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Last week’s 12 Pack is right here, where I outlined my predictions for the New York Jets offseason based on what I think will happen from Mike Maccagnan’s history, not what I would necessarily want to happen. This week, we are focusing on a dream offseason from this writer’s perspective. Feel free to destroy my hopes and dreams right here on Twitter…
1 –Quarterback: While I am perfectly okay with the Jets going after Kirk Cousins and think they have a good shot of signing him, I’d be lying if I said I didn’t prefer drafting Baker Mayfield or Josh Rosen with the 6th overall pick. Who knows if either of those guys (especially Rosen) will be available and who knows if Mike “We Haven’t Closed The Book On Christian” Maccagnan would take them if they were available? The draft is a crapshoot that I don’t currently trust our GM to handle but all things being equal, there is nothing more valuable in football than a drafted, franchise quarterback on his first contract and yes I think Mayfield, Rosen (and maybe Sam Darnold and Lamar Jackson) can be those guys.2 – Offensive Line: With a young quarterback (or actually any quarterback), there is nothing more important than putting a quality, deep offensive line in front of him. The Jets should not just add a center in free agency (Ryan Jensen, Spencer Long?) but make an aggressive play for a guard like Andrew Norwell or Jack Mewhort. It doesn’t matter that they just paid Brian Winters. He is too hurt frequently and is inconsistent. Let him slide into a backup role behind Carpenter and whatever new addition they make. The Jets also shouldn’t be shy about adding a developmental tackle on day three. They should bring Jonotthan Harrison back as the backup center.
3 – Cornerback: The Jets should focus on making two new additions with Morris Claiborne as a fallback plan, as I don’t think the overall market will be bullish on him and they don’t need to scramble to sign him before free agency. Rather than spending big on Trumaine Johnson or Malcolm Butler, the Jets would be better served focusing on adding two of the four following corners: EJ Gaines, Kyle Fuller, Rashaan Melvin, and Bashaud Breeland. If they can only get one, then bring Claiborne back. It is fine to keep Buster Skrine in strictly a nickel role.
4 – Linebacker: There is no easy answer to solving the pass rush problem, particularly with the 6th overall pick going to the quarterback position (even if it doesn’t, there may not be). I’d like to see the Jets invest one of their second round picks into a player listed here, and also take a late round flier on a pass rusher with athletic upside, not a 58 year old division 2 player. They should also add another veteran into the mix like Alex Okafor or Bark Mingo. Demario Davis coming back at 5-6 million dollars per year with most of the guaranteed money in the first two years also makes sense.
5 – Receiver: I am generally not a big proponent of investing major resources into running back or receiver. However considering the Jets red zone woes and the potential of either having a rookie quarterback or a major free agent investment at quarterback, I like them taking a swing at Allen Robinson. They can cut ties with Jermaine Kearse and go play basketball with Robinson (6’3), Robby Anderson (6’3) and Quincy Enunwa (6’2). ArDarius Stewart and Chad Hansen can round out the depth chart.6 – Tight End: This is probably not a popular opinion but I’d let Austin Seferian-Jenkins walk. He is an improving blocker but Eric Tomlinson can handle that role for the Jets and despite being a valuable red zone target, is replaceable in the passing game. I’d rather see the Jets bet on the upside of Trey Burton in free agency.
7 – Wait A Minute: The Jets are going to sign all these guys? Keep in mind in this scenario they didn’t give 150 million dollars to Kirk Cousins. They are going to cut Mo Wilkerson, Matt Forte and Jermaine Kearse. Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Kony Ealy and maybe Morris Claiborne are walking. There will be money to spend.
8 – Defensive Line: Bring back Xavier Cooper and Mike Pennel, let Ealy walk.
9 – Running Back: Sony Michel would be a dream second round pick to add needed explosiveness to the Jets offense. If not Michel, Ronald Jones is another intriguing option to boost the Jets backfield. So I have the Jets going quarterback, running back, edge rusher with their first three picks.
10 – Other Bring Backs: Chandler Catanzaro, David Bass and Terrence Brooks. If Josh McCown wants to come back for 5 million or less as the clear backup, that is fine but I don’t trust Todd Bowles to not play him over the rookie. I’d rather he was brought back as a coach and the team just paid Chad Henne or TJ Yates 1M or so to be backup. Cut Bryce Petty. Cut Christian Hackenberg. Draft another quarterback on day three as a developmental flier.
11 – Anything Else? Sign Zach Line to play fullback. Sign Jon Bostic or Kevin Minter to push Darron Lee for reps at inside linebacker.
12 – So…Depth Chart? Rough approximation. Obviously a few of these are fluid (Mayfield or Rosen, etc) and only the first three draft picks are slotted in.
- QB: Baker Mayfield, Chad Henne
- RB: Bilal Powell, Sony Michel, Eli McGuire
- FB: Zach Line
- WR: Allen Robinson, Robby Anderson, Quincy Enunwa, Chad Hansen
- TE: Trey Burton, Eric Tomlinson, Jordan Leggett
- LT: Kelvin Beachum
- LG: James Carpenter
- C: Ryan Jensen, Jonotthan Harrison
- RG: Jack Mewhort, Brian Winters
- RT: Brandon Shell, Ben Ijalana
- DE: Leonard Williams, Xavier Cooper
- NT: Steve McLendon, Mike Pennel
- OLB: Jordan Jenkins, Ogbonnia Okoronkwo, Josh Martin, David Bass
- ILB: Demario Davis, Darron Lee, Jon Bostic
- CB: EJ Gaines, Rashaan Melvin, Buster Skrine, Daryl Roberts
- S: Jamal Adams, Marcus Maye, Terrence Brooks, Rontez Miles
Photo Credit: NewYorkJets.com