New York Jets NFL Draft – 9 Players For #9

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The New York Jets currently have the 9th pick in the first round of the NFL Draft. There is speculation swirling that they could also end up with the 13th pick via a trade of Darrelle Revis, yet for now let’s just focus on their definite, singular first round pick. Here are 9 names that make sense for the Jets either with their 9th pick or via a trade down with the 9th pick as the centerpiece.

Barkevious Mingo – DE/OLB – LSU -  Arguably the pass rusher and outside linebacker who best matches up with the Jets need and their draft position. Mingo would provide good value at #9 and fill a glaring hole on the Jets defense. A closer look at Mingo’s tape shows his game is much more well-rounded than many initially assume. Despite a drop in sack production last year, he showed an ability to set the edge in the running game and be a key movable chess piece in the LSU defense. Mingo has a high ceiling and is the type of player who can develop into a needed game changer off the edge for the Jets defense.

Dion Jordan – DE/OLB – OregonMost assume Jordan will be gone by the Jets 9th pick but considering how wide open the first round is going to be, who knows who will actually slide down further than expected? Jordan is an unbelievable athlete and would provide a huge shot of speed off the edge to a Jets defense desperately in need of it. While his game needs some fine-tuning for a full time transition to NFL outside linebacker, he’d be excellent value for the Jets with the 9th pick and provide them with a freakish athlete at linebacker…something they have been lacking for years.

Ziggy Ansah – DE/OLB – BYU An immensely athletic, versatile player who could be a factor for the Jets at both linebacker and defensive end. Ansah is a little raw and some would consider him a reach at #9 but considering how the board breaks in front of them, he could be a worthwhile risk. Ansah would likely be better suited to begin as a situational player on the Jets defense rather than a full-time starter.

Jarvis Jones – OLB – GeorgiaThere was some hesitation to put Jones on this list considering how he is sliding down most Draft Boards and his questionable fit in a 3-4 but considering his production in college and the potential for him to be targeted if the Jets trade down, he is included. Jones has questions about his health and could have a relatively low ceiling as a 3-4 OLB in the Jets scheme but also has a lower bust potential than the above prospects.

Chance Warmack – OG – AlabamaThis wouldn’t be a sexy or popular pick but depending on how the board breaks, it could be the smartest one. Warmack is one of the safest picks in the upcoming Draft, could step in immediately as a starter at Guard, end any of notion of Vlad Ducasse starting games next year (AMEN) and help take some of the burden off Nick Mangold by putting a potentially elite player next to him in coming years. He is the complete package at OG and would be strong, safe value at #9.

Jonathan Cooper – OG – UNCEverything said above about Warmack applies here except Cooper is a very small cut below him overall as a prospect. If Warmack goes in the top 8 and the Jets want to address their offensive line in the first round Cooper could be an option.

Tavon Austin – WR – West Virginia - There are few sure things in this year’s Draft, one of them is that Tavon Austin is going to be a playmaker at the next level. Despite concerns about his size, Austin has elite speed, quickness and big play ability. He is the type of player who can contribute in a number of ways on offense and special teams. It is doubtful the Jets would take him at #9 despite him being a top ten talent but if they do trade down into the mid-teens, he would be an absolute steal at that spot. The Jets need “wow” guys on offense and Austin has that potential.

Giovanni Bernard – RB – UNCBernard would be a target if the Jets trade down into the low 20s. The Jets desperately need an infusion of speed and playmaking on offense, Bernard could provide that at the running back position and potentially form a home run hitting duo with Mike Goodson. While the Goodson signing was nice, his injury history means the Jets would be foolish to expect 16 games out of him as a lead back. Bernard would be good value anywhere from 20-40 on Draft Day.

EJ Manuel/Geno Smith – QB – Florida State/West Virginia - The Jets would be foolish to even think about taking either of these guys (the top 2 QBs in this year’s class) at #9 but if they trade back, either would make much more sense in the bottom half of round one. Taking a QB in round one would be an easier risk to stomach this year if it is coupled with another first round pick or if the Jets acquire more picks by moving back from #9. Smith and Manuel are second round prospects who will be overdrafted because of a weak QB class, if the Jets can limit that overdrafting by moving back 12-16 spots in round one, it will be easier to justify.

4 thoughts on “New York Jets NFL Draft – 9 Players For #9

  1. 1-Just look at that picture of Mingo. He’s slight. He is going to get beaten up at the next level. Go watch the tape against Alabama and then imagine him against NFL players.

    2-Jordan is really an enticing player. He had good production in college. His speed and agility make you believe he will have an impact on the next level.

    3-Ziggy Ansah-Ok, he’s a great athlete, but nothing, in his tape, suggest he has coverage skills. If he can be a JPP type DLman, than he’s worth it. But, that’s a big if. Would rather miss on his stardom, than explain him as a bust.

    4-Jarvis Jones-I love the guy (you all know this). Had the draft been held the day after the NCAA title game, he’d have gone top 5, maybe top 3. He makes plays. That ability can’t be taught. I think he’ll be an All-Pro.
    As far as his health concerns, all these guys have health concerns, it’s a collision sport. The doctors have cleared him, so let the chips fall.

    5-Chance Warmack-When the biggest argument for drafting a guy this high is only: ‘you can’t take a Guard, at 9′, you need to question the source (sorry). You win in this league with great players. He’s a great player.

    6-Jonathan Cooper-I wouldn’t put him on this list. If Warmack goes, I don’t then the likelihood is one of the Tackles, OLBs, or Loutelei fell. In that case NYJ make a decision on the value of a player at 9, or trading down and acquiring picks and Cooper lower. His agility fits the WC scheme.

    7-Tavon Austin-5’8″/175lbs..no thank you..Joe, I know you think the guy has ‘short area quickness’. Name me another guy, his size who had been a legitimate everydown threat? Harvin is much bigger than this guy. I get he’s quick and very fast. Here is the thing, everyone is quick and fast at the next level. I’m just not convinced his body can take the beating, nor am I convinced he can get off the line of scrimmage. A mid teens pick on a third down/punt returner isn’t a good move.

    8-Giovanni Bernard-unless you’re getting an Adrian Peterson, I think it’s hard to take a RB this high because year after year we see many talented backs picked later. On top of this, they just don’t last. If you’re a parent, how you’d let your son play RB is beyond me. Justin Verlander just got $180mm-GUARANTEED. A great RB might make 10% of that in a career.

    9-EJ Manuel-have never seen him play. If you’re an NFL GM, the toughest decision ever is putting your name to a QB. If I were in that position, I’d want to make sure the guy I was drafting was so hyper competitive, that no matter how much money he was making he’d want to win, at anything and at all costs. In the end, the talent is close. What makes the Mannings, Brady’s, Rogers..et al is their insatiable desire to compete.

  2. I thought this article was an amazing idea from its title. It kind of lost focus when you run out of “No. 9 players” after six and get into trade-down scenarios. For one thing, they are arbitrary. Let me illustrate: if the Jets trade down into the teens, Austin makes a lot of sense, but a host of other players (Vaccaro or Eifert, for example) enter into the equation and make equal sense. Having said that, I do not see why Vaccaro and Eifert did not make this list of nine. They are worth much more consideration than Smith/Manuel.

    But my real suggestion is stick to the title. This is a weird draft and mocks have splintered. Rather than trade-downs, I would have loved to see you address possible players that could drop to #9. The first five entries are great. Cooper can also be added, since he really does seem to be either on par or right behind Warmack talent-wise. But the remaining three picks should consider the possibilities of the likes of Milliner, Floyd/Lotulelei, one of the “elite” tackles, and maybe Geno Smith falling to #9.

  3. Any of the following five players could be a substantial upgrade for the team.

    Dion Jordan
    Jarvis Jones
    Ziggy Ansah
    Tavon Austin
    Chance Warmack

    From these five I like Jordan and Jones because they fill a position of need, but Tavon Austin is special. And I am afraid that he will go well before the Jets have to make their selection. I hope it is not Buffalo!

    I like this guy for what he can offer to the running game, punt returns, kick returns and wide receiver. He is a real weapon, a real threat to score from everywhere at any point in time. This is a guy who never missed a practice or game, and despite his small frame (that some worry about) has never been injured. Players like Tavon Austin require so much attention from defenses that allow other players to have great games. That’s what I call an “impact” player. Someone where his simple presence on the field can improve everybody else’s game.

  4. I have been giving this a lot of thought, and I believe Ansah should be at the top of this list. If he and any other player listed above were still available at #9, I think we should pick him.

    The only OLB that can rival Ansah is Jordan, and I believe the choice between them would be hard. But every other OLB is either a step back or comes with greater concerns/lower potential. Jordan is athletic, fast, has a good frame, is good in coverage, good at pass rushing, can play both OLB and DE. But Ansah is physically the complete package. He is not as developed or experienced as Jordan, but Ansah seems talented in every dimension of the position.

    Unlike the three other elite OLBs this year – Mingo, Jordan, and Jones – Ansah is physical in his game. He likes using his speed, maybe even prefers to use speed, but does not shy away from plain brute force. At his current development, simplifying Ansah’s role seems to be the best way forward; he often gets locked out of plays in those instances when he needs to switch between speed and power moves. But when he played either NT or the three technique, he had success penetrating and drawing double teams. And when he is on the outside, he dazzles with just a little room to work with.

    He is not simply raw; he has yet to be sliced or slaughtered. All of his weaknesses are due to technique or inexperience. The level he will grow to will be decided by how he will be used, and I believe his highest ceiling is with the Jets and Ryan, who will use him in the most versatile ways. His pass rush technique needs work: he is bad at chaining moves, bad at switching between power and speed moves, needs to develop a counter move, can get tired after repeated rushes. He also can let his blockers recover. He needs a lot more experience in coverage: during linebacker drills, he has shown fluid footwork and good change of direction, and he seems to have a nose for the ball (or the ball’s path) during games, but he seems lost because he does not recognize routes and was rarely asked to drop back. His run blocking can also use work: he struggles when linemen step up and challenge him, as his leverage is bad, he can be stood up, and is not always sure how to throw off blockers and penetrate into the backfield. So on run plays, he sometimes battles at the line of scrimmage and is about 50/50 in winning those fights. Again, when he plays tackle and his only path is through the guy, he is very effective at stuffing runs and TFL.

    Ansah is a beast. All of his downsides can be rectified by a coach sitting down with him and explaining what to do. He will benefit from a playbook that gives him a simple, specific task in every instance rather than have him react to the play. Mind you, he reacts well to plays. His play recognition is decent, if not very good. What you want to diminish is his options on every play. His inexperience makes him hesitate.

    With the Jets, I think he will have a Quinton Coples year. He will start off slow and steadily improve. But as he gains experience, he will come into his own. He has come in untrained, adjusted, evolved, and performed at a high level at every point in his athletic life. This was the story with BYU’s track team, the football team, the weight room (this monster apparently weighed 250 before he ever hit the gym two years ago), the Senior Bowl, the Combine. I think that he will transition into the pros, and I hope he does it with us.

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