The New York Jets are expected to have as many as 12 draft picks in May’s draft, barring any trades. With holes to fill across the board, and the Jets opting to not fill some of them through free agency, there are many prospects in play for the Jets.
Arguably the two position groups that many expect to not be affected by the draft are running back and defensive line. However, Mike Goodson’s legal situation is one to be monitored over the next couple of months (as I stated in my ideal off-season, I think he will have to be replaced) so the Jets could be in the market for a change of pace running back to pair with Chris Ivory. Word came out today that the Jets may be interested in soon to be former Titans running back Chris Johnson. Our TJ Rosenthal gave his thoughts on that in today’s No Huddle. In any event, we’ll continue breaking down the running backs once a week between now and the draft and highlighting if there’s a fit and where the Jets should draft them. You’ll see my grades for the prospects below as well. Up this week is Arizona running back Ka’Deem Carey.
Weight: 207 pounds
40 Yard Dash: 4.7
Vertical Jump: 32.5”
Broad Jump: 9’7”
2013 Stats: 349 carries, 1,885 yards, 5.4 yards per carry, 19 touchdowns, 26 receptions, 173 yards, 6.7 yards per reception, 1 TD
Positives: Carey has good instincts and good leg drive. He actually reminds me of Raiders running back Maurice Jones Drew. Carey has great burst and vision, and he’s able to use that burst and vision to recognize holes to hit. You may scoff at his 40 (4.7 isn’t blazing speed), but Carey has good acceleration and he showed a second and third gear to get away from defenders in the open field. Carey showed a willingness to initiate contact in 2013 that he didn’t show much of in 2012. He is a physical runner who doesn’t possess many moves, but he utilizes these subtle shoulder fakes that set up safeties beautifully. Accelerates smoothly, showing enough speed to break into open field for long-gains. He’s a very good pass blocker. Carey, despite not being utilized in the passing game a lot, did show good hands and great concentration.
Negatives: Carey too often exposes himself to pointless hits by not knowing when to just go down. He doesn’t possess elite speed. There are concerns about whether his success, which came primarily in Rich Rodriguez’s offense, can translate to the NFL. There are concerns about Carey’s character, as he had an assault charge against him from an incident involving his pregnant ex-girlfriend.
Grade: 4th Round
Where the Jets should draft him: Pick 154
Analysis: Carey isn’t as good as Tre Mason, who we broke down last week here at TOJ. With the NFL utilizing more spread offenses, the transition for Carey shouldn’t be as hard as other running backs though. If he ends up in a situation where he is a compliment to an elusive starting running back, then he can be best utilized in that fashion. Carey is my 4th best running back in the draft right now, and I could see the Jets taking him in the 5th round if he falls.