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If Kirk Cousins is signed, who should the Jets draft?

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - DECEMBER 31: Kirk Cousins #8 of the Washington Redskins throws a pass during warmups for the NFL game against the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium on December 31, 2017 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Ed Mulholland/Getty Images)
EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - DECEMBER 31: Kirk Cousins #8 of the Washington Redskins throws a pass during warmups for the NFL game against the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium on December 31, 2017 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Ed Mulholland/Getty Images)
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The football world was shocked at the out-of-nowhere trade between the Kansas City Chiefs and Washington Redskins involving quarterback Alex Smith. If the New York Jets land Kirk Cousins via free agency, who should they select with the No. 6 overall pick?

With news breaking earlier this week indicating that Alex Smith had been traded from the Kansas City Chiefs to the Washington Redskins, Kirk Cousins is now expected to hit free agency, and if he does, the New York Jets will be a frontrunner to sign him.

Heading into the 2018 offseason, the Jets are once again in need of a franchise quarterback, and with a large amount of money to spend, it’s possible that the team could lure in the 29-year-old signal caller.

And if the Jets do indeed sign Cousins, that would give the team more room to work with in the 2018 NFL Draft.

Last week, I discussed the fact that the Jets had to draft a QB if one wasn’t signed in free agency. Now, let’s flip the script and take a look at who the team should draft if they strike a deal with Cousins.

Due to the lack of depth the Jets have at the quarterback position, it’s certainly possible that the team could use its No. 6 pick on a QB even if Cousins ends up in the Green and White.

There are multiple quarterbacks expected to go in the top 10, and the Jets could elect to use their pick on a young player who could possibly be groomed and mentored by a veteran like Cousins, which may not be too bad of an idea.

If the team stays away from a QB in the draft, selecting an offensive lineman could also be a viable option.

The Jets’ offensive line was lackluster at best in 2017, and the team will certainly need to address this position in the offseason. Not all experts have an o-lineman being selected in the top 10, but if the Jets are serious about rebuilding their offense, they could use their pick on a player like Notre Dame’s Quenton Nelson or Texas’ Connor Williams, both of whom would provide the Jets with upgrades. Also, Oklahoma’s Orlando Brown would be a great selection thanks to everything he brings to the table.

Now looking at the defensive side of the ball, the Jets currently have a plethora of young, talented players and the future appears to be bright for the unit, although improvements can still be made.

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An edge rusher is certainly needed and the Jets should look to surround defensive lineman Leonard Williams with some more talent given the fact that Muhammad Wilkerson has likely played his last game for New York. If NC State’s Bradley Chubb were to fall to No. 6, which I’m not sure he will, he would be a fantastic addition to the Jets.

Also, Alabama’s Minkah Fitzpatrick could be available when the clock turns to the Jets. In the 2017 NFL Draft, the Jets selected safeties Jamal Adams and Marcus Maye, who both made immediate impacts. Adding a talented cornerback like Fitzpatrick would only bolster the Jets’ secondary.

Finally, although it may be unlikely, there’s a slight chance that Penn State’s Saquon Barkley could be on the board at No. 6. If the Jets have already signed a legitimate QB, I’d love to see them add an elite level talent like Barkley, as he’d only provide more spark to the team’s offense.

Must Read: Jets 2018 NFL Mock Draft: Gang Green selects Josh Rosen

Obviously, the Jets will have a plethora of options when draft day rolls around. What’s even more obvious is that signing a QB in free agency would give them more freedom with their first-round pick.

How they handle things when they’re on the clock, however, will remain to be seen.

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