with trading out of the first round altogether. Basically, yes…we have it all covered…and we won’t be stopping anytime soon. Make sure you are following both myself and staff writer Chris Gross on Twitter and of course here on the site.

Positional Analysis

Mock Drafts

Specific Prospects

In the coming days, I will publish our Mock Draft 4.0, rounding up all the updated mock drafts and giving my final projection on what the Jets will do in the first round. Chris Gross has a mock draft for the entire first round. We will both offer finals thoughts/updates/observations, along with have one last debate on Courtney Upshaw versus Melvin Ingram. Finally, I will be live blogging the first round of the draft here on the site along with giving instant analysis of the Jets selection and then Friday Chris and myself will prepare you for round two and three.

Stay tuned…