The NY Jets addressed the offensive side of the ball with their first four picks in the 2021 NFL Draft. But they added their third straight defensive player with the selection of Pittsburgh cornerback Jason Pinnock in the fifth round.
Pinnock was selected with the 176th overall pick and will look to follow in the footsteps of another former Pittsburgh cornerback who the Jets drafted a long time ago. Of course, no one is expecting him to follow the same career path as Darrelle Revis.
But Pinnock is a good athlete with prototypical size for the cornerback position. Standing at 6-foot, 204 pounds, Pinnock is long and athletic and projects well as a Cover 3 cornerback in the NFL.
This marks the second consecutive cornerback the Jets have drafted following Duke’s Michael Carter II earlier in the round. And along with Auburn safety/linebacker Jamien Sherwood, the third straight defensive player the Jets have selected.
Jason Pinnock is a high-upside pick for the NY Jets
Pinnock was a productive player in college racking up eight pass deflections in each of his final three years in college, despite not assuming a full-time starting role until his senior season.
The Connecticut native actually played both wide receiver and cornerback in high school and his ball skills clearly carried over. On top of his pass deflections, Pinnock also amassed six interceptions over the past three years at Pittsburgh, leading his team with three in 2020.
Pinnock is a typical late-round project at the cornerback position. He has the size and athleticism you look for in an outside cornerback, but his lack of awareness and inconsistent tape caused him to fall in the draft.
But at just 21-years-old, there’s still plenty of room to grow.
Pinnock will join a very young Jets cornerback room featuring the likes of Bryce Hall, Blessuan Austin, Javelin Guidry, and fellow fifth-round pick Michael Carter II.
The Jets could look to sign a veteran such as someone like Richard Sherman or Steven Nelson given the lack of experience at the position.
Either way, Pinnock provides the Jets with a high-upside, athletic cornerback with good size who could develop into a future starter. He also figures to play a key role on special teams.
A fine addition on Day 3 of the draft.