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. The Jets may be interested in soon to be former Titans running back Chris Johnson. 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 Ohio State running back Carlos Hyde.
Weight: 230 pounds
40 Yard Dash: 4.66
Vertical Jump: 34.5”
Broad Jump: 9’6”
2013 Stats: 208 carries, 1,521 yards, 7.3 yards per carry, 15 touchdowns, 16 receptions, 147 yards, 9.2 yards per reception, 3 TD
Positives: After being suspended for the first three games of the season, Carlos Hyde came back with a vengeance. He rushed for 100+ yards in each of the last eight games, including two 200-yard performances. The former Buckeye also finished with 18 total touchdowns. Hyde is a North/South runner; he’s not a running back that’s going to dance behind the line waiting for a hole to materialize. He’s agile for a big man, but he is a power back through and through. He showed the ability to, pardon the pun, turn on the jets when he reached the edge. He displayed solid hands, and did very well in blitz pickup.
Negatives: Character concerns, raised due to the three game suspension, will have to be addressed. Hyde doesn’t have great speed and is much more of a bruiser than a speedster.
Grade: 2nd Round
Where the Jets should draft him: 80th
Analysis: Carlos Hyde is the number one running back on my board. His game reminds me of Green Bay Packers Running Back Eddie Lacy. Hyde is physical, and seeks out contact. Some scouts have said that they don’t think Hyde can be productive in this NFL, and this may cause Hyde to fall. However, he’s a running back that you give the ball 20-25 times and let him feast on defenses. He wouldn’t be the ideal change of pace back that you’d want to pair with Chris Ivory, but his ability to catch the ball makes him an intriguing fit for the Jets in the 3rd round.