New York Jets NFL Draft Roundtable – February Edition

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The NFL Draft is still over two months away (sad face). However, that doesn’t mean we aren’t going to discuss it endlessly until then. In today’s roundtable, we are lucky enough to be joined by Scott Salmon of Gang Green Nation and Ryan Alfieri of The Bleacher Report to discuss the New York Jets and the NFL Draft. Enjoy and make sure to give them both a follow, if you haven’t already!

Most people are assuming the Jets will add a WR or TE with the 18th overall pick, do you think these positions are being too focused on and if so is there another position they could potentially get better value at #18?

Scott Salmon -  When it comes to the New York Jets, you should expect the unexpected. The fact that everyone is so focused on wide receiver and tight end, as you suggested, tells me the team probably won’t go in that direction. I suspect there could be a few good defenders on the board, such as Kony Ealy, Anthony Barr, Dee Ford, C.J. Mosley, Calvin Pryor, etc. I’m not saying those specific players will certainly be available, but it’s possible and they might be better options, considering how deep the receiving class is in this draft.

Ryan Alfieri -  It does make a ton of sense to go with a WR or TE in round 1 given the depth of those two positions near the top, but as Sheldon Richardson proved last year, taking the best player trumps positional need. If there is a better, say, CB or linebacker available, the Jets should not hesitate to take the better player.

I think WR and TE are by far the weakest units on the team, but given the status of Antonio Cromartie and age of Calvin Pace, taking a defensive back or linebacker is certainly in play.

Joe Caporoso - It feels like we have been waiting forever for the Jets to add a tight end or wide receiver with an early round draft pick (excuse me for blocking out the memory of Stephen Hill). Considering the talent available at wide receiver and tight end, it is fair to assume in early mock drafts that the Jets will target one of those positions. However, I do agree on sticking with the best player available. There is excellent depth in this year’s wide receiver class and some intriguing 2nd and 3rd prospects at tight end, so the Jets shouldn’t hesitate to grab a linebacker or safety if their evaluations show a superior prospect is available to the pass catchers on the board at #18.

The Jets have two third round picks and are likely to have multiple picks in the 4th or 5th round, if not both, thanks to compensatory selections. What positions have the best value in the middle rounds this year?

Scott Salmon -  There are a lot of decent running backs this year that might interest the team after the first round, such as Lache Seastrunk, Charles Sims, Andre Williams, Terrance West, De’Anthony Thomas, Dri Archer, etc. The same is true of tight ends, such as Austin Seferian-Jenkins, C.J. Fiedorwicz, Marcel Jensen, Colt Lyerla, etc

Ryan Alfieri -  I think this is a very deep draft overall, especially at the receiver and outside linebacker positions. There are a handful of middle-round safeties that could be good value as well, but there is a ton of speedy gadget players that would be a huge boost for the Jets.

Joe Caporoso - I love the depth at receiver, cornerback and safety. This is why I wouldn’t be surprised if the Jets passed on a wide receiver with the 18th overall pick. They may be able to get a player who can be immediately productive (especially considering their current depth chart) in round 3 or 4.

In terms of a fit for this roster, what one player do you want to see selected the most? 

Scott Salmon -  I’m leaning towards RB Dri Archer. He’s a game breaking talent that will give Geno Smith a Tavon Austin-like presence on the roster. Archer can work from the backfield or split out wide, and is one of the best returners in the country. He is an electric player and on a team without any such playmakers, is a fantastic fit for the team.

Ryan Alfieri -  I believe Marqise Lee would be a perfect replacement for Santonio Holmes. He’s a tremendous athlete who does something a lot of Jets receivers have had trouble with recently—getting seperation.

If his knee checks out, he could be great value in the first round. Remember, he was up there with Sammy Watkins as the best receiver in the country two years ago.

Joe Caporoso - I know I mentioned passing on a receiver at #18 in my previous two responses but wow would I love to see Mike Evans in this offense. The Jets have long needed a big, physical receiver who will fight for contested balls and help bail their quarterback out. His game still needs some fine tuning but he would an immediate threat in the redzone and always a viable option in single coverage against smaller defensive backs.

16 thoughts on “New York Jets NFL Draft Roundtable – February Edition

  1. My greatest desire is Jared Abbrederis. I am at the point where I hate any press he receives and any ties he has to the pros. (For example, Russell Wilson was Abbrederis’s QB in 2011, the year Jared caused massive problems for Chip Kelly’s Oregon Ducks when he went against them in their bowl game.)

    A close second is Dominique Easley. He just seems like he was meant to play for Rex alongside Richardson, Coples, Harrison, and Wilkerson.

    Charles Sims is a solid third. Lightning fast, good pass catcher, and good pass-protection, Sims is not only everything we need to complete our stable, he also has the potential to knock off Powell and compete with Ivory for lead back.

  2. I dismiss the idea of a safety in round 1 simply because I don’t believe Rex, or the Jets necessarily want to spend a high pick or big money on one and IMO, all you have to do is look at last year’s draft to prove it: The Jets had 2 opportunities in round 1 to select 1, if not both of the top rated safeties in last year’s draft (Eric Reid, Kenny Vaccaro) and they passed on BOTH of them.

    Say what you want to, both, or even one of them, would have looked real nice in NY Jet green for a very long time, given what they did their rookie seasons.

    I am also not a big fan of BPA. What happens this year if the BPA is an OT, C or say a D-lineman. You are going to have a hard time convincing people you are doing right for the team by drafting another d-lineman. On defense, the only position you would convince people why you took them is if you took a 3-4 OLB (pass rusher). Get a WR, TE, or trade back and pick up extra selections.

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  4. True BPA is a myth. It must have the caveat of need for that position. Most overused, inappropriately-used term in the NFL. I’m convinced most people use it to sound cool. But I digress.

    I’d love to see these great TE prospects in the 2nd-3rd round but they don’t exist in the 2014 draft. Sorry, but that’s a fact. There are a couple of very good blocking TE’s but none that can gain separation and take a top off the middle of the field to give your WR’s more passing lanes and keep creeping run-help safeties pushed back.
    There are only 3 such TE’s in this draft that can be counted on to start from day one, which by the way, we need to give Geno a proper outlet and 2nd-3rd passing option.

    Sorry if this sounds harsh as I know you guys so badly want to take a WR or something with more glitter than a TE with the 1st pick but no one can justify that (that I’ve seen). There is no one in FA.
    A blocking TE isn’t going to cut it.

  5. BPA looks great when your evaluation comes up right, ala Sheldon Richardson. However, let’s say Sheldon Richardson turned out to be…say Mike Williams, the 3rd consecutive top 10 pick Detroit used on a WR (they actually took a 1st round WR in 4/5 drafts..finally connecting on Megatron). I’m sure they thought they were taking the BPA. I’m sure the NYG felt D Wilson was the BPA 2 yrs ago too.

    I agree to Joe’s point, to an extent. If the Jets get to 18, and there is a top 5 guy still left, say like Ts Robinson or Matthews, then I can see it. However, if you don’t feel like you’re getting an immediate impact guy, I don’t think you must subscribe to that theory. When Seattle took Bruce Irvin 2 years ago, people questioned that pick, but that was the BPA at work. How’s that pick looking now?

    I don’t know if I’ll go as far, as John X, saying ‘BPA is a myth’, but the term is certainly thrown around too much, IMO. I’ll bet if you poll the GMs after the 1st round, 80% would tell you they got the BPA, on their board.

    As for a wish list, I like Donte Moncrief. I’m also a fan of Will Sutton.

  6. BPA also factors in the importance of the position. A center or safety might be head and shoulders above the next best guy at their position, but the impact the position has hurts their draft status.

    On the other hand, a DE or QB will be more likely to be considered BPA because of the importance of the position.

    The only reason to cross off a position from BPA is if you can say with certainty that the position is locked up for the next 3 years with what we already have. For this reason the only position the Jets won’t draft is another 3-4 DE. I can even see them taking a NT if someone like Louis Nix falls.

    Scott, I love Dri Archer. I think he would be a great fit on the Jets, but don’t think he is anything like Tavon. He is a RB, not a WR. In fact his receiving stats are terrible out of the backfield. I think MM would use him right and his absolute floor is still being a quality return man. He is small but he plays tough. Definitely more football player than track star.

  7. Drew,

    With the holes on the team, you, as the GM select a NT (Nix) with the 1st pick. Let’s say for the sake of argument that Harrison beats him out for starting time and continues to play well. Now you have a 1st rounder on the bench and you’re passing game is still struggling because you didn’t address what everyone was screaming for – offensive weapons. Geno is now spiraling and not developing as he should and now that position (QB) is in danger of needing replacement since his confidence is being shot.
    How are you going to explain to everyone that your BPA selection worked out? Hey: we have 2 great NT’s, isn’t that cool? This for the #4 run defense in the league last season while your #31 passing offense continues to flounder. Great selection, GM! Start packing your bags.

    And even if Nix worked out, Harrison is a known quantity – a pro-bowl caliber young NT who knows his worth and will demand to be traded once his UDFA deal expires which is less than the 4-5 year window of a drafted player. So in a year or 2, you’ll only have Nix to show for your BPA selection and no guarantee he’ll be better and definitely will command more money to extend which stresses your funds overall for the DLine.

    These are the things you must consider with every pick and is why this mythical BPA is the biggest load of crap I’ve ever heard. There is so much calculation that goes into each and every pick with ramifications that you and I don’t consider. Money slotting, age, depth, overall experience at a position, health of backups, expectations of players on the roster, schemes…the list goes on and on – to believe that these GM’s flippantly select the guy they like best without consideration towards ANYTHING is more than naïve IMO.

    I don’t see us taking a NT, C, LT, DE, QB, RB with the first round pick in the draft.
    But you can still believe.

  8. This is a little left field, but I’m tired of throwaway guys at FB. It shouldn’t be too hard to find a guy who can block, catch and rumble for a few extra yards. MM always made good use of a FB/H-Back. Not here. We don’t have the guy. Bohanon seems a likeable musclehead but he’s no threat back there. I’d like to see this addressed sometime in the draft. Just get someone the defense has to consider as a possibility.

  9. @JX

    If the effectiveness of one first-round pick in his rookie year determines the fate of the team that year, that team was screwed to begin with. If the same applied to all teams, 90% of them would have a wasted year (the remaining 10% being teams that draft players in the running for rookie of the year).

    Taking a NT like Nix might not be ideal, but as everyone jumps to remind me and others when we bring up trading Ellis, NTs get hurt all the time and we should therefore stockpile them. Ellis and Harrison may both move on in two years, so we will need a replacement anyway.

  10. I tend to agree with John X. At #18 overall, you should not be drafting a “depth” guy at NT, even if he is BPA. The guy you draft at #18 overall should be an instant, day one starter.

    If you want a NT fine, take that person in the 3rd or 4th round. If the majority of this year’s draft is not offensive skill position players, something is wrong.

  11. If the NT gets to 18, and the NYJ have him as the ‘BPA’, by a wide margin, it’s likely there are teams behind them who have that same rating. To me, that’s where you trade down and pick up extra picks.

  12. Geronimo,

    Great points regarding likeable musclehead FB’s in general. It’s a reasonable rant as Bohanon probably eluded one defender the entire season. They don’t have to think about him. I’d keep an eye on Gerhart from the Vikes as he’s probably not the blocker Tommy is but can do so much more – he might be a worthy signing.
    There’s also a good FB at Stanford projected as a 6th rounder who seems to be more of a threat than ours.

  13. Sorry JX, NT was supposed to be an extreme example. My point is that any position that is not certain for the next three years should be considered when drafting BPA.

    Harrison and Ellis are in contract years so if they aren’t locked up before the draft then the position is not set for 3 years.

    The idea is that the fewer positions you are open to drafting in a given round the more likely you are to reach.

    With that said, drafting for need is fine later on. A reach in the first is much more costly than one in the third.

  14. I’d like to see them take a QB.

    A football team is not going anywhere without a franchise QB and I don’t believe Geno is, nor ever will be, a franchise QB. That’s the only thing that could get me excited about this draft – seeing them maneuver to take one.

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