The New York Jets need to add more to their overall pass rush. It would make sense for them to have linebacker Darron Lee at the very top of their draft board.
The first words heard come out of Todd Bowles mouth when last season ended were the Jets needing to get faster on defense. Todd Bowles. When that statement was made, you start making connections with upcoming prospects and Lee’s name immediately stood out. Lee would be a great fit in Bowles’ defense thanks to everything he brings to the table.
A year removed from playing as a high school quarterback, Lee was a red-shirt freshman and started his college career at Ohio State replacing a great linebacker in Ryan Shazier. Like Shazier, Lee is very athletic, if not more athletic than Shazier who is currently with the Pittsburgh Steelers. Lee has even better coverage ability with a knack for finding the football.
Nov 7, 2015; Columbus, OH, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes linebacker Darron Lee (43) gets the crowd fired up during first quarter action versus the Minnesota Golden Gophers at Ohio Stadium. Ohio State leads 14-0 at halftime. Mandatory Credit: Joe Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports
This guy has a relentless motor and a great tackler, always making big plays in big moments which is exactly what the Jets need. It’s been quite some time since the Jets got major speed and production from the linebacker position as Lee can step right in and deliver.
Both Lee and Shazier have similar traits. The most notable knock on Lee is his frame. Just like Shazier, they don’t have the body type to get too much bigger. Lee needs to get stronger no doubt about it, which is something that will happen once he’s in an NFL strength and conditioning program.
More from The Jet Press
- NY Jets should target TE Hunter Henry in free agency
- NY Jets: Why the team should target cornerback Shaquill Griffin
- NY Jets reportedly non-tendering linebacker Harvey Langi
- NY Jets: Why the team should not cut Jamison Crowder
- NY Jets should try to sign Kenny Golladay in free agency
It’s something about linebackers from Ohio State that produce quality athletes. Shazier, just a few years in the league hasn’t disappointed one bit, nor will Lee.
Bowles is drooling of the potential defensive formations he can unleash with an athletic linebacker like Lee.
The Jets can use him in nickel packages guarding the opposing teams’ running back to solidify their run-stopping ability. Something that’s always been a fear when in the past they would use ex-Jet Demario Davis in this role that he didn’t execute well in.
They can even use Lee in their base defense, especially if they get caught off-guard in a hurry-up offense just like most NFL offenses use these days. Line him up over the slot receiver spot or use him in press coverage with the help of Marcus Gilchrist over the top.
Overall, being able to open up the play-book on defense makes Lee a great addition to have and should be the Jets’ top draft choice if available. Considering the Jets have the No. 20 overall pick in the first round of the 2016 NFL Draft, he might very well drop to them as to which it’ll be an easy decision to make thanks to his speedy skill-set.