It’s finally here: draft week. It is Christmas for NFL fans spanning three days long, now debuting in Chicago for the first time in the history of the league. So what can we expect? Here are some thoughts to keep on your radar for the big event…
What do the Jets do with the 6th and 37th overall picks?
In general manager Mike Maccagnan’s most recent press conference, there were numerous hints of interest in trading down to acquire more picks. Now what if the Jets stay put at 6?
One would have to assume the ideal scenario for the team is that Dante Fowler Jr. falls to them. He is the prototypical ‘edge’ player for Todd Bowles’ defense and will start right away. ‘Plan B’ in a similar situation is that Kentucky ‘edge’ defender Bud Dupree is on the board with Fowler gone.
If top talent such as defensive lineman Leonard Williams or wide out Amari Cooper fall to six, the Jets phones could get quite busy. The Jets are not desperate at either of these position groups and this would present their best opportunity to trade out while acquiring more picks.
In the second round, the Jets will be picking very early (5th overall on day two of the draft). In this spot one would imagine the team will be looking for an upgrade at right tackle, seeing as Breno Giacomini struggled last year.
More importantly, the team needs a future left tackle. D’Brickashaw Ferguson will hold that role this year, but with his contract, he is not guaranteed anything beyond 2015. If the Jets can land a tackle prospect in round two that can be an upgrade of Giacomini this season and potentially a long term replacement for Ferguson on the left side, that would be a home run.
Prospects that fall into this category include Pittsburgh’s TJ Clemmings, Florida’s DJ Humphries, and Miami’s Ereck Flowers. While I do not expect all three to be available at 37, one could certainly slide.
Best Guess: The Top 15
If I was a betting man, this is how I think (not what I would do) the top 15 could shake out:
1) Buccaneers – Jameis Winston, QB, Florida State
2) Titans – Marcus Mariota, QB, Oregon
3) Jaguars – Dante Fowler Jr., Edge, Florida
4) Raiders – Leonard Williams, DL, USC
5) Redskins – Vic Beasley, Edge, Clemson
6) Jets – Bud Dupree, Edge, Kentucky
7) Bears – Kevin White, WR, West Virginia
8) Falcons – Amari Cooper, WR, Alabama
9) Giants – Andrus Peat, OT, Stanford
10) Rams – Devante Parker, WR, Louisville
11) Viking – Trae Waynes, CB, Michigan State
12) Browns – Danny Shelton, DT, Washington
13) Saints – Arik Armstead, DL, Oregon
14) Dolphins – Melvin Gordon, RB, Wisconsin
15) 49ers – Marcus Peters, CB, Washington
Follow Connor Rogers: @CRogers_NFL