A lot of people seem to vehemently object to the idea of the Jets moving up in the first round of the 2011 NFL Draft. I understand this thought. In the abstract, the team might be getting one player instead of getting three players. A more concrete example, though, shows a different story.
The Jets traded up in the first round of the 2007 NFL Draft to nab Darrelle Revis. They gave up a first, a second, and a fifth round pick to Carolina. The Panthers used those picks to take Jon Beason, Ryan Kalil, and Tim Shaw. It is difficult to say the Panthers made out poorly. Beason and Kalil both turned into really good players. I would still rather have Revis than Beason, Kalil, and Shaw together.
Like Mike Tannenbaum says, there are few impact players in the league. Getting one is an extremely valuable thing. I know it is tempting to say the team should hold onto a fifth round pick that might turn into a Pro Bowler. Many more turn into journeymen like Shaw who bounce from team to team than turn into stars, though.
It would be nice if the Jets could fill all of their holes with quality players. That, however, might not be possible even if they hold onto all of their picks or trade down. As it is, even though some feel the team desperately needs an infusion of young talent in a number of spots, they will be bringing back most of a defense that was third in the league and a team that has been one of the last four standing two straight years. Pretty much no team in the league has zero holes. Even as the Patriots were dominating during the regular season, there were weaknesses as clear as day, and the Pats stockpile picks as high as any team.
There are not a ton of guys projected to be around at 30 who get me excited. Maybe somebody will unexpectedly fall. If the Jets feel they can add an impact player, that one guy might put the team closer to the Super Bowl than three average guys. I understand that in a vacuum, it makes sense to want as many lottery tickets as possible. There are many instances, though, where refusing to trade up essentially means choosing Tim Shaw over Darrelle Revis. Considering the team's track record of success moving up for Revis, David Harris, Mark Sanchez, and Shonn Greene, I trust Mike Tannenbaum if he feels it is in the team's best interest to trade up in the first round.