Turn On The Jets 12 Pack: Final Thoughts On The NFL Draft

TOJ with 12 final thoughts on the New York Jets heading into the NFL Draft

One last rant on the NFL Draft and a special 12 pack for you to enjoy as you saddle up for a great night of sports. Stay with us throughout the night, as I will be live blogging throughout the entire first round and updating the post after each pick. After the Jets make their selection, myself and Chris Gross will provide instant analysis. Tomorrow we will provide further analysis, along with breaking down the 2nd and 3rd rounds. Finally, the NBA playoffs do tip off on Saturday so look for a first round and Knicks preview at some point tomorrow.

1. No Trade, No Trent – It is being reported today that there is a “0.0” percent chance the New York Jets will trade up for running back Trent Richardson unless he begins to fall or they receive a “sweetheart deal.” Nothing is a 0.0 percent possibility with this team but unless Richardson unexpectedly escapes the top 5, it doesn’t sound like he will end up on the Jets.

2. He Is A Guard – There is also chatter picking up about Stanford Guard David DeCastro being a possibility for the Jets at #16. The problem is that they reportedly plan to move him to right tackle if they select him. I don’t like moving a guy out of his natural position to fit a need on your team. Don’t put a square peg in a round hole. If you want to address tackle in round one, go up and get Matt Kalil who could slide into the 7-10 range or stay put and take Riley Reiff.

3. Fighting Irish – If Michael Floyd is on the board at #16…the Jets are going to strongly consider him. If they pick him over Melvin Ingram, this website will riot in protest. I dislike taking a receiver in the first round as a “Ground and Pound” team, particularly when you badly need somebody who can get after the quarterback. Floyd over Courtney Upshaw would be slightly easier to stomach but I still would disagree with the move.

4. Trade Back – If the Jets miss out on Melvin Ingram, Mark Barron and Michael Floyd, and they feel they could still get Courtney Upshaw or Chandler Jones by trading back a few spots, I have no problem with that move. Unfortunately, that is likely a risky route because it sounds like Jones will be a top 15 pick anyway and the Bengals are reportedly high on Upshaw at #17.

5. Mid-Round Safety – Unless the Jets are going to trade into the top ten, they aren’t getting Mark Barron. Look for them to target LSU safety Brandon Taylor in the 2nd or 3rd round, unless Trumaine Johnson is available at 47…who I can’t see the Jets passing on there.

6. Lucky Break – It is starting to sound like there is a very good chance Melvin Ingram will slide all the way to #16. Keep an eye on Seattle at #12 but if he gets by them, the Jets should be in good shape. I’d be shocked if they passed on him at #16, if he was still available…shocked.

7. Day Two and Day Three – I don’t want to get too much into day two and three prospects for the Jets until I see how they handle their first pick but keep an eye on running back Robert Turbin and wide receiver Alshon Jeffery.

8. The Other Outside Linebackers – If the Jets don’t end up with an outside linebacker today, look for them to make a strong push for Vinny Curry or Andre Branch tomorrow.

9. Veteran Trades – I am sure the Jets will float out a few veterans in trade offers but I don’t expect anything to happen, mainly because nobody wants Bart Scott, Calvin Pace (at his money), Wayne Hunter, or Eric Smith. The sleeper is moving Dustin Keller but that still remains a long shot.

10. Disaster Picks – Dontari Poe or Quinton Coples have bust written all over them.

11. Keep An Eye On – Buffalo trading up for Matt Kalil. San Diego trading up for Mark Barron. Tampa Bay trading up for Trent Richardson.

12. 7 Paths For the Jets…

  • Take Melvin Ingram at 16
  • Take Michael Floyd at 16
  • Take Chandler Jones at 16
  • Take David DeCastro at 16
  • Trade Up For Mark Barron
  • Trade Way Up For Trent Richardson
  • Trade Back For Courtney Upshaw

New York Jets: The Case For Trading Up For Trent Richardson

TOJ make the case for the New York Jets to trade up for running back Trent Richardson

Let me start off this article by saying I believe the New York Jets will end up with Melvin Ingram in the first round of the NFL Draft on Thursday and that I support the move, even if it involves trading up a handful of spots. However, stranger things have happened and I do think the Jets will be watching the top six picks very closely with an eye to potentially make a blockbuster move to acquire running back Trent Richardson.

There is increasing chatter that the St. Louis Rams are looking hard at moving up to #3 to take Richardson and that if they don’t Cleveland will take him with the 4th pick. At this point it would be a shock if Richardson slides out of the top five, meaning that if the Jets want him, it is going to cost them.

Basically you are looking at swapping your first round pick, giving up a third rounder this year and your first rounder next year to get into the necessary position to take Richardson, the consensus third best player in this draft and without question the best running back available. Is it worth it?

The initial reaction by nearly everybody I have discussed this with is no. The Jets have glaring needs at safety, linebacker, right tackle and wide receiver that need to be addressed. You are giving up a valuable middle round pick this year and an important building block next year with your first round pick to acquire one player.

Yet, let’s think this through a little further. The Jets attempt to portray themselves as a “Ground and Pound” team. The problem is that they don’t have an elite running back. With Richardson, you are arguably getting the safest bet in this draft. A player who can step in immediately, play on all three downs and give you 20 carries a game. You want a 1,500+ yard back to spearhead your offense and make defenses fear your running game to help protect Mark Sanchez, now you have him. Beyond that, could you imagine attempting to defend Tim Tebow and Trent Richardson in the same backfield in short yardage situations? Good luck.

There is a trickle down effect to drafting Richardson. Shonn Greene now rolls down into the supporting back role he thrived at earlier in his career. He can give you 10-12 carries a game against defenses worn down by Richardson and finally begin popping some of the big runs he did earlier in his career when he was behind Thomas Jones on the depth chart. Joe McKnight can focus on becoming one of the league’s elite return men and be used on a specific package of plays that utilize his speed.

The Jets shortcomings on the offensive line will be minimized to an extent. Richardson is a good enough prospect to compensate for the occasional breakdowns in run blocking because he can make people miss. There will also be fewer pass attempts on offense with Richardson, Greene, McKnight and Tebow all there as rushing options. Beyond that, when you do throw, the play action will hold defenses more with a big time threat at running back in Richardson. Let’s face it, defense aren’t that scared of a potential handoff to Shonn Greene.

What about the rest of the holes? When you take Richardson, you are making that much more of a commitment to the running game, lowering the importance of the #2 wide receiver spot. Sign Braylon Edwards to the veteran’s minimum and spend one of your many compensatory picks on a prospect to develop behind him. Use your second round pick on a safety and sign Yeremiah Bell for depth. Linebacker? That is a tough one but maybe you give up Dustin Keller to acquire a middle round pick to draft one. Or you hope Bryan Thomas, Calvin Pace, and Aaron Maybin can hold the fort for a year. Your defense will be better as a byproduct of a dominant running game.

There are inevitable issues with trading for Richardson but a minimum you should have one of the league’s best running games, that in turn will make your quarterback, who thrives off play action, that much better. Even if the Jets make zero additions to their current defense, they will be decent on that side of the ball. They could pair that defense with an offense that actually strikes some fear into their opponents by adding a blue chip player like Richardson.

TOJ New York Jets Mock Draft 3.0

TOJ rounds up all the recent mock drafts and gives his prediction for what the Jets will do in the NFL Draft

The NFL Draft is now only 6 days away. Here is an updated look at what multiple mock drafts have the New York Jets doing with the number 16 pick in the first round, along with our current prediction. Here at TOJ, we are looking to make it three years in a row of predicting the Jets first selection correctly, previously calling it right on Kyle Wilson and Muhammad Wilkerson.

Before we get into our third mock draft. Check out our previous draft coverage, led by myself and staff writer Chris Gross

To the mock drafts…

Don Banks, Sports Illustrated – Courtney Upshaw, Outside Linebacker, Alabama

Peter King, Sports Illustrated – Dontari Poe, Defensive Tackle, Memphis

Pete Prisco, CBS Sports – Courtney Upshaw, Outside Linebacker, Alabama

Evan Silva, Rotoworld –  Melvin Ingram, Outside Linebacker, South Carolina

Walter Football – Chandler Jones, Defensive End/Outside Linebacker, Syracuse

ESPN NFL Blog Network – Michael Floyd, Wide Receiver, Notre Dame

Charley Casserly, NFL.com – Nick Perry, Defensive End/Outside Linebacker, USC

TOJ – Melvin Ingram, Outside Linebacker, South Carolina

Analysis – The picks for the Jets are starting to move all over the place. A few weeks ago the consensus seemed to be Courtney Upshaw or Mark Barron but with Barron’s climb up most draft boards and Upshaw’s decline, it would be far from a surprise if the Jets ended up with neither. There is now talk that Upshaw could slide all the way out of the first round while Barron has stabilized himself as a top 15 pick that the Jets would be lucky to see available at #16.

More rumors have been linking the Jets to Melvin Ingram, who seems to be the most logical fit on the Jets roster. Many coaches could be scared away by Ingram not being a perfect fit in any one position, while Rex Ryan would embrace that versatility to line him up at outside linebacker, inside linebacker, defensive end and even defensive tackle. Considering Jacksonville’s apparent lack of interest in Ingram, there is starting to be some talk that he could slide to #16 which would be the best case scenario for the Jets, allowing them to get the player they really want without having to sacrifice any picks.

If the Jets were to trade up, Carolina is the most logical trade partner at #9. Mike Tannenbaum and Panthers GM Martin Hurney have worked together on draft day before when the Jets moved up to get Darrelle Revis. They also worked together on the Kris Jenkins trade. Unfortunately such a move would likely cost the Jets their second round pick this year.

One other option that is a little far fetched, if Trent Richardson somehow slips out of the top six. I would not be stunned if the Jets traded up to 7 to grab him. He is good enough and fits well enough with their identity that it would be worth it.

At the moment, here are my projections for the Jets first round pick in descending order of likelihood:

5. Trade Up For Trent Richardson – Crazier things have happened on draft days. If somehow he slips past #6, the Jets could look to trade with Jacksonville and take the draft’s unquestioned top back.

4. Stay Put And Take Michael Floyd – I don’t think the Jets would trade up for Floyd but if he falls to 16, depending on who else is available they would strongly consider him.

3. Stay Put Or Trade Back For Courtney Upshaw, Dont’a Hightower, Chandler Jones or Andre Branch – If the Jets miss out on Ingram, one of these players would be their next target at linebacker. Hightower is an inside linebacker but would provide the best value at 16. The Jets may now be able to trade back a few spots and still get Upshaw. If they want Branch or Jones, they should look at trading back into the mid 20s.

2. Stay Put Or Trade Up For Mark Barron – Unless Ingram is still on the board, there is nobody the Jets would be happier to see at #16 than Mark Barron. The Jets could also consider hopping over Dallas to try and snag him.

1. Stay Put Or Trade Up For Melvin Ingram – If Ingram falls to 16, the Jets are taking him. If they don’t think that is likely, they are going to make a strong push to move up to grab him.