The New York Jets report for voluntary Off Season work at their facilities today, so what better way to celebrate the occasion than to create a Mock Draft of players I'd like to see join the organization. The Jets enter this years Draft with 12 Picks. This was due to a plan GM John Idzik set into motion last year during his first year running the Jets Free Agency. The Darrelle Revis trade gained the team an extra 4th Round selection and the savy decision to move on from some of their own players while adding players cut from other teams garnered the Jets 4 Compensatory Picks. A 4th and 3 6th Rounders. Expect the Jets to be big players in this upcoming Draft.
For my Mock Draft I want to evaluate what the team already has and what they need. After a slow start to Free Agency had many Jets fans worried (my hand is raised) John Idzik made sure that the needs, although significant, aren't many. Entering Free Agency the Jets had a Dominant Defensive Line, starters and backups, and a solid RB Core. Every other group had varying holes. The Jets added Free Agent WRs Eric Decker, the highest rated Free Agent at his position, from the Broncos and speedy, but often injured Jacoby Ford from the Raiders.
QB Michael Vick was added after he was released by the Eagles to COMPETE with QB Geno Smith. Vick will either be a solid backup that can step in if Geno struggles, or the starter to what the Jets hope is a more explosive Offense. That Offense became even more dynamic when the Titans released a player of their own and the Jets added him to the 6th Ranked Rushing Offense. RB Chris Johnson brings speed and a threat to take the ball 90 yards to the End Zone. With these moves QB, and RB join the Defensive Line as positions that are secure.
With OG Willie Colon coming off a biceps tear and the expected struggles of Rookie LG Brian Winters the Jets will need to bolster the interior of their line sometime during the Draft. Antonio Cromartie was released and now the Jets need a Man to Man Cover Corner to play opposite Dee Milliner, who proved in the last month at least, that he was the best Corner in last years Draft. Calvin Pace may have had 10 Sacks last year, but at 33 he clearly isn't the long term answer and OLB has been a need for the Jets for the past decade or so. A weak Secondary could always be helped by a strong Pass Rush. The Jets added to the WR position, but they have a chance in this Draft to make a now "serviceable" position into one of strength. Many think that the Jets should and will select a WR early in this Draft. The Receiving Core also consists of TEs, which sorely needs improvement over just Jeff Cumberland and Zack Sudfelds, two undrafted players. Lastly, the Jets Secondary also needs improvement in the Safety position. The Jets need a game changer roaming the middle of the field. Even if they bring back Ed Reed after the Draft they need a young stud that can develop into a Ball Hawk for the foreseeable future. So there you have it, WR, CB, OLB, TE, OG, and S are all positions that can be helped with a strong Draft this year.
1st Round: Odell Beckham Jr WR LSU
Beckham has deceptive speed and under the radar hands. He will immediately help on Special Teams and be allowed to learn the game and develope into a #1 WR. With him in the fold the Jets now have a complete WR unit. A much improved unit over last year.
2nd Round: Austin Sefarin-Jenkins TE WASH
In my Mock Draft I have the Jets trading their two 4th Rounders, 5th, 6th and 7th Round picks to add an extra early 2nd Round Pick. If it doesn't take this many selections to make this trade happen, then that's better, but a trade up to get more quality players is needed. Adding this big and talented TE to the mix is just what the Offense needs to be complete no matter who ends up winning the QB position. Put on tape and you will see why many people say that TEs are the QBs best friend. This guy has the ability to catch contested passes and run across the middle. He also has the size to develope into a solid blocker.
2nd Round: Kyle Van Noy OLB BYU
Calvin Pace may have had a career year lady season, but the Jets need an infusion of young blood into their Linebacker Core. Kyle Van Noy, on a smaller scale, is suffering from the same criticism as Jadavean Clowney. Both players cooled it down in their last season of their collegiate careers. The nay sayers will question their motor and love for the game, but as long as they give their all once they are playing for the Jets, I could care less that they tried not to get hurt before they signed a multi million dollar contact. Kyle Van Noy should be a 1st Round selection. His speed and coverage skills will fit the Jets perfectly. Playing behind this Defensive Line allowed Calvin Pace to notch 10 sacks, so imagine what a pure speed rusher can do.
3rd Round: Ed Reynolds S Stanford
If Ed Reynolds falls to the Jets it would be a steal that would allow the Jets to make significant changes to their Safety position. Reynolds could be the Ball Hawk the Jets haven't had since Kerry Rhodes, but Reynolds is also a solid tackler. This will allow Rex to move Antonio Allen to Stong Safety, which is his more natural position and allow Reynolds to split time with a Veteran while he learns the scheme.
4th Round: EJ Gaines CB MIZZ
The Jets needed help to their Secondary, but that didn't necessarily mean they needed another first round selection. Adding a Pass Rushing OLB and a Ball Hawking FS will help the cornerbacks. Adding Gaines gives the Jets another CB to develop into a potential starter. He is a smart player that can hold up against bigger receivers. With Kyle Wilson nearing the end of his contact is smart for the Jets to add more players to the position even if they aren't going to be the long term starter. 6th Round: Colt Lyerla TE Oregon
Another steal for the Jets due to Colt having character issues, but with Sefarin-Jenkins already added to the mix this is a gamble that the Jets would be wise to take. Lyerla is another player with 1st Round talent. He isn't the Blocker that Sefarin-Jenkins is, but he is a threat in the passing game. This will also add to the Jets Mantra of competition. The Jets now have a complete and deadly passing attack.
6th Round: Ryan Groy OG WISC
This is basically for depth. A team can never have enough fattys in the trenches. The Jets selected two late round Offensive Linemen last year, and with all of the needs already filled its just about bringing in bodies to compete.
6th Round: Preston Brown ILB Louisville
The last pick is a player they hope can help out on Special Teams. Giving the opposing Offense a long journey to the End Zone will help out the Defense and the team as a whole. This late in the Draft your not looking for starters, just role players. Brown will still be given a chance to help the team even if it doesn't mean playing in the base Defense.
So there you have my Mock Draft/State of the Jets. Leave your comments below on what you think and also what you would like done in this upcoming Draft if you were the GM. Is there a player you feel the Jets NEED to get, or a trade scenario you would like the team to make? Leave your comment or Draft Picks just for bragging rights if the players turn out to be good NFL Players or Jets.