No Huddle – New York Jets Draft Recap Edition

TJ Rosenthal goes No Huddle on Mike Maccagnan’s first draft as the New York Jets GM

TJ Rosenthal kicks off another week of New York Jets coverage at Turn On The Jets with his weekly No Huddle – Make sure to give TJ a follow on Twitter on Turn On The Jets a follow on Facebook.

I Want A Maccagnan Jersey

After all was said and done on Saturday the first thing I said to myself was “I want a Mike Maccagnan jersey.” The rookie GM has been on the attack in reshaping the Jets since the minute free agency started. He has given hope to 2015 while keeping the potential for natural year by year growth intact by not mortgaging the team’s future for some quick fix.

Maccagnan optimized opportunities this past weekend, whether you like his selections or not, and draft grades are always debatable before we ever see the kids as pros but he had a plan. For many of us that’s a step in the right direction in and of itself.

Chicago Highlights

I wanted Amari Cooper. I’m not going to lie. The Raiders nabbed him at 4 though. Leonard Williams was the best player available from there, and arguably the best defensive player on the draft board period. Comparisons to Reggie White? I saw a few of those. That’s enough for me.
Williams is now the final piece to the modem day Sack Exchange being built, assuming that Mo Wilkerson is here to stay (the only way I’d deal Mo is in a package that includes a top ten quarterback in return).

Devin Smith, the Ohio State speedster proved that Macc knew we weren’t done with needing more help in the passing game. I saw a DeSean Jackson comparison to him too in one scouting report. Sign me up for that. I was doing jumping jacks, kicking and screaming when D-Jax was available last off-season. Lord Idzik didn’t want to have any fun though. I’ll settle for rolling the dice that Smith is the next DeSean for the time being, thank you.

Lorenzo Mauldin according to CBS and probably many other reports is an emotional, fiery edge rusher. Imagine this defense if he’s ready to help even in a limited way on passing downs now?

Bryce Petty? I’d draft a quarterback every year. When considering the last franchise QB the Jets had was once seen throwing passes to Bobby Brady in his family’s artificial turf backyard on the Brady Bunch. Let’s just say THAT was a long time ago.

One late round offensive lineman and defensive tackle later, Macc then swung a deal for Zac Stacy. OK, Stacy plummeted last year but for a seventh round pick, I’ll take a third year back with a humongous chip on his shoulder.

Overall the Jets got probably better this season in Chicago. It is a crap-shoot anyway these drafts, you can’t ask for more. Oh I know, I know. We all know. What about the franchise QB? Hey, this wasn’t the time or place to fix that by trading up to get Winston or Mariota or swing a deal for a top veteran. None were really available, as much as I wanted to believe that Phillip Rivers was.

Gotta Go To Mo’s

Forget this talk that Mo Wilkerson is now on the block. With the current crop that includes Leonard Williams after he landed in Maccagnan’s lap, the Jets defense is poised to deliver three and outs more than our offense has the past two seasons.

The Williams addition combined with Mo on the other side and Sheldon Richardson inside (don’t forget Snacks Harrison either) could make it next to impossible for quarterbacks to drop back deep in the pocket too often. Good luck trying to run all over the Jets on early downs too. Wear this 3-4 down in the trenches? Not anymore.

Contract stuff has to be worked out in this case. Mo Wilkerson must remain here. This year and beyond. This will be a serious rotation that teams will be unable to tire for years . One that could lead the team all by itself. Let’s see it dominate. Of all the moves Macc has made, finding a way to solve the Wilkerson deal will be perhaps his biggest coup.

What Exactly Did Happen to Stacy?

All of you fire John Idzik guys might have called for my fantasy football GM too last year, had you known that I willingly took Zac Stacy in the second round last season. Despite warnings of fantasy bust in light of his shoddy preseason and the Sam Bradford injury.

I know Stacy will come to Florham Park motivated to prove doubters wrong.  How could he not be? He just went from a starter to a trade piece in exchange for nothing more than a bag of deflated footballs. Stacy can contribute though. It is a good pickup. A seventh rounder for him? Shrewd deal. I just can’t tell how high Stacy’s ceiling is now. Not after last year.

Quick Hits

– Some in the media continue to point out that the Jets focus to a fault, is still on upgrading the defense more than the offense. Not me. I’ve seen moves made at receiver and running back so far. Maybe not top five talent type guys but wise deals that have upgraded skill positions. The Jets needed to go big at cornerback and did in free agency. Leonard Williams just fell to them Thursday. It happens.

Next focus, ASIDE from franchise quarterback, of course is the O- line. It needs to get younger over the next two years.

– Raiders are releasing James Jones. If the contract numbers don’t make it a problem, I’d be happy to sign him and see if he can make it work here. Jones will be a solid veteran third/fourth option somewhere.

– I’m excited again. As a fan, I’m excited again. This offseason has changed the face of the immediate and proved to me that the team has a front office that is now willing to be prudent but also aggressive when it has to be.