With the NFL draft just a couple of months away, we start to look at what the Jets biggest needs are, and how to fill them. With the 9th pick overall, the Jets should be able to pick an impact player at a position of need. Any Jets fan knows that a dominant pass rusher off of the edge would take the Jets defense to that next level. Here are some suggestions as to how the Jets could fill this need via the draft.
1. Jarvis Jones: Jarvis Jones is a special player. Jones did not have the normal collegiate career though. Jones started his college career at USC. He was a very important part of the Trojan defense until he suffered a very serious injury that would keep him out for the season. Jones then transferred to Georgia for his sophomore and junior seasons. While at Georgia, Jones was an immediate team leader (something the Jets could definitely use). According to Bulldog’s coach, Mark Richt, Jones possessed the ideal size, strength and speed to be an impact player in the NFL. After watching tapes of him, it is hard to disagree with those comments. Jones is all over the field, his speed shows as he seems to be able to beat the tackle on the outside to get to the QB with ease. What makes Jones special is that along with his speed on the outside, he also has the strength to go up one on one with the offensive guards. With a great variety of moves, Jones is a match up nightmare for the offensive line. What Jones needs to improve upon is that he sometimes can be over aggressive against the run, which causes him to be in a poor position to make a play on the ball carrier. Another thing Jones struggles with is his man coverage, he is seen more as a pass rusher and run stopper than a coverage linebacker. One other issue with Jones is his medical condition. Jones suffers from spinal stenosis. This injury has not had an effect on his play yet, but overtime there is a fear that Jones’ career may be cut short because of it. It is still unknown though, Jones could have a perfectly normal career. Overall, I believe Jones would thrive in the Jets defense. With Calvin Pace and Bryan Thomas almost certainly not coming back in 2013, the need for an OLB is huge. Jones is the type of player who could step right into the starting lineup and make an impact. Jones will be able to help the pass rush which has been very poor over the last few seasons. Although Jones has some question marks, I believe Jones would fill a huge need for the Jets.
2. Dion Jordan: Dion Jordan is a very rare player. At 6’7, Jordan has the speed of a strong safety. But instead, Jordan was one of the best pass rushers in all of college football in 2012. Jordan possesses incredible speed for a guy his size and can play all over the field. Although his specialty is getting to the QB, Jordan has the ability to drop into coverage and play man to man against a TE, or the slot receiver. Since the Jets are lucky enough to play the Patriots twice a year, a guy like Jordan seems even more valuable. NE tandem of Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez is a nightmare for each team they face. While you do not draft a guy just because he would help against one opponent, having Jordan being able to lineup against Gronk/Hernandez could be a huge boost to the Jets defense. With his versatility, Jordan can be an every down linebacker right away. Although there are many positives with Jordan, there are some things he needs to work on. Jordan needs to work on improving in the run game and making sure to wrap up on his tackles. He sometimes tries to make the “flashy” play, instead of making the smart play. Jordan is a very rare prospect with the potential to be a star in the NFL. He is another pass rusher that I believe the Jets should monitor very closely as draft day comes near.