Marcus Maye poised to break second round pick curse

ATLANTA, GA - DECEMBER 5: Wide receiver Calvin Ridley
ATLANTA, GA - DECEMBER 5: Wide receiver Calvin Ridley /

The New York Jets most recent second round picks haven’t necessarily been the most successful selections. Could safety Marcus Maye be the one to finally buck this trend?

Although it may be a bit early to jump to any wholehearted conclusions, rookie safety Marcus Maye has gotten his NFL career off to a fantastic start and has all the makings of a star player for the New York Jets.

The Jets front office and fans alike hope that Maye, along with first round selection Jamal Adams, can become a dominant safety duo for years to come. And hope is all that the Jets can ask for out of a second round pick that has been plagued by injuries and underperformers over the past decade or so.

To further put this so-called curse into perspective, let’s take a look at all of the New York Jets second round picks dating back to 2005:

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2005: Mike Nugent (Kicker), Justin Miller (Cornerback/Return Specialist)

2006: Kellen Clemens (Quarterback)

2007: David Harris (Linebacker)

2010: Vladimir Ducasse (Offensive Guard/Tackle)

2012: Stephen Hill (Wide Receiver)

2013: Geno Smith (Quarterback)

2014: Jace Amaro (Tight End)

2015: Devin Smith (Wide Receiver)

2016: Christian Hackenberg (Quarterback)

The only name there that should trigger any sort of positive reaction is David Harris (unless you’re still a Geno Smith fan and hope that he finds success in the NFL) who is far and above the most successful player on that list.

After Harris, the player with the most successful career on the list above is……Mike Nugent? Don’t even get me started on picking a kicker in the second round.

What’s even more staggering is that only one of the players listed above remains on the Jets active roster today. That man is Christian Hackenberg, who is yet to play in an NFL game and although the jury is still out on him, you would be hard pressed to find many people who feel that the selection of Hackenberg in the second round was a smart move.

Thus, it’s clear that Maye doesn’t have to be the next Ed Reed to break this recent trend. He doesn’t need to be the most impressive rookie on the field, except that’s just what he’s been.

ESPN’s Rich Cimini went as far as to say that the former Florida Gator has been the most impactful rookie to this point.

“So far, Maye has been the most impressive rookie in camp, displaying physicality near the line of scrimmage and ball skills in pass coverage. The Jets are ecstatic with his progress; they feel Maye and Adams will be a future Pro Bowl tandem at safety.”

That’s high praise for a player on a team that also happened to draft a player who was widely considered to be a top five talent in this past year’s draft class, in his rookie teammate Jamal Adams.

Manish Mehta of the Daily News has also taken note of Maye’s impressive progress:

“Maye has been everywhere in camp, opening eyes with his brand of physical play near the line of scrimmage and roaming prowess far from it. If you didn’t know better, you’d think there were two of him out there. Or three. Or four.”

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Of course, all of this is barring injury and knowing the Jets draft history and recent misfortune, it’s hard to get too optimistic about a player’s future. That being said, Maye is off to a fantastic start.

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