The New York Jets addressed their long standing need at edge rusher with their first third round pick of the night by selecting Florida edge rusher Jachai Polite. One of the more divisive prospects in the class, Polite was a highly productive college player at the top level of competition who struggled in the pre-draft process, moving him from a potential first round pick into day two. This is a high risk, high reward swing.
Here is what I wrote about Polite pre-draft when I mocked him to the Jets with this exact pick:
Polite has failed the pre-draft process, stringing together a collection of bad workouts and interviews that is overriding the tape of a prospect who should be a borderline first round player. The Jets need to take some risks to improve a roster filled with holes at critical areas and they are long overdue to go over the top when it comes to fixing their edge pass rush. Polite has a natural collection of pass rush moves and racked up 11 sacks, 6 forced fumbles and 17.5 tackles for a loss against top tier competition last year. He is also only 21 years old. I don’t love going defense with the first two selections but this is a unique opportunity to fix the pass rush for the few years, at least.
Here is his Player Profiler comparison:
This was a worthwhile risk at a position of major need for the Jets. If Polite plays to his potential and production in college, he can be the answer to the team’s pass rushing woes off the edge and be a potential day one value stolen late on day three. There is a low floor with this pick if the pre-draft woes were a sign of things to come but at only 21 years old, Polite has room to grow and you need to take some high upside swings with these dart throw picks. There is no reason Polite cannot push for immediate playing and potential starter level reps with the current Jets roster. He joins an edge group of Jordan Jenkins, Brandon Copeland and Frankie Luvu.
Now, the Jets need to use the rest of their remaining picks on the offensive side of the football (I am not joking at all).