NY Jets land franchise LT in 7-round 2023 NFL Mock Draft
Round 2, 43rd Overall, NY Jets: Rashee Rice, WR, SMU
This year's wide receiver class might not have the same level of top-tier talent as in previous years, but that second tier is stacked. SMU's Rashee Rice is one of the most notable names expected to be targeted early on Day 2.
Rice blends an ideal size/speed combination with outstanding ball skills and positional versatility. At 6-foot-2, 203 pounds, Rice reminds me a ton of CeeDee Lamb or even Chris Godwin. He's just a true alpha out there.
The Jets are expected to move on from Corey Davis this offseason and could do so with Braxton Berrios as well. Wide receiver is an underrated need for the team this offseason, and Rice would certainly solve that issue.
If Rice could clean up some of the concentration drops he struggled with from time to time at SMU, he has superstar potential. If he's there at pick 43, I'm running to the podium.
Round 3, 74th Overall, NY Jets: Jordan Battle, S, Alabama
This is another excellent value pick for the Jets. Aside from quarterback (and maybe the offensive line), there might not be a position of greater need for the Jets this offseason than safety.
Many expected Alabama's Jordan Battle to enter the NFL last year, but he surprisingly returned for his senior season. With more than 50 games of experience in Alabama's defense under his belt, Battle is widely considered to be a rock-solid Day 2 pick in this year's draft.
Battle is a physical, high-IQ player who projects best as a strong safety in the NFL. He has good size and length that he combines with fluid hip movement and athleticism. Honestly, he reminds me a lot of a younger, bigger Jordan Whitehead.
Battle makes a lot more sense for the Jets if they move on from Whitehead this offseason as they would fill similar roles. If that is the case, Battle might be my favorite replacement for Whitehead.