While opinions can be split on draft day, first round picks can often tell you a lot about a team as an organization. While I approved of the Calvin Pryor pick at the time, it concerned me a bit for one reason: Rex Ryan rarely valued safeties highly in his schemes. There were signs of disconnect between the front office and the coaching staff and it's easy to believe that Rex Ryan didn't have much say in the selection. This led to Pryor playing out of position in his rookie year and struggling considerably with Rex apparently unable to adjust his scheme to a player he didn't know how to utilize properly. Even if Rex knew he was out of position, he really had no other option. Landry was hardly suited to the free safety role.
This does not appear to be the case with the Bowles/Maccagnan era. For better or for worse, Maccagnan and Bowles appear to be on the same page. Bowles likes to run a scheme that uses fast, rangy safeties with at least one light ILB/SS hybrid (not shocking considering his history as a player and the ever increasing importance of defending the pass in today's NFL.) Darron Lee perfectly fits that mold and can easily slip into the Deone Bucannon role while learning behind Erin Henderson. Last year, the Jets desperately needed depth at corner; another position Bowles places a premium on. Maccagnan signed 3 corners to big deals, including one of Bowles' former players in Antonio Cromartie.
Now I can't tell you if Lee will become a star or a bust. I will say that it does seem that although Maccagnan has final say on the Jets' selections, he is putting an effort into giving Bowles the tools he needs to succeed. Once again. For better or for worse, Maccagnan appears to be hitching his car to the Todd Bowles train. I think that Bowles has a bright future ahead of him as a head coach, even if he struggled at times in his debut season. I'm glad to see that the coaching staff and front office are still on the same page.