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New York Jets: Building Strengths

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Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

When we talk about the Draft, people frequently talk about needs. Certainly the Draft can help to fix areas of weakness. The Draft isn't only about filling needs, however. It also presents a chance to transform the team by adding a strength that forces the issue on opponents. I'm going to pick one potential area for the Jets on offense and one on defense where the addition of a big-time player could have a ripple effect.

Offense: Running Back

While it s possible the Jets will add one of the top two quarterbacks, the odds do not seem to be in Gang Green's favor. This team is likely going to have to get by with either Geno Smith or Ryan Fitzpatrick. In either case, the Jets are going to have to help their quarterback a lot. The Jets have decent players in the backfield, but adding a top back from this year's class has a chance to change the offense. Back in 2009 and 2010, the Jets were able to prop up an unspectacular passing game because of the success they had running the ball. They had arguably the best offensive line in football at the time. To run the ball that effectively, a team either needs a great back or a great offensive line. In this year's class, the back might be easier to get.

Defense: Edge Rusher

I have heard a lot about the Jets' sack totals recently. It is true that the Jets could get by on what they have because of their strong defensive line, adding an explosive edge rusher could have an outsized effect on the defense. It isn't just about upgrading over Quinton Coples' and Calvin Pace's production. If the Jets add an edge rusher other teams have to gameplan to stop, Sheldon Richardson and Muhammad Wilkerson get less attention inside. Offenses have to leave extra blockers in, meaning the only receiving options on a given play might be covered by Revis and Cromartie.