Weekly NFL Mock Draft – “With The First Pick” – The New York Jets
By Sean Lester Durham
Nov 30, 2013; Chapel Hill, NC, USA; North Carolina Tar Heels tight end Eric Ebron (85) on the field in the third quarter. The Blue Devils defeated the Tar Heels 27-25 at Kenan Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports
This week our Mock Draft is presented to us from the guys over at (withthefirstpick.com). It’s a two round draft with some interesting selections to say the least. I’ll highlight each pick per round for the New York Jets and like always I’ll add brief analysis after each pick, so let’s gets to it.
“Round 1 – 13. New York Jets – Eric Ebron, TE North Carolina
The Jets just need any type of weapon that can go out and catch the ball from Geno Smith. Ebron may have the most upside of any offensive weapon available at this pick and give them options. Ebron can line up all over the field and is a terrific athlete. Jeff Cumberland is not a bad player and the combination of the two could be pretty good for the Jets and open up opportunities for plays like Stephen Hill on the outside. Plus, everyone knows ESPN is just dying to run the New York Jets tight end montage.
At 6’4 245, Eric Ebron is undoubtedly a terrific athlete playing the TE position and in today’s NFL having an extremely talented and gifted TE that causes severe match-up problems for opposing defenses is something being coveted by all teams. Ebron is a top prospect not because of his ability to catch the ball but because he has the ability to be both a dangerous receiver and impact blocker. On the next level, Ebron wouldn’t just be a TE he would simply be a weapon as he has the skill set to be utilized in some H-back roles as well and with Oregon’s Colt Lyerla out of the picture, Ebron undoubtedly has a real good chance at being the first TE off the boards in this April’s draft. Having said that, in this particular mock I don’t like this selection for the Jets and it has nothing to do with Ebron and everything to do with the fact that Clemson WR Sammy Watkins is still on the board when this selection is “made.”
In my opinion, Watkins is the top WR prospect heading into this April’s draft and because of his skill set, I don’t think it’s even close. There are other WRs that I think are talented but none that completely match the skill set of Sammy Watkins. Geno Smith has undoubtedly struggled this season but part of that struggle has to do with the fact that the Jets are without a play-maker on the offensive side of the ball, a play-maker that the defense has to game plan for and account for at all times. Watkins can be that guy and with him still on the board here I would without a doubt make him the first pick. Watkins instantly opens up the passing game for Geno and this offensive as he is someone you have to focus on at all times.
Bottom line – I don’t like the pick, there are better options for this Jets team on the board at this time.
Here are some Eric Ebron highlights for those that are unfamiliar with him. Enjoy….
Nov 16, 2013; Nashville, TN, USA; Kentucky Wildcats safety Glenn Faulkner (18) shoves Vanderbilt Commodores wide receiver Jordan Matthews (87) out of bounds during the second half at Vanderbilt Stadium. Vanderbilt won 22-6. Mandatory Credit: Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports
Round 2 – 44. New York Jets – Jordan Matthews, WR Vanderbilt
After snagging Ebron in the first round, the Jets are fortunate to find Geno Smith another weapon in Matthews. Smith now has a talented option on the inside and one on the outside, both which bring size and athleticism. They would also make it so the presently injured but physically impressive Stephen Hill would be a nice third option that can stretch the field and hopefully develop into the player they thought he was when they drafted him.”
Well this one is a bit more complex. Seeing as though Watkins would be my choice here in the 1st round, I would be reluctant to go WR again in the round but you wouldn’t have to pull my leg to get me aboard the “Matthews” Train. Again, it was very painful watching the Jets on the offensive side of the ball this season primarily because of Geno’s targets or lack thereof. Jets’ WRs struggled all season to get open for Geno and that’s an issue that is no good for a rookie QB. At 6’3 205 Matthews is a very solid target that possesses skills to be a very effective WR in the NFL. He isn’t a speedster like Watkins but has deceptive speed to leave defenders behind when grabbing passes in space. Matthews doesn’t shy away from contact over the middle and has very good concentration when it comes to bringing catches in. He has surprisingly good route running abilities that should translate excellently to the next level and that could be an asset for a QB like Geno Smith who will be looking to prove himself starting this summer. The more targets the better for Geno considering Stephen Hill is one dropped Snickers bar away from being cut, Holmes’ status is really up in the air as he has been vastly ineffective and the rest of the WR corp is made up of players that aren’t really game changers and play makers outside of Jermey Kerley. Having said that, there are a few players that I wouldn’t mind taking before Matthews here in this particular mock.
Johnny Manziel – Texas A&M Darqueze Dennard – Michigan State David Fales – San Jose State
There are three players still on the board in this mock that I would be compelled to take a look at before Matthews but not by much.
Bottom line – I like the pick, I like Matthews and wouldn’t cry at all if he’s the Jets selection here.
Now feast on some Matthews highlights…..enjoy.