With the 2017 NFL Draft complete, grades are coming in. Silly though it might be to evaluate players before they even take the field, NFL analysts do it anyway. As always, Draft grades are stupid...unless they praise the Jets.
The Jets fixed their safety unit in this draft by picking Jamal Adams in the first round and Marcus Maye in the second round. That could spell the end for Calvin Pryor and Marcus Gilchrist in New York. Along with free agent Morris Claiborne, the Jets have put resources into the secondary. The Adams pick was great. I viewed him as a top-three player in the daft. For me, No. 39 was a little early for Maye.
After them, the Jets doubled up on wide receivers ArDarius Stewart and Chad Hansen. Stewart is a really good athlete and Hansen has reliable hands. Fifth-round tight end Jordan Leggett might get more targets than the both of them. He fits perfectly with new offensive coordinator John Morton, who likes to flex tight ends out to create mismatches.
Day 1 grade: A
Day 2 grade: B
Day 3 grade: C
Overall grade: B
The skinny: Jamal Adams is an excellent, hard-nosed stud who presents great leadership qualities. He was best player available early in the first, and they made the right call. The Jets apparently weren't happy with their safety group, as they picked up the ultra-talented Marcus Maye in the second round. The question is, did they need to pick another safety when the team has many other needs? Finding a starting receiver in ArDarius Stewart in the third round will be viewed as a good pick sooner than later.
Former Cal receiver Chad Hansen made amazing catches in 2016, but will he be physical enough against veteran NFL corners? That pick was probably a round early, especially with other needs still on the table. Selecting tight end Jordan Leggett in the fifth was a good move, even if he is more of a straight-line runner than elite in his agility. They finally addressed cornerback later on, but it was a bit late. Also, they didn't address the quarterback position or the offensive line.
They landed a gem in first-round LSU safety Jamal Adams, but why come back and take safety Marcus Maye in the second? There were other needs. They did get two receivers with their next two picks, and I really like Cal's Chad Hansen in the fourth. Sixth-round runner Elijah McGuire could be a steal in that spot. I expected more out of this class.
This was as confusing a draft class as any team put together this year, even more so because it started off so dang well with S Jamal Adams at No. 6—he can be a focal point of the Jets’ defense for years to come. Second-round safety Marcus Maye (No. 39) is a talented guy himself, and incumbent Marcus Gilchrist is coming off a knee injury. O.K., fine, two safeties. Time to hit the other needs, right? Well, yes, except the Jets didn’t really do so. They spent their next three picks on a pair of WRs (ArDarius Stewart at 79, Chad Hansen at 141) and a TE (Jordan Leggett, 150). They did not hit cornerback until picks 197 and 204 (Jeremy Clark and Derrick Jones, respectively); their only linebacker pick was Dylan Donahue (No. 181), a pass rusher transitioning from his role as a college DE. Oh, and no quarterback.