The 2019 NFL draft is quickly approaching, so it’s time for an updated projection for all of the New York Jets’ picks.
The calendar has turned to April, and much like kids searching for hidden eggs, in just a few short weeks all 32 NFL teams will be doing their best to unearth some treasures in the 2019 NFL draft.
NFL mock drafts are swirling throughout the media ranks, and it’s time to take a new stab at projecting all of this year’s picks for the New York Jets.
After struggling through some growing pains with a rookie quarterback in 2018, the Jets currently sit at the No. 3 spot in this year’s draft, this time without having to trade up.
Last year’s move up the board to land Sam Darnold has left the Jets without their second-round pick in the 2019 draft, which could entice the team to entertain offers to move back themselves this time around. But if they’re forced to stick and pick at No. 3, here’s how all seven rounds of this year’s draft could shake out for the Jets:
Next: 1st Round
After missing out on Anthony Barr in free agency, the Jets are still in search of a versatile defender who can make a big impact off the edge. Allen’s production exploded in 2018, but his complete skill set has been on display throughout his impressive career against SEC competition.
Allen spent a good bit of his time off the ball prior to 2018, but last season, the Wildcats finally unleashed his full potential as a pass rusher.
Assuming Ohio State’s Nick Bosa is off the board, if the Jets can’t move back from this pick, Allen is the best fit.
Next: 3rd Round
Adding Kelechi Osemele via trade should fortify one spot along the interior, but the rest of the Jets’ offensive line still needs an upgrade. Kelvin Beachum turns 30 this year, and while Brandon Shell has more tread on his tires at 27 years old, neither give Sam Darnold the kind of presence and protection a young franchise passer needs to reach his full potential.
Cajuste is a player that should come off the board in the early second round, but an unfortunate injury could cause his stock to tumble a bit. The former Mountaineer recently had surgery to repair an injured quad, but he’s expected to be fully cleared in a few months.
Though he comes with some risk due to his injury history, the Jets could luck out by landing a franchise left tackle at the top of the third round. If he stays healthy, he could end up being a huge steal if he lasts this long.
Next: 3rd Round
The addition of free agent Jamison Crowder gives Darnold the perfect slot target, but he could still use another outside playmaker with size and speed.
Hall still seems to be flying under the radar this draft season, despite backing up his impressive production with a strong performance at the NFL Scouting Combine back in February. Though a nagging groin injury limited his overall numbers last season, the 6-2, 201-pounder proved his big-play ability by averaging a ridiculous 23.5 yards per catch over the past two seasons. His solid combine performance included a 4.39-second 40-yard dash.
With a loaded receiver class, Hall could easily slip to the end of the third round, making him a bargain for the Jets at the pick they received from the New Orleans Saints in return for quarterback Teddy Bridgewater.
Next: 4th Round
Brian Poole is the perfect replacement for Buster Skrine in the slot, but his arrival still leaves the Jets needing an outside corner with size and length to play opposite Trumaine Johnson.
While many of this year’s second-tier corner prospects have gotten plenty of buzz and are expected to rise leading up to the draft, Jackson is a name that doesn’t seem to be getting his due. A popular preseason mock draft pick in the early rounds, Jackson seems to have been leapfrogged on the hype train.
If he indeed slides down the board, the Jets would be landing a big (6-1, 210 pounds), physical cover man with the instincts and ball skills to quickly develop into a quality starter.
Next: 6th Round
Again, the addition of Osemele upgrades one interior spot for the Jets’ offensive line, but there’s plenty more work to be done if Darnold and Le’Veon Bell are to reach their lofty potential.
Jonotthan Harrison made eight starts for the Jets last season, but he’s best suited for a backup role, where he versatility and experience at multiple spots is valuable. Thankfully, there’s a prospect in this draft who could be available in the later rounds, despite having all the physical and mental tools to be an immediate starter at center.
Though his lack of ideal size could cause teams to pass him over in the earlier rounds, Gaillard is a feisty, powerful blocker with the intelligence and leadership abilities every team wants in the anchor of their offensive line. It’s not often you can find instant starters in the late-round range, but Gaillard could be the rare exception.
Next: 7th Round
You can never have too many pass rushers, and the Jets should try to come away with more than one from this year’s draft class.
While Granderson’s numbers dipped considerably in 2018 (7.5 tackles for loss, three sacks), his 2017 film and production (16 tackles for loss, 9.5 sacks) should be enticing enough to warrant a late-round pick.
With his impressive frame (6-5, 254 pounds), decent athleticism and well-rounded skill set, Granderson could easily develop into an effective situational pass rusher at the next level.