New York Jets: Browns/Eagles blockbuster trade affects team

By Anthony Russo
Dec 29, 2015; Fort Worth, TX, USA; California Golden Bears quarterback Jared Goff (16) throws a pass in the second quarter against the Air Force Falcons at Amon G. Carter Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 29, 2015; Fort Worth, TX, USA; California Golden Bears quarterback Jared Goff (16) throws a pass in the second quarter against the Air Force Falcons at Amon G. Carter Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports /
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The New York Jets were affected when the blockbuster first-round trade between the Cleveland Browns and Philadelphia Eagles took place. It has more than likely changed their overall draft board.

With the news that the Browns and Eagles have completed a deal for the 2nd overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft, the implication is Jared Goff and Carson Wentz in some order will be the first and second pick in the event. The Jets had an interest in the 2nd overall pick but it seems that it would’ve been too costly to move up 18 spots. So what are the Jets going to do come draft day?

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The possibility is very real that if the Jets want to get into the top 10, they can still find a way to move up into the top 10, especially considering the fact they still have a very valuable trade chip in defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson. However, the only other quarterback projected to be taken in the first round is Paxton Lynch. Lynch’s value has completely skyrocketed with news of this trade.

new york jets
new york jets /

Feb 27, 2016; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Memphis Tigers quarterback Paxton Lynch throws a pass during the 2016 NFL Scouting Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Teams like the Jets, Browns, Denver Broncos and San Francisco 49ers are all in need of a quarterback and because of the lack of depth at the position in this draft, Lynch is just about guaranteed to be taken in the top 10. It’s not guaranteed that giving up the amount of picks needed to move into the top 10 is worth giving up to get Lynch. In the same breath, there isn’t any prospect that is worth moving up for. This draft is one of the deepest in recent memory and the Jets can still find a quality player at No. 20.

If the Jets don’t move up that would probably mean the Jets would stay put at 20 and either target a pass rusher or offensive lineman which would mean they would probably pick a quarterback later on. Guys like Christian Hackenburg or Connor Cook will be targeted in the 2nd or 3rd round and they would compete with Geno Smith and Bryce Petty for the starting job.

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While they shouldn’t move up for Lynch, they have to add a quarterback to the roster.

With Ryan Fitzpatrick still a big question mark, the quarterback situation is probably the biggest concern the Jets have going into this draft.

Unfortunately for them, despite this being a deep draft, this quarterback class is not a particularly deep one.

And given that the Jets have a “win now” roster, finding a quarterback that can be trusted to lead the Jets forward whether it be one that’s on the roster now or one that they acquire via free agency or draft, will be of the utmost importance for general manager Mike Maccagnan.

Now with multiple needs, how much should the Jets look into trading down? They should certainly look into it and if a deal presents itself that is a really good one, they should consider it and move down. However, the Jets are in win now mode. Stockpiling picks like the Browns or Tennessee Titans are doing doesn’t really help with the roster they have in place.

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The best move seems to be to not move at all. The Jets should stay put at No. 20, fill a need with a really good player and address their quarterback needs later on. That is easier said than done, of course. With so many factors and unknowns heading into the draft, the Jets have a lot to consider before trying to make a move that could change the direction of the franchise for better or worse for years to come.

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