It’s nearly impossible–no it IS impossible–to accurately predict what every team in the draft is going to do when Roger Goodell takes the podium (BOOO!!!) on Thursday night. But that can’t stop us from hoping certain things are going to happen before John Idzik hands in his first card as General Manager of the New York Jets, right? As we know, the Jets hold the 9th and 13th picks in this year’s first round, and if things break right, the 2013 draft could go a long way towards turning this team around. Let’s break down the things we WANT to see happen before the Jets are on the clock, so that the team is left with the best possible options.
1. Chiefs: Luke Joeckel, OT – This pick is almost set in stone, as the Chiefs are looking to add a franchise Left Tackle as they prepare to move on from Brandon Albert. The other option here would be Eric Fisher. The Jets are not in the market for a Left Tackle, so this is good news.
2. Jaguars: Eric Fisher, OT – As I was saying, the Jets aren’t in the market for a tackle, so any that go in the top 8 are beneficial for their chances of landing a player they need more. What we don’t want here is for the Jaguars to take Dion Jordan, but unfortunately there’s a pretty good chance that is what is going to happen. Keep your fingers crossed Jordan slips as the Jags opt for the “safe” offensive tackle.
3. Raiders: Shariff Floyd, DT - This is another pick that seems to be a lock, as the Raiders are supposedly very high on Floyd. This would bode well for the Jets, as Floyd is more of a 4-3 DT and is a bit undersized to play the nose tackle position that Rex Ryan would be looking for. So far, so good.
4. Eagles: Geno Smith, QB – Some may disagree with me here, but I’m not particularly high on Geno Smith and wouldn’t want the Jets to take him at #9. Therefore, I’m hoping the rumors that Chip Kelly is looking long and hard at the QB are true and they snatch him up here at #4 as better options for the Jets slip down the board. Plus, I don’t want him on the board for the Bills, as I have a much more hilarious (and realistic) QB option for them at #8.
5. Lions: Ezekiel Ansah, DE – The Lions lost both their starting Defensive Ends this offseason and are reportedly very high on the raw lineman out of BYU. Dion Jordan could also be an option here if he sticks around (which would be bad), and the other possibility would be going offensive line with this pick and taking the best available tackle, Lane Johnson (which would be good). It’s looking increasingly likely that Johnson will be off the board by the time the Jets pick, which again is a good thing, since the Jets have D’Brickashaw Ferguson manning that spot.
6. Browns: Dee Milliner, CB - Hey did you hear the Jets just lost a cornerback? Darryl something-or-other. I heard he was pretty good. Anyway, that doesn’t mean the Jets need to automatically go out and draft a corner in the first round. In fact, with the excellent Antonio Cromartie and so-so Kyle WIlson (who I don’t like, but still) on the roster already, there are much more pressing needs. Seriously, take a look at the roster. The top rated corner going off the board here at #6 would be good news for the Jets. Not so good news would be if the Browns went with a pass rusher like Jordan, Ansah, or dare I say, Mingo here. That would stink.
7. Cardinals: Lane Johnson, OT – If the Lions don’t go for Johnson at #5, he very well could go off the board here at #7 to Arizona. The Cardinals offensive line is an absolute mess and that could cause them to reach for a tackle, or maybe go with one of the two stud guards, Chance Warmack or Jonathan Cooper, although this would be awfully early for that. Other options would be a defensive tackle like Star Lotulelei, or a pass rusher such as Ansah or Jordan if they’re still on the board. A long-shot would be one of the QB’s such as Barkley or Nassib, but that would be quite a reach and with the recent trade for Carson Palmer, an unlikely one. The only reason I’d like to see Lane Johnson hang around for the Jets is so that a tackle-needy team such as San Diego could offer a ton to move up for him when the Jets are on the clock.
8. Bills: Ryan Nassib, QB – This would make me extremely happy as a Jets fan for a variety of reasons. First, Ryan Nassib isn’t that good and it will make me genuinely laugh when it’s announced. Second, it would be a major reach. Third, it would set the Bills back further than they already are for a few years. Fourth, Buddy Nix. Fifth, it would be hilarious to see the NY media with heavy ties to Syracuse make excuses for the Bills and their new HC/QB combo. Sixth, it would drop another prospect down for the Jets to potentially select. Seventh, it would be cause for a round of shots at the bar (drink responsibly, everyone!). I’m sure I can come up with a few more, but I’ll stop there. Let’s hope this is the pick and that they don’t go with Tavon Austin.
9. JETS: Ok, that would leave the Jets with a variety of options if the Perfect World Draft broke down like this. Here they are:
- Draft Dion Jordan or Barkevious Mingo, OLB – These two guys are at the top of my wish list, and while Jordan is likely to be snatched up earlier (at #2, #4, or #6 most likely), its not unrealistic to think he COULD slip. Mingo is most likely going to be around at #9 and if he is, it should take Idzik about 0.3 seconds to turn in his card. This would raise the Jets defensive rating quite a few Tebows!
- Draft Tavon Austin, WR – The Jets clearly need playmakers on offense and Austin is the top playmaker in this draft. He’s a home run hitter who can score from anywhere on the field, and that will make things much easier for whoever the hell is playing QB this year. I’d prefer to address the pass rush first and hope for Austin at #13, however, but that may not be possible.
- Draft Warmack or Cooper, OG – I wouldn’t love taking a Guard this high, but it’s certainly a possibility considering the starting guards as of now are Willie Colon and Vlad Freakin’ Ducasse. I imagine Idzik would rather wait until later in the draft to take a lineman, or if the team is dead set on one of these two studs, wait til #13.
- Trade Down - A trade down is always a possibility, and there are a few players other teams may deem worth of moving up for, such as Austin, one of the pass rushes, or Star Lotulelei.
10. Titans: Jonathan Cooper, OG – The Titans are reportedly extremely high on Cooper, and he could surpass Warmack as the top Guard taken. As long as one of these guys is around at #13 as an option for the Jets, we are ok with this.
11. Chargers: DJ Fluker, OT – This would be a major reach, but with the tackles flying off the board, the Chargers may be forced to make this their pick. They are desperate for offensive line help as to avoid making Phil Rivers the first on field casualty in 2013. Seriously, their line is atrocious. I don’t think Fluker is worth this high of a pick, but he’s starting to generate some buzz heading into the draft. Other options here could be Tavon Austin or one of the pass rushers, which wouldn’t be quite as good for the Jets just two picks away.
12. Dolphins: Xavier Rhodes, CB – The Dolphins badly need some cornerback help, and many have Rhodes as the top CB in this draft after Milliner. They filled a bunch of holes through free agency, but corner is still a problem area, so look for the Fins to address that here. Again, I don’t think the Jets are going to be looking at a corner in the first round, so this would be a fine selection. A pass rusher is also a possibility, perhaps someone like Tank Carradine, which is a rumor that has very recently started to heat up. I’m fine with that.
13. JETS: That brings us back to the Jets and their second 1st-round pick here at #13, and there would be many options available to them.
- Draft Tavon Austin, WR – If the Jets don’t take him at #9 and he slips through the next three picks, taking him here at #13 would make a ton of sense.
- Draft Tyler Eifert, TE – Taking Eifert at #13 may seem like a bit of a reach, but the Jets badly need a Tight End who can make plays and stretch the field. Eifert is a huge man, he’s fast and athletic, and he can do both of those things for a team in the NFL. Ideally the Jets will be able to move down a little in the first round before taking Eifert, but I wouldn’t hate this pick at all.
- Trade Down – I think this is what John Idzik wants to do the most, and will explore any and all possibilities to do so. There could be many desirable players available in this spot for teams to move up for including Austin, Start Lotulelei, or Sheldon Richardson.
- Draft Warmack or Cooper, OG – Hopefully one of these guys is still around at #13, either as an option for the Jets to pick, or maybe as a target of a team looking to trade up.
- Draft Star Lotulelei, DT – I don’t think DL is a priority for the Jets in this draft, but we know Rex likes his big guys up front, and with Sione Po’uha gone, this could be a possibility.
So there you have it. The 2013 Jets Perfect World Draft and how all Jets fans should be rooting for things to play out once Roger Goodell takes the podium and gets booed mercilessly. Enjoy the draft, everyone. And be sure to let us know who you want to see the team end up with here in the comments or on Twitter.