Dec 30, 2012; Orchard Park, NY, USA; New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez (6) on the sideline during the second half against the Buffalo Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Bills beat the Jets 28-9. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

A Look Back: The New York Jets 2009 Draft Class

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We spend a lot of time around here looking ahead to the upcoming NFL draft, and with good reason. It is going to be the “lifeline” of the team, as John Idzik has put it, so we are all paying attention to it with anticipation.

Tonight, I want to look back at the 2009 draft class. Specifically, how we feel about the draft class. That class consisted of three players only, and one of them still remains on the team. The players in that class were Shonn Greene, Matt Slauson and Mark Sanchez. We know that Shonn Greene has migrated down to Tennessee to join CJ2K and the Titans. Yesterday, we learned that Matt Slauson signed a one year contract with the Bears.

That leaves Mark Sanchez as the only remaining member of the class. We all know how everyone feels, and the range of feelings, that are had about this quarterback. So, the question is, how do we grade that draft class?

I see many people calling it an “F” because the guys that have gone, are being replaced by likely one year players, and they have Mark. I am going to take a different take, and tell you why the class is not so bad.

Here’s the thing. Eventually, guys are moved on to other teams. That is the business of football, and the business of sports in general. That doesn’t take away from whatever they had done while they were members of the team they started with, and that is true for Matt Slauson and Shonn Greene.

After Alan Faneca left the Jets following the 2009 season, Matt Slauson stepped in and started every game ever since. Just because he wasn’t re-signed, you can’t take that accomplishment away from him. He, drafted by the Jets, was a solid starter for three years. Cores of a team are changed, that doesn’t take away the value of the pick to begin with.

The same goes for Shonn Greene. OK Jets fans, stop moaning and groaning at the sight of his name, he did play a role when he was the backup to Jones and to Tomlinson. Coming off the bench, pounding on defenses late in the game, Greene was quite effective, despite everyone’s attempts to forget that. Everyone remember that TD against the Chargers in the 2009 playoffs? No, he never turned into a great bell-cow running back for 25 carries per game, but he hasn’t been useless for his entire Jets career.

Mark Sanchez is not useless either, despite my being one of the few people left that say so. His work in 2009-2010 can not be forgotten. The man does have ability, and whether or not this is his last year in NY, he was productive early in his career.

What is my point? My point is, that despite the fact that 2 out of 3 members of the 2009 draft class are gone, and the third might be gone by the end of 2013, doesn’t mean that they are an F. To me, they are a solid “C”, as they performed well, but being gone brings them down a little.

What do you guys think?

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