Grading the NY Jets' last 10 first-round draft picks
By Ryan Shafer
2022, 26th overall: Jermaine Johnson, DE, NY Jets
The Jets decided to move back into the first round for their third pick in the 2022 NFL Draft. With it, they selected Florida State edge rusher, Jermaine Johnson.
Johnson, already 23 years old when he was drafted, was viewed as a play-now type of guy. He had the strength, experience, and maturity to play at the next level right away.
Despite his older age, Johnson struggled to get even playing time in his first year. He played in 14 games his rookie year, starting none.
He totaled 2.5 sacks and 29 tackles, including a safety and three TFLs. Nonetheless, the coaching staff, using their defensive line rotation, found ways to get Johnson on the field in meaningful spots later in the year.
Johnson did flash his speed and ability in spots during the year. His biggest play was probably his chase-down sack of Josh Allen during a massive upset victory over the Buffalo Bills just before the bye week.
To increase his grade, Johnson needs to make more plays like this in year two and also find ways to play more consistently. If Johnson can develop, he does have the system to succeed.
Playing alongside Carl Lawson, Quinnen Williams, and John Franklin-Myers next year will afford plenty of one-on-one chances for Johnson to tally sacks and TFLs.