How will the NY Jets spend their two top-10 picks in the 2022 draft? In a somewhat controversial selection, one mock has them reinforcing the secondary with the fourth overall pick.
There's no doubt that the Jets carry some of the most pressure in the league to draft well in 2022. Currently, New York has the coaching staff, a promising rookie quarterback, and a few core pieces, but this draft will define the team's future success — that much is certain.
And that's why extra caution should be paid to the Jets' top-10 picks, fourth and tenth overall, as the team has a plethora of options to choose from.
Pass-rusher and wide receiver are arguably two of the Jets' most desperate needs, but they could also use a defensive playmaker in the backfield. Is pulling the trigger this early on a cornerback in the 2022 draft worth it?
PFF's Sam Monson apparently thinks so. Monson has the Jets taking No. 1 corner prospect Ahmad Gardner with pick No. 4 despite New York not badly needing reinforcements at the position.
"Jets fans believe cornerback isn’t amongst the team’s biggest needs, but Gardner could change how the defense functions. He has great coverage skills and incredible length for the position, and those traits simply give opposing quarterbacks nowhere to put the football. "- Sam Monson
NY Jets take Sauce Gardner fourth overall at the expense of other needier positions in mock draft
Adding depth is always necessary, but New York shouldn't make a first-round investment at the position unless that player is an unbelievable, unicorn-type cornerback.
Gardner is good, but perhaps not that good.
A more sensible path may see the Jets take an available pass-rusher in PFF's mock (Jermaine Johnson, George Karlaftis) or even a wide receiver.
Monson does have Alabama's Jameson Williams going to the Jets at 10th overall, but if the Jets were to come away with first-rounders Gardner and Williams, we're not sure everyone would be on board with that.
There are those who believe otherwise, that taking Gardner with pick No. 4 is in fact an ingenious move, and they are nonetheless entitled to their opinions.
We just think Robert Saleh is better off finding cornerbacks in the later rounds who can still fit into his zone-based scheme.
With their the No. 4 overall pick, the Jets could do worse than Ahmad Gardner, but they can also do better.