NY Jets: Mock draft, full UDFA predictions ahead of NFL Draft
By Steven Blush
The NY Jets need help in a ton of areas so here is a full mock ahead of the NFL Draft that fits the vision of GM Joe Douglas.
NY Jets fans understand that nobody knows how the chips will fall during this week’s NFL Draft weekend—being broadcast live from Roger Goodell’s basement in Bronxville (really).
We do know that Gang Green needs significant upgrades at wide receiver, cornerback, edge rusher, and offensive tackles.
Don’t be surprised if GM Joe Douglas trades down 5-10 spots in the first round to accumulate more mid-round selections.
But one thing is for sure: the Green-and-White finally have a legitimate NFL personnel evaluator running the show. Based on the six previous disastrous drafts by John Idzik and Mike Maccagnan that depleted this roster, things can only get better.
With that being said here’s a full seven-round mock draft that addresses all of the team’s top needs and what we’d do during the undrafted free agency period.
CeeDee Lamb and Jerry Jeudy will be great NFL receivers and consistently rank 1-2. But Ruggs—lost in Bama’s Tua/Jalen Hurts transition, and stuck in Jeudy’s shadow—possesses that extra burst of speed necessary to excel in the modern pro game.
We know that the Jets must upgrade the tackle position, but unless Jedrick Wills or Tristan Wirfs remain on the board, they need to provide Sam Darnold with Tyreek Hill-level ammunition. Many NFL insiders say that Ruggs may be the better pro, while Jets insiders report Gang Green is eyeing him “very closely.”
The only draft former GM Mike Maccagnan got correct was drafting Jamal Adams and Marcus Maye back-to-back, to instantly upgrade a liability into an asset. The same thought process prevails here. Imagine a big, productive, familiar USC product for Darnold lining up on the other side from Ruggs, with Jamison Crowder in the slot. Such a move would also take considerable pressure off Breshad Perriman, Vyncint Smith, and Braxton Berrios, building an impressive unit.
Anae is a hard-nosed, old-school, high-energy, high-impact pass rusher. The only thing this big, bad Ute lacks is those off-the-charts NFL Combine workout numbers. NY Jets defensive coordinator Gregg Williams loves such meat-and-potatoes types and would provide excellent career mentorship. A big thank you to Leonard Williams and Big Blue for this one!
Most draft gurus rate a toss-up between Day 2 pro-grade cornerbacks Dantzler and Virginia’s Bryce Hall. Reports indicate that GM Douglas—as part of his continuing CB unit rebuild—has expressed keen interest in the Mississippi State product. Doubters point out his pedestrian athleticism and tackling deficiencies, but no one can discount his fiery spirit and NFL starting skill set. Free-agent signee Pierre Desir would be a great role model for this potential building block.
An intelligent, powerful road-grading run-blocker who could step in and compete with Chuma Edoga (or George Fant) at right tackle. There is concern about Niang, a three-year starter for the Horned Frogs, possibly having difficulty in pass protection against elite edge rushers.
But on tape, he contained the likes of Nick Bosa and Chase Young. Plus, there are red flags regarding his late-season hip surgery. But expect the NYJ GM, a former college O-lineman, to relate to such a hard-working mid-round value pick.
Despite last season’s rather pedestrian offense, Adam Gase has a reputation for implementing multi-faceted offensive tools. If that’s the case, no player in this draft better fits the bill. Gibson can run wide or up the middle and can electrify in swing passes or lined up in the slot. He would instantly become the franchise’s deadliest kick returner, displaying an explosive skill set unseen in the Meadowlands since Leon Washington.
The Lachlan Edwards era is drawing to a close. At least the Aussie sixth-rounder out of Sam Houston State wasn’t flat-out awful, like almost every other pick of the Maccagnan error. The NY Jets need to improve in terms of field position drastically; they can immediately change course by importing another Lone Star State-schooled punter—far and above the best college booter in college football last season. Mann may also be the best kicker in this draft, in terms of kickoffs.
Frantz is a four-year Big-12 starter, an Academic All-American, an instinctual pass-protector, and an absolute mauler. He failed to deliver eye-popping NFL Combine stats, and more than one evaluator has expressed concern over his relatively-short arms.
Frantz will likely pan out as a more productive professional than 2016 Jets first-round washout Darron Lee, for whom this pick originated.
Now we move on to the chaos of undrafted free agency! Here is our full predictions for the green and white following the 2020 NFL Draft!
Next: UDFA predictions!
The #Jets Zone w/ @BoyGreen25 feat former #NFL GM @mlombardiNFL:– Takes us inside an #NFLDraft war room on draft day.– Biggest Q w/ Tua Tagovailoa isn't what you think it is.– Does a virtual draft put more pressure on GMs in the league?#TakeFlighthttps://t.co/YIDsknhRB4
— The Jets Zone (@TheJets_Zone) April 15, 2020
UDFAs Josh Love, QB, San Jose State He started just one season and was his school’s first-ever Mountain West Offensive Player of the Year. Love may not have an elite arm, but he knows what to do with the damn ball.
Kendall Coleman, Edge, Syracuse With Alton Robinson, he formed the most formidable edge-rushing bookends in the college game. But Coleman’s stock is rising; to get him may require jumping back into the seventh round.
Luther Kirk, S, Illinois State By the end of Kirk’s senior year, no team dared throw near the Redbirds two-time captain. His versatility at both cornerback and strong safety would excel in Gregg Williams’ elaborate schemes.
Carter O’Donnell, OT, Alberta The top baller out of Western Canada impressed at the Shrine Bowl and should be an in-demand Priority UDFA for any organization. Expect him to start somewhere in the NFL within three years.
Danny Pinter, G, Ball State The TE-turned-OT will shift inside, so as the Cardinals’ interior lineman is a real work in progress. But many league insiders agree that Pinter has an NFL future.
Adrian Killins, Jr., RB, Central Florida One of the most productive college backs last season has gone under the radar. The gnat-sized Tarik Cohen-style slasher Killins could be killin’ it in green-and-white.
Mason Kinsey, WR, Berry An undersized D-III standout who blossomed under the training tutelage of former Broncos receiver Tavarres King. The Shrine Bowl standout’s got a little Wayne Chrebet in him.
Joey Magnifico, TE, Memphis Besides having the best name in the draft, Magnifico is a classic practice squad project capable of developing into a solid backup tight-end. But first, he needs a crash-course in blocking.
Derrek Tuszka, Edge, North Dakota State The 2019 Missouri Valley Football Conference Defensive player of the year, is a lean and mean, and deceptively athletic edge-rusher. One cannot ignore Tuszka’s 29.5 sacks in three FCS seasons.
Isiah Swann, CB, Dartmouth This big, physical shutdown corner dominated the Ivy League for four seasons and held his own against pro-grade receivers at the Shrine BowSwann could be the small-college breakout star the Jets thought they had in Trumaine Johnson.