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The New York Jets and Mike Maccagnan are in a great spot to land a franchise cornerstone at quarterback. They will have close to 100 million in cap space and the 6th overall pick this offseason.
The only thing keeping me a Jets fan for so long is my blind optimism, so I will use that to explain how I feel for each one of the QBs the Jets are in play for:
Kirk Cousins —Kirk is a proven NFL QB. At worst he is top 15 and at best he is top 8-12 range. He has played in the playoffs despite having a lackluster run game or offensive line and his defense has done him no favors. Not that the Jets are stacked but if they do sign Cousins, there will still be a boat load of cash to bring in a corner like Trumaine Johnson or a running back like Jerrick McKinnon. On top of that it will let the Jets use their first three picks (which are all in the top 50) on the best player available.
Kirk is a plug and play weapon that instantly boosts our offense and would be the best QB the team has had since Brett Favre in 2008.
Baker Mayfield —Out of all the rookie quarterbacks, Baker seems to be the most popular with Jets fans. Not only is he the most realistic for them to take at #6 because he is considered the second tier after Josh Rosen and Sam Darnold, but he is also extremely accurate. Size and off the field concerns will stop the Cleveland Browns and maybe the Giants from drafting him but when I see the Heisman Trophy winner, I see a leader. Adding Baker to a team that already has a young core of talented players like Jamal Adams and Leonard Williams would be exciting.
Josh Rosen — Rosen throws the prettiest football in the draft. His mechanics are flawless and release is effortless. He was surrounded by a much weaker supporting staff (and coaching) yet still went on to throw for almost 4,000 yards and 26 touchdowns in 2017. He is the prototypical quarterback and would be someone that would bring Jets fans hope for the future.
Sam Darnold – Myself like the rest of the country fell for Darnold after his Rose Bowl performance last season against Penn State. I watched every game intently hoping to see him recapture that moment. While he never was as excellent as he was in then, Darnold still made some plays I’ve never seen before. He is Houdini in the pocket and is so hard for defenses to bring down. He is tough as nails (was recruited as a linebacker) and his grandfather was the original Marlboro Man whose REAL NAME was ‘Dick Hammer’. I’m sure the New York Post would have fun with that.
Josh Allen —He is tall, he is fast, he has a cannon. Although he would be a horrific pick, he would produce make some cool looking interceptions!
Let’s hope Maccagnan has an IV of Extra Bold Brazilian Roast Coffee hooked up and is prepping to throw 30 million per year at Cousins, is convinced Baker will last till #6 or that he can trade up for Darnold or Rosen. If not we might be in for another 20 years of mediocrity before the planets align for us again.
Photo Credit: NFL.com