The New York Jets traded back in the 3rd round from #70 to #79 and picked up an extra fifth round pick from the Minnesota Vikings. With their third round selection, they selected Alabama wide receiver ArDarius Stewart, a mild surprise considering the round, his skill set and position.
The Positives: Stewart is a physical offensive player with immediate special teams value, potentially as a returner and definitely on coverage units. He has strong after the catch ability and is built more like a running back than a wide receiver. Competes on routes down the field and has good straight line speed. Similar to Adams and Maye, is highly competitive and brings strong intangibles.
The Negatives: Has a limited route tree and did most of his work on bubble screens, pop passes and swing routes out of the backfield. He does not have great natural hands or hips, particularly for a NFL wide receiver. This is a troubling comparison to see. This felt like a bit of a reach, as there were more highly regarded wide receiver options on the board if that was a positional focus for the Jets. Where does he fit on the roster?
Roster Waves: Stewart is basically a rich man’s version of Jalin Marshall so that may impact the currently suspended receiver. Outside of him, he will be battling with Charone Peake, Quinton Patton and Devin Smith for reps and may knock one off the roster.
Overview: Stewart will be a core special teams player immediately and a situational weapon on offense with plays likely designed to take advantage of his YAC ability. This is a less encouraging pick than Adams or Maye and felt like a slight reach at a position the Jets have decent depth at.
Photo Credit: Alabama.com