WR, ORT, OLB, SS, FS, ILB, DE
Round 1 - Quinton Coples/DE
Round 2 - Stephen Hill/WR
Round 3 - Demario Davis/LB
Round 6 - Josh Bush/S
Round 6 - Terrance Ganaway/RB
Round 6 - Robert Griffin/G
Round 7 - Antonio Allen/S
Round 7 - Jordan White/WR
WR, ORT, OLB
After suffering through a non-playoff appearance in 2011 with an 8-8 record, the Jets are looking to bounce back this season with an influx of talent from this year’s NFL Draft. However, they didn’t have selections in rounds four or five. They did, however, have extra picks in rounds six and seven.
To start things off, the team addressed the depth at defensive end with first-round pick Quinton Coples. The issue with Coples has never been talent; it’s been about the desire to get better. When he’s at his best -- as we saw during Senior Bowl week -- he can be flat-out dominant. Coples, who is expected to start immediately, will line up at DE for the Jets’ 3-4 defensive scheme, but he could slide inside when they go to a 4-3 front. Coples played well inside during his junior season at the University of North Carolina.
Another need was filled in the second round with Stephen Hill. The Jets have needed speed and size for a while at wide receiver, and Hill fill both of those needs. However, he has a long way to go as a route runner and his college stats weren’t overwhelming, so Hill’s maturation process to the NFL level might take a big longer than expected. But as one personnel executive said, Hill’s size and speed makes him a very intriguing prospect for the long haul.
Not only will third-round Demario Davis fill a depth need at ILB, he has a good chance at starting in year two. That’s because current starting ILB Bart Scott, who turns 33 next August, has no guaranteed money left in his contract after this season. His cap number for 2013 is $8.65 million. It’s not a secret that there was a good chance the Jets would have cut or traded Scott had his $4.2 million base salary for this season not been fully guaranteed. One NFL executive said he could see Davis starting for 8-10 years, if healthy, for the Jets based on his talent level, which is strong. The only knock on him is he played against a lower level of competition at Arkansas St., which explains why he wasn’t selected higher.
The next selection, sixth-round pick S Josh Bush, has a legitimate shot to make the team as a fourth safety. A former cornerback in high school, Bush has decent range for a safety. The Jets seemingly had good depth at running back with Shonn Greene, Joe McKnight and Bilal Powell, but that didn’t stop them from selecting another one with their second of three six-round picks. Terrance Ganaway has good size (5-11, 240) for the position, but he will really need to have a strong training camp and preseason in order to make the team this fall. The final sixth-rounder, G Robert Griffin, has the size the Jets want at the position—big and strong. And because the team has little depth at guard, Griffin could make a strong push for a roster spot in training camp.
Seventh-round pick S Antonio Allen is a long shot to make the team, but has really good size the position. He figures to land on the practice squad this fall. Their final pick, WR Jordan White, suffered a broken foot during an OTA practice, so his chances of making the team aren’t good. However, it’s not like the Jets are deep at the position, either.
The Jets should get three starters out of this draft--and as early as year two. But you also can make a case that their top-three picks have a lot to prove based on various factors.