4 players the NY Jets should have drafted instead of Will McDonald
By Justin Fried
2. Calijah Kancey, DT, Pittsburgh
The Jets may have missed out on the top offensive tackles in this class, but they still had the opportunity to address a position of need with a highly-touted prospect at pick 15.
Pittsburgh defensive tackle Calijah Kancey was one of a number of prospects connected to the Jets in rumors leading up to the draft, and with good reason too. The 2022 Unanimous All-American filled a pretty sizable need for the Jets.
The team did go out and sign veteran Quinton Jefferson to a cheap one-year contract, but the losses of Sheldon Rankins and Nathan Shepherd hurt the depth of the Jets' interior defensive line.
The Jets could really use another defensive tackle to complete their rotation, and Kancey could have been that guy. At just 6-foot-1, 281 pounds, the undersized defensive tackle out of Pittsburgh drew obvious comparisons to Aaron Donald.
While the Donald narrative is a bit overblown, Kancey is still a phenomenal athlete with elite physical traits. He's an explosive interior disruptor with impressive lateral quickness and quick hands.
Kancey wouldn't be a perfect fit for a Jets' team that could really use more of a traditional 1-technique run-stuffer, but he would have made more sense than McDonald. At least there isn't a logjam at Kancey's position.
The Jets could still look to address the interior of their defensive line on Day 2 — Wisconsin's Keeanu Benton is a favorite of mine — after passing on the opportunity to do so on Thursday. Still, it's hard not to feel like Kancey would've made more sense than the player the Jets went with.