New York Jets – State Of Roster Headed Into NFL Draft

Joe Caporoso on the remaining work needed to the New York Jets roster as they head towards the NFL Draft

The fireworks of free agency are over and the NFL Draft is now one month away. Let’s take a step back and look at the state of the New York Jets roster…

Quarterback 

  • Sam Darnold, Trevor Siemian, Davis Webb 

The most important and pivotal piece of the Jets roster is in place with Darnold, as the Jets will sink or swim in 2019 based on the size of the year two jump he makes (or doesn’t make). Siemian is a perfectly capable backup with starting experience on a reasonable contract. Webb is likely a camp arm.

Running Back 

  • Le’Veon Bell, Elijah McGuire, Trenton Cannon

Bell was the team’s marquee addition in free agency and will be the best rostered skill position the team has had since Curtis Martin. McGuire is fine as a third option and situational player in the passing game but the Jets need a more capable backup if Bell is slow adjusting to his return or gets banged up. Cannon is a special teams player, if that.

Wide Receiver 

  • Robby Anderson, Quincy Enunwa, Jamison Crowder, Josh Bellamy, Deontay Burnett, Charone Peake

Crowder was a strong addition in the slot and will give the Jets more flexibility with how they utilize Enunwa. Anderson finished 2018 strong and has 1,000 yard potential. The Jets depth is a concern here due primarily to Enunwa’s injury history (Crowder and Anderson were also banged up last year). Bellamy and Peake are special teamers. Burnett flashed a little bit last season but the Jets need more here.

Offensive Tackle 

  • Kelvin Beachum, Brandon Shell, Brent Qvale, Tom Compton 

Recently signed Compton can also serve as a backup at guard and is the team’s only new addition so far. Shell will be returning from a major injury and missed 4+ games the year prior as well. Beachum is an underrated, competent starter at a critical position. Qvale is not capable of playing more than a few snaps of spot duty. The Jets need to take some swings at this position in the NFL Draft.

Interior Lineman 

  • Jonotthan Harrison, Kelechi Osemele, Brian Winters, Ben Braden

Osemele will be an upgrade over James Carpenter and was a savvy trade addition. Winters is barely an average starter and Harrison is a backup who is currently slotted to start. The Jets have more work to do here.

Tight End 

  • Chris Herndon, Jordan Leggett, Eric Tomlinson, Neal Sterling 

The same group as last year. Herndon had a great rookie season but will likely be suspended to start the season and did have injury concerns in college. The Jets should still be seeking depth here as Tomlinson and Leggett are not built to handle major reps and Sterling has struggled to stay healthy.

Defensive Line 

  • Steve McLendon, Leonard Williams, Henry Anderson, Nathan Shepherd, Foley Fatukasi

The same group as last year, minus Mike Pennel who was productive in a limited role and joined the Patriots. The Jets are betting on Anderson to stay healthy and that last season was not an outlier. Shephard and Fatukasi look like wasted picks through one year but will get another shot with a new coaching staff. We are all still waiting for the Leonard Williams breakout season. McLendon is a quality two down nose tackle.

Inside Linebacker 

  • CJ Mosley, Avery Williamson, Darron Lee, Neville Hewitt 

The Jets most expensive addition in free agency was Mosley, who is arguably the best inside linebacker in the NFL and will provide an upgrade over Lee, who is on the trading block. Williamson is a solid running mate for Mosley and Hewitt is a capable backup. It will be interesting to see how teams try to spread the Jets out to get Mosley and Williamson in space and how Gregg Williams counters that.

Outside Linebacker 

  • Jordan Jenkins, Brandon Copeland, Frankie Luvu, Tarell Basham

It was equally surprising to see the Jets sit out the center market as it was to see them sit out the edge market. This is currently the same group from last year and while the draft is still on the way, not taking a swing in free agency will likely keep this as a problem spot to some extent for 2019. Jenkins is a good complementary player and Copeland/Luvu flashed in depth roles but the Jets are thin here, as they’ve been since John Abraham retired.

Cornerback 

  • Trumaine Johnson, Daryl Roberts, Brian Poole, Rashard Robinson, Derrick Jones, Parry Nickerson 

The Jets swapped slot corners, bringing in Poole to replace Buster Skrine. As it stands now, the Jets would have a backup in Roberts starting opposite of Trumaine Johnson who is coming off a tough season. Robinson has been a disaster when given an opportunity. Jones has flashed intriguing athleticism and is worth a longer look. The Jets need more help here in a big way.

Safety 

  • Jamal Adams, Marcus Maye, Doug Middleton, Rontez Miles

Adams is the team’s best player and already an All-Pro in his second year. Maye has been good, when healthy but the lack of depth behind them is concerning.

Special Teams 

  • Chandler Catanzaro, Lachlan Edwards, Thomas Hennessey

The Jets are banking on Catanzaro replacing Jason Myers randomly great outlier season and somebody in house replacing Andre Roberts as a returner. Jamison Crowder should be fine on punts if needed but kick returner is a question mark.

Top Five Remaining Needs 

  1. Center
  2. Edge
  3. Cornerback
  4. Offensive Line depth/young talent
  5. Skill position depth (RB2, TE2, WR4)

Author: Joe Caporoso

Joe Caporoso is the Owner and EIC of Turn On The Jets. His writing has been featured in the New York Times, Huffington Post, MMQB and AdWeek. Caporoso played football his entire life, including four years at Muhlenberg as a wide receiver, where he was arguably the slowest receiver to ever start in school history. He is the VP of Social Media at Whistle Sports