NFL Draft 2020 – New York Jets Day Three Preview

Dan Essien with a day three preview for the New York Jets in the 2020 NFL Draft

The New York Jets were quite busy on day two. After two trades, they now enter day 3 with 6 picks remaining at 120, 125, 129, 158, 191, and 211. After a day two group that started with an expected target in WR Denzel Mims and ended with two interesting directions with S Ashtyn Davis, and EDGE Jabari Zuniga, it’ll be interesting to see what positions the Jets plan to use their remaining shots on. Here are some thoughts on what the Jets strategy could be.

Shoring Up The Interior

It was a surprise to see the Jets not address interior offensive line at all yesterday. Especially given their well-documented past struggles when lacking talent there. It seems that Joe Douglas might be more comfortable with the group he had pre-draft than we thought. There is a still a chance on day 3 to add a IOL with the potential to maybe start. The best two options remaining are: Tyler Biadasz from Wisconsin, and Nick Harris from Washington. Beyond those two they’re really scraping the bottom of the barrell.

Falling Corners

The Jets made two additions defensively yesterday but they could still use some additional help in the secondary. It’s unclear what Gregg Williams will do with Ashtyn Davis but there are a few talented cornerbacks remaining on day 3. The best remaining of them, in my opinion, are: Bryce Hall from Virginia, Amik Robertson from Louisiana Tech, and Darnay Holmes from UCLA.

Hall has the most talent of this group by far but dealt with a serious injury last season, likely being the sole reason for his fall to day 3. If healthy, Hall starts on this Jets’ defense. He’s that good. It wouldn’t be out of the question for the Jets to maybe even use their extra picks to jump another team for him.

Project Pass Catcher

The Jets have added Denzel Mims to the receiver group but they can certainly afford to add another receiver before the end of the day. Even though it was a deep WR group this year, they’d be looking more at project situations with the players that remain and banking on either upside or hidden talent. I also think that college coaching could play a huge factor here. There are some players, even amongst these day 3 targets, that are more ready to transition into an NFL offense than others. I believe the best remaining receivers are: Donovan Peoples-Jones from Michigan, Tyler Johnson from Minnesota, K.J Hill from Ohio State, and  James Proche from SMU.

When I refer to college coaching, Donovan Peoples-Jones and K.J Hill are the prime examples. Both, I believe, will have no problem learning a new offense in the NFL because of the preparation given by the offensive staffs at both Ohio State and Michigan respectively. Peoples-Jones is the younger and more physically gifted player, though. He registered a 4.48 40-time and a 44.5 inch vertical in his testing. His production suffered due to poor quarterback play and Jim Harbaugh but his upside is undeniable.

Jets Round 4-7 Mock Draft

Pick 120: CB Bryce Hall, Virginia: The Jets get great value at a 120 with Bryce Hall who will immediately challenge for a starting spot amongst their new-look secondary. Hall is solid in man coverage and not afraid to get physical. He also brings the intangibles that Joe Douglas has emphasized as a former team captain at Virginia.

Pick 125: C Tyler Biadasz, Wisconsin: The Jets finally add to their interior offensive line in the draft. Biadasz had a disappointing, injury-plagued final season at Wisconsin that caused his stock to plummet. However, he doesn’t lack potential and he’s coming from a program with excellent pedigree when it comes to offensive line play. It’s certainly worth a shot at this spot in the draft. Biadasz will come in with the upside of starting at center and kicking Connor McGovern over, and the floor of being a depth addition.

Pick 129: WR Donovan Peoples-Jones, Michigan: DPJ is an all-upside kind of selection. The physical traits are promising but he needs work to round out his technical ability and develop good habits. Having a good quarterback will go a long way to encourage that. It may take some time but I believe he has the potential to be a starter in the NFL.

Pick 158: RB Anthony McFarland, Maryland: The Jets land their change of pace back to compliment Le’Veon Bell at the top of the 5th round. McFarland has a ton of juice and no injury concerns. His lack of production in 2019 was mainly due to adjacent talent at the same position (Javon Leake). McFarland didn’t show as much as a receiver at Maryland as NFL teams would’ve liked. But his speed and agility definitely show that if he can catch the ball consistently, he can be a legit weapon in the passing game as well.

Pick 191: EDGE Kenny Willekes, Michigan State: The Jets can never do too much to address their pass rush. Willekes biggest hurdle has been lack of athleticism. He had a nightmare combine and the quarantine regulations ruined his chances to make up for it. However, Willekes has shown enough ability as a pass rusher and a run defender to warrant a shot, particularly in the 6th round of this draft.

Pick 211: QB Anthony Gordon, Washington State: The Jets need a legitimate backup quarterback with upside. Gordon would be an excellent option in at this selection. Last season was his only full season as a college quarterback and he threw for 5579 yards and 48 TD’s. While Washington State quarterback are often inflated, he had a better completion percentage and better yards per attempt than Gardner Minshew had in his final season at Washington State the year prior. Gordon would be an excellent backup to Sam Darnold and a really fun guy to watch in preseason.