Initial Reaction – New York Jets Select DE Jabari Zuniga

Greg Armstrong with initial reaction to the New York Jets 3rd round pick of Florida DEJabari Zuniga

The Jets finally addressed their edge rusher need by picking Jabari Zuniga with the 79th pick. A versatile edge who can stand up or maybe even eventually slide in on DL. Will he be able to finally give the Jets that edge rusher they’ve been searching for?

Zuniga is a freak athlete. He’s got very good instincts and twitch. A guy you can stand up in a 3-4, slide down into a 4-3 DE or even play him inside. He didn’t end up picking up football until high school (was a basketball guy). At just 5-11, 210 in his junior year of high school, he hit his growth spurt and garnered more attention nationally until he signed with Florida.

Zuniga most likely would have gone higher if he came out of school last season but his mom wanted him to go back for another year. It didn’t end up going as planned as an ankle injury forced him to miss most of his senior season.

He’s still raw as far as football goes. Good hands and has been described as a bear by some with his speed and powerful hands. Really high potential guy who could really turn into something great under Gregg Williams. It’ll be interesting to see where he finds his role on this team. Sliding inside might not be an option considering he’s too small and the Jets have a billion DL. I think his best spot is either as a stand up edge or as a 4-3 end.

With how raw he is and knowing how hard Gregg is on his younger players, I’m not sure how much playing time he’ll see immediately. Zuniga seems more like a guy who will get limited playing time to start, develop some and then see his playing time increased. I don’t hate the pick but I would have gone with a guy like Bradlee Anae if that’s the position they were targeting.

Work your magic Gregggg.