Our 2017 in review series continues today as we recognize the top rookies on the team this season.
Bronze medal: Elijah McGuire
He might not have been Alvin Kamara, but getting close to 500 yards from scrimmage from a late round pick is pretty good, particularly as part of a three man rotation. While he only averaged 3.6 yards per carry, shaky blocking might have been part of the issue. He showed ability with some eye popping cuts and receiving skills. How big of a role McGuire can handle going forward is an open question, but he showed tools that suggest he could have a solid NFL career.
Silver medal: Marcus Maye
Maye was a steady presence in the back of the Jets defense for most of the year mainly handling the important deep middle spot. Only a late season slump dropped him to the silver. His last month was not good as he found himself caught in the wrong spot in coverage and overrunning plays too frequently. It is possible he simply ran out of gas at the end of the NFL season, which runs approximately a month longer than the college campaign.
Gold medal: Jamal Adams
I have seen takes on Adams’ season that are all over the map. I have seen people say Adams looked like a future star. I have seen people say he was a big disappointment. I fall somewhere in the middle. There were clear ups and downs. Part of it came from how difficult his assignments typically were. He played really good football for sustained stretches, some of which flew under the radar because the broadcast camera on games does not highlight the important things safeties do away from the ball. I think for a first year this was fine, but Adams will not justify the high selection the Jets used unless he improves going forward. The good news is he ended his season on a high note with a strong final month aside from a few hiccups Week 16 against the Chargers.