Draft Landscape Is Clearing: Options Are Opening

Feb 27, 2012; Indianapolis, IN, USA; South Carolina defensive lineman Melvin Ingram runs the 40 yard dash during the NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-US PRESSWIRE

What do you know, Tebow isn't the only thing that we can talk about today. By the time I have actually finished writing this, it will probably be around 35 days and one hour before the 2012 NFL draft gets started. It's where we get back to work fixing this defence. Mock drafts before free agency are a fun way to wind down some spare time, after free agency they are legitimately more usefull, although still educated guess work.......as much as McShay likes to think he has a crystal ball.

However there have been some interesting movers and shakers which could effect the way the draft board sits when it comes to the Jets selection. There are three moves that I can think of right now that really could effect the options the Jets have at #16 this year.

First off we have Buffalo signing Mario Williams. Before this signing, it was as close to a guarantee as you can get that they would be selecting a pass rusher. Coples if he was there, Ingram if not and Upshaw as the fallback. One of those three guys were coming off the board. Now I'm not saying that they won't select a pass rusher, but all of a sudden it's not a guarantee. They can experiment a little and maybe sure up that offensive line. It means there is a much higher chance of someone like Ingram falling to the Jets at #16.

Secoundly we have the Philadelphia Eagles trading for ILB DeMeco Ryans. Now this is a very similar situation to Buffalo, they desperately needed help inside and I think everyone was comfortable with the thought that Luke Kuechly was going to Philadelphia at #15. Now in a similar thought pattern to Buffalo, adding DeMeco doesn't automatically mean that the Eagles will look elsewhere and they could still select him. However they can now open up the board a little bit, and Kuechly is a guy that could drop to the Jets at #16

The final one doesn't really relate directly to the Jets. However as Manning went to Denver, Tebow came to New York, Flynn jetted off to Seattle and Henne headed for Jacksonville. Miami is left with Matt Moore and David Garrard. ESPN draft insiders have theorised that this could cause them to reach for someone like Ryan Tannehill in the first round. I think that's unlikely and a very big reach. However if that did happen, it means that they won't be suring up that offensive line. Which could mean that a stud RT like Riley Reiff falls to the Jets at #16.

I have to admit that if we came away from the draft with either Ingram, Kuechly or Reiff as our first round selection. I would be over the moon. Prior to free agency I wouldn't have believed that any of these guys would be available. There are 100 more scenarios that can play out now the free agency dust starts to settle. However it just shows how the landscape could possibly change and how the Jets may have far more options at #16 than first thought.

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