Archive for ‘2012 Draft’

April 26, 2012

Could the Jets be Getting Ready to Trade Revis?

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(Schultz/AP)

Obviously much of what makes news just before the draft turns out to be part of an orchestrated smoke-screen of misinformation sent out to mask an organizations true intention. Normally, I would immediately chalk up the recent speculation that the Jets might have interest in Tent Richardson as pure gamesmanship. Surely a team that has much bigger needs at positions like OT, OLB, S and WR would not consider giving up the number of picks required to jump from the 16 spot to the 3 spot for what most would consider a luxury pick.

However, with Mr. T’s well documented proclivity for moving up, one needs to consider the possibility. As I looked at the math in swapping draft picks, it just didn’t add up. It is widely thought that the Browns will take Richardson with their 4th overall pick; so that would mean that the Jets would need to get the Viking’s 3rd overall pick if they want Richardson. While the old draft chart is not as accurate as it once was now that the rookie wage scale is in place, it is still a useful tool. According to it, the number 3 pick has a value of 2,200. All of the Jets picks (excluding the compensatory ones as they can not be included in a trade) are collectively less than 1,700. The Jets would need to dip into future drafts to make the deal work.

However, what if the Jets were to trade the person who, by the end of his career, I believe will be the consensus best CB in the history of the NFL? We’ve all seen the hold-out chatter AGAIN. We know that the Jets do not get along with Revis’ agent. We also know that the Buccaneers are sitting with the 5th overall pick are in need of a CB. They also have a lot of money to spend. If this deal were to happen, I could see the Jets trading Revis to the Buccaneers for the 5th overall pick and then trading the 5th pick to the Vikings to get the Viking’s 3rd pick. To get the 3rd pick, the Jets would likely need to trade their 2nd and 3rd round selections (47th and 77th) for the Vikings 4th and 6th round selections (98th and 175th).

To be clear, I am not saying the Jets should do this deal. I certainly do not think they should. If anything, I think the Jets should trade down if possible. I am simply saying that, given the Jets track-record of moving up and the Revis contract issues, this could be a plausible scenario.

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April 24, 2012

The Jets’ #1 Draft Need

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Stew Milne-US PRESSWIRE

An elite pass-rusher is simply not even close to our most immediate or pressing need and should not be addressed with our first draft pick.  Many analysts believe that the Jets will take the best available pass-rusher with the 16th pick or, worse yet, trade up for a short-armed pass-rusher.

While it would be great to have an elite pass-rush, an elite pass-rush by no means directly translates into wins.  For example, neither of the two teams that were tied with the most sacks last season even made the playoffs (Minnesota and Philadelphia).  Having an elite pass rush is simply not essential to winning – especially for the Jets.  The Jets have arguably the best group of CB’s in the NFL.  By having an outstanding secondary, it eases the need for defenses to have an outstanding pass rush.  You need to be good at at least one to have a sound defense.  If you can be great at one and even just average at the other, you’ll have a very good defense – which is what the Jets have.  The Jets were in the middle of the pack last year in sacks.  They were tied with the Pittsburgh Steelers at 17th in the league with 35 sacks.  In each of the last three years, the Jets’ defense has been ranked in the top five (yds/g).  In 2009, when the Jets had the number 1 ranked defense, they had fewer sacks and were ranked lower in sacks than last season.  It would be great if we could improve our pass rush through the draft, however, our other needs are too severe for us to afford that luxury.  With our CB’s, it is possible to have a top defense while having just an average pass-rush.

In a year when it seems that there are more holes in the roster than usual going into the draft, one, in my opinion, looms larger than any other.  Offensive Tackle is a need that I believe needs to be addressed with our first pick.  My choice would be Jonathan Martin.  While he was once considered a top ten pick, following his lackluster pro day, his draft stock has fallen considerably.  That said, his subpar performance at his pro day doesn’t detract from a stellar collegiate career at Standford.  In addition to being of prototypical size, he is a highly intelligent player with high character and effort.  Martin turned down the opportunity to attend Harvard.  Had he opted to attend Harvard, he would have been the first fourth-generation African-American Harvard student.  Martin is a player, like Furgeson and Mangold, that could be plugged into our line day one and be a stalwart contributor for the next 10 years.

I think games are won from the inside out – the battle in the trenches is crucial.  Inconsistent and poor play by the OL negatively impacts everything teams try and do offensively.  QB’s can’t throw when given no time and RB’s can’t run when given no holes.  Nothing else matters offensively if you’re line is not effective.

The Jets were ranked 22nd in the league in 3rd down efficiency last season converting 34.6% of 3rd downs.  In 2010, the Jets were ranked 11th in 3rd down efficiency converting 40.4% of 3rd downs.  I believe the main reason for this sharp decline was the departure of Damien Woody.  They are certainly big shoes to fill and, in my opinion, it should be the Jets number one priority.  If we can improve that 3rd down efficiency, it obviously helps our defense.  One of the core benefits of a ground and pound philosophy is to minimize the opponents offensive output by limiting their opportunities to score.  It also helps to keep our defense fresh.  Last year, the Jets lost several games in the forth quarter because the defensive gave up critical plays at the end of the game.  Adding a solid RT will help our defense by extending our offensive drives thus keeping opponent’s offenses off the field and keeping our defense fresh.

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February 25, 2012

In the 2012 NFL Draft, the New York Jets Should Select…

Despite our mild temperatures, it has been a cold dark winter for Jets fans.  I’m sick to my stomach about the prospect keeping some players on our roster who are clearly not team guys.  That said, the Combine will be in full swing today and we can once again bask in the only thing the Jets have had for the last 40+ years – potential.  I have started to look at some of the prospects in this year’s draft and have assembled an initial watch list of 38 prospects.  You can click here to download the list.  The Jets obviously have a lot of needs but, as of now, here’s who I’d like to see the Jets draft:

1st round / 16th pick: Courtney Upshaw, OLB, Alabama 

After the combine and individual workouts and as free agency starts to take shape, my list will almost certainly change but, as of now, I actually like these guys quite a bit.  A lot of NFL 3-4 OLB’s are converted from college DE’s.  Alabama is one of the few elite college programs that run an NFL style 3-4 defense and have an elite OLB entering the draft.  I think he’d be a good fit for the Jets in a definite area of need.

2nd round / 47th pick: Zebrie Sanders, OT, Florida State 

We are in obvious need of help on the offensive line.  I like to draft offensive lineman either really early or really late in the draft.  With high picks, offensive lineman tend to be safer bets (there are fewer busts than in other positions).  You can also find real value in the late rounds.  There are many reasons why I like Zebrie Sanders.  He is highly skilled, powerful, durable and versatile (he can play both sides of the line).  He’s a very bright guy and has high character (he is an Eagle scout).  We need to start replenishing the void of high character guys in the locker room.  Offensive lineman, given their historic durability, is a great place to start.  Plus if things get a little tense in the locker room, Zebrie can break out his viola and calm the team’s nerves (although I could see Bart Scott going Jim Belushi on him).

3rd round / 78th pick: Nick Toon, WR, Wisconsin 

Wide Receivers are deep in this year’s draft and there’s a good chance that we could pick up a good one in the 3rd round.  If Al Toon’s son is still on the board for our 78th pick, I think the Jets would be smart to nab him.  While Nick Toon has had to battle some nagging injuries at his Dad’s alma mater, at 6’ 2” and 220 lbs he has the physicality to become a starting WR in the NFL.

4th round / 108th pick: Harrison Smith, SS, Notre Dame 

I like drafting Safeties and Running Backs in the middle rounds.  While I’m not that impressed with this year’s crop of Safeties (other than Mark Barron of Alabama), Notre Dame’s Harrison Smith is ranked as this year’s third best Strong Safety and should be on the board for our 108th pick.  Harrison is properly sized at 6’ 2” and 212 lbs and is a hard hitter.  He will definitely be a bit of a project but he was very productive in college and should be able to contribute immediately on special teams.

5th round / 146th pick: Robert Turbin, RB, Utah State 

Robert Turbin of Utah State is a big, powerful and surprisingly quick running back that is also a reliable receiver and blocker.  He could be an every down back for the Jets or at least push Shonn Greene and provide some competition.  Turbin has some durability concerns as he missed an entire season with a torn ACL.  There is also some concerns about the limited competition he faced.  That said, he was highly productive last year rushing for 1,517 yards and 19 touchdowns.  He is well worth taking a flier on if he’s still available for the Jets 146th pick.

6th round / 177th pick: Ryan Broyles, WR, Oklahoma 

While I’m almost never an advocate of drafting low character guys, Ryan Broyles has stayed out of trouble since he was arrested as a freshman for attempting to steal gasoline.  I guess a positive is that he was caught so he must not have had much practice.  Given that he hasn’t had any other incidents since then, he warrants a closer look.  He has been the most prolific wide receiver in Oklahoma history.  In addition, he could contribute right away in the return game.  While he’s best suited as a slot receiver and his skill set is very similar to that of Jeremy Kerley’s, he’s definitely worth interviewing and working out.

7th round / 207th pick: Rhett Ellison, TE, Southern California

At this point in the draft I think teams should target guys that can contribute on special teams.  While I believe we are in need of a good TE complement to Keller, I’m not sure Ellison is the man.  Ellison is a guy that improved throughout his career at USC and will likely continue to improve.  He was extremely versatile there playing TE, FB, WR and special teams (he even blocked a field-goal attempt).  He is known as having very good intangibles and high character.  He is also the son of an NFL linebacker.  I think Ellison is the perfect selection for this point in the draft.

Please let me know what you think of these suggested selections.