Giving out grades immediately after the Draft is a silly venture. You cannot really grade a Draft for four to five years. That has not stopped many pundits from trying. Here is a look at some of the immediate grades the Jets got after the 2016 NFL Draft. As always, remember that draft grades are stupid unless they praise the Jets.
With first-round pick Darron Lee added a much-needed element of speed to the defense. He can do a lot of things for head coach Todd Bowles. Picking Christian Hackenberg at No. 51 overall was bizarre. He's a developmental quarterback with tools. There's a lot of work that has to be done with him. If it works, he can be good. If it doesn't, it's a high pick that was wasted. Jenkins is a heady player who just gets the job done. He may not be a superstar, but he's dependable. Juston Burris is a lanky cornerback who fits the system. It was a surprise to see the Jets wait so long to take someone on offense. Ryan Clady is no long a sure thing as a starting left tackle. Charone Peake was surprisingly available in the seventh round. He has tools and size that can be developed.
Top needs: OLB, OL, CB, QB
It's a symptom of the draft process that the same person could be excited about an FCS quarterback with barely a year and a half of starting experience drafted No. 2 overall -- and for a boatload of picks! -- and criticize the Jets for taking Christian Hackenberg at a reasonable value slot in Round 2. The reality is we just don't know what either will become, but while I had Connor Cook rated higher, I don't think the value range is too bad for Hackenberg if they feel he can be a starter. I think Hackenberg can get there, but he needs a lot of work with Chan Gailey. I think it's an awful idea to throw him out there early.
Elsewhere, I like this draft. The Jets got better at linebacker with Darron Lee, my No. 15 overall player taken at 20. Third-rounder Jordan Jenkins out-produced No. 9 overall pick Leonard Floyd at Georgia. Juston Burris is a good press corner who can contribute in this system. Brandon Shell is a talented project at tackle. Charon Peake is a guy I thought could go much earlier because of his physical skills, but if he's healthy he has a chance to stick. The story of this draft might very well end up about the success or failure of Hackenberg, but in Round 2 it's a decent bet to make.
New York Jets
Best pick: For me, it was taking Penn State quarterback Christian Hackenberg in the second round. Contrary to most, I think he will become a quality starting quarterback.
Questionable move: It was taking Hackenberg. I get it. It's a questionable move, but no guts, no glory.
Third-day gem: Offensive lineman Brandon Shell. He was a four-year starter at South Carolina. Doing that in a good conference matters. He's a big, physical kid who might have to move to right tackle.
Analysis: If Hackenberg develops into a starting quarterback, which the Jets think he can, this will be a great draft. If he doesn't, it's a flop. It's that simple. Getting linebacker Darron Lee in the first was a nice choice.
Addressed their need at linebacker in a big (and impressive) way with Darron Lee and Jordan Jenkins, two excellent newcomers, but second-round pick Christian Hackenberg is as divisive of a quarterback prospect as you ever will see.
Darron Lee (Jets First Round Pick)
I give our draft grade an A++. #JetUp— Darron Lee (@DLeeMG8) May 1, 2016