What would the ideal New York Jets draft be like? Heavy on defensive backs, a couple wide receivers, depth on the offensive line, an elite tight end, maybe a running back, and a Rex Ryan special or two on the defensive line. We’ll leave QB out for now with the addition of Mike Vick. There’s a deeper “need” breakdown below.
1-18- Eric Ebron, TE, UNC.
Everyone says he won’t be there; we’ll see. If Ebron is gone, CJ Fiedorowicz (Iowa) could make sense in the 3rd/4th.
2-49 – Jordan Matthews, WR, Vanderbilt
A lot of small WRs will be available in Round 1. He’s 6-foot-3 and ran a 4.46. Didn’t have a star QB. Makes plays. Really, really like him. Decker is 6-foot-3, Kerley is 5-9, David Nelson is 6-5 and Stephen Hill is 6-4. I much prefer Matthews here to Lee/Cooks in the 1st. New York could look for a speedster in later rounds.
3-80 – Pierre Desir, CB, Lindenwood.
Big 6-foot-1 CB from a small school. Big stats (25 interceptions). Been a sleeper so long that he’s gotten on Mel Kiper’s radar. Packers, Eagles and many others like him. Ceiling could be 2nd round, floor seems to be the 4th.
4-104 -LaMarcus Joyner, DB, FSU
Too small (5-8, 184) to be a safety; doesn’t have speed to play corner. A poor man’s Honey Badger. Words like intelligent and instinctive come to mind. Depending who you read, Joyner could be a 2nd round pick. But 3rd or 4th is more likely.
4-115 – Aaron Lynch, DE, USF.
After his freshman year at Notre Dame (5.5 sacks), he looked like a 1st round pick, and a Jared Allen clone. What on earth happened? Still unexplained. It seems unlikely Lynch (6-5, 249) falls this far given the lack of pass-rushers in this draft. Teams I’ve spoken with believe he goes in the 3rd round, but the Jets wouldn’t be interested there.
4-137 – Dontae Johnson, CB, NC State.
Big (6-foot-2), fast (4.45 40) corner who is an intriguing prospect despite not popping on tape. Worst case scenario is Johnson transitions to safety.
5-154 – Jeremy Gallon, WR, Michigan.
Absolute smurf at 5-foot-7, 185-pounds. Still, if you’re looking for a burner to play slot if Kerley (5-9, 188) gets hurt, I think Gallon and TJ Jones (Notre Dame) are two small, speedy guys worth a serious look.
6-195 – Matt Patchan, OT, Boston College.
Offensive line depth is never a bad thing, and assuming the WR/DB issues have been addressed, Patchan could have good value here. He’s had injuries that likely will drop him in the draft, but he’s a strong athlete for 6-6, 305.
6-209 – Storm Johnson, RB, UCF
Chris Johnson-Chris Ivory could be lightning and thunder, or maybe CJ has nothing left. Bilal Powell is an unrestricted free agent in 2015. Unclear if Mike Goodson is on the roster next month. Johnson catches passes and runs well. Big fan. RB alternative: Marlon Grice of ASU.
6-201- Aaron Colvin, CB, Oklahoma
Coming off an ACL injury. Had a very nice career at Oklahoma and could have been a 3rd/4th round pick if he wasn’t injured. Definitely worth a shot if he’s still on the board in the 6th.
6-213 – Jordan Zumwalt, LB, UCLA.
Hitting machine. Feels like a Rex Ryan type of player. Remember this hit on Logan Thomas? Maybe he plays ST and is a backup, but he hits people.
7-233 – Kerry Hyder, DL, Texas Tech
No way Rex Ryan goes an entire draft without taking a big meaty menace. Hyder (6-3, 290) is an undersized project. Damon Harrison (6-2, 339) went undrafted and in his second season started 16 games for the Jets.
Primary needs for the Jets:
1) Cornerback. Right now, 2nd year pro Dee Milliner is the No. 1 CB. There isn’t a No. 2 CB. Kyle Wilson, who has struggled during his tenure in New York, is probably the nickle corner. Why is CB paramount? They face Aaron Rodgers in week two, Jay Cutler in week three, Matt Stafford in week four, Philip Rivers in week five, and then Peyton Manning and Tom Brady. That’s six of last year’s Top 10 passing offenses.
2) Wide receiver. The Eric Decker acquisition was important, but they still lack a true No. 1 receiver. The No. 3 receiver is Jeremy Kerley (5-foot-9 slot guy) and the battle for No. 4 probably comes down to David Nelson or disappointing Stephen Hill.
3) Tight end. Jeff Cumberland is the top tight end on the roster; Zach Sudfeld is No. 2 and he had five receptions last year.
4-6) All positions where the Jets could improve in mid-late rounds: safety (Landry and Allen are the starters, but they struggled against tight ends so badly last year, Rex Ryan brought in that fossil Ed Reed), edge rusher (Pace is coming off a 10-sack season, but he turns 34 in October); and ILB (David Harris is entering the final year of his contract).