NY Jets trade up for Deebo Samuel clone to make Aaron Rodgers very happy

Did the Jets just draft Deebo 2.0?
Malachi Corley
Malachi Corley / Alberto Silva Fernandez/ El Paso Times /

The NY Jets went into Day 2 of the 2024 NFL Draft with an obvious need at wide receiver, and they addressed it in a big way adding a player who many believe could be the next Deebo Samuel.

The Jets traded up seven spots with the Carolina Panthers at the top of the third round to select Western Kentucky wide receiver Malachi Corley, a player the team reportedly had as the fourth-best receiver in this year's class.

Corley has drawn comparisons to the aforementioned Samuel for his dynamic YAC ability and running back mentality that he plays with. At 5-foot-10, 207 pounds, Corley was a YAC machine in college who finished with more career catches than any player in Western Kentucky history.

Corley projects best as a gadget slot receiver at the NFL level with the potential to be a high-volume target in the short and intermediate passing game. That's exactly what the Jets were looking for.

Aaron Rodgers should be pleased with the NY Jets' selection of Malachi Corley

The Jets revamped Aaron Rodgers' skill group this offseason, signing former Los Angeles Chargers wide receiver Mike Williams. Corley now joins a wide receiver room featuring the likes of Garrett Wilson, Williams, and Allen Lazard.

He can immediately step in as the team's new starting slot receiver with the potential to be a Deebo Samuel-like player if he continues to develop his overall route tree.

The two-time first-team All-C-USA selection recorded a whopping 180 receptions for 2,277 yards and 22 touchdowns over his final two seasons at Western Kentucky, finishing his career top-three in program history in all three categories.

Corley is a dangerous weapon after the catch not necessarily because he's the fastest player in this class, although his acceleration is impressive. Instead, Corley opts to run through would-be tacklers, forcing a ridiculous 55 missed tackles over the last two seasons.

The Jets should be able to find ways to utilize Corley's YAC ability on slants, screens, jet sweeps, etc. while he continues to diversify his route tree.

Robert Saleh was able to see the development of Deebo Samuel firsthand while he was in San Francisco. He's certainly hoping Malachi Corley can continue on that same trajectory.