If you read my last post, you already know that I'm attempting to turn over a new leaf and spread some optimism on this site. For too long have I (and many others) looked on the dark side of every Jets-related event, it's time to brighten things up and keep hope alive. Yes, that pessimism has been warranted the past decade or so, but what's the point in watching or following if you're just going to make yourself miserable thinking about each and every way the Jets can mess it all up, right?
Pick 3: Quinnen Williams - Man, is this guy a beast? Just an absolute wrecking ball on the line. He's just 21 years old with one year of starting experience and he already shows the technique and polish of an NFL veteran. The sky really is the limit for him, and he's going into a defense led by the man who put Aaron Donald's career on it's current trajectory. All of us have been waiting for tha edge rushing sack artist, but this kid could have that same impact from the interior. I think you'll see him notch 6-8 sacks this year, but in his prime should be consistently hitting 12-14 as he develops and learns the nuances of the position.
Pick 68: Jachai Polite - So you're mad they didnt take an EDGE at 3? Well they got a first round caliber EDGE all the way down at pick 68. Polite's pre-draft was the only reason he wasn't a round 1 pick, his tape would have you thinking he'd go in the top 15. Now are the red flags raised by his combine a concern? Sure. But consider this- He's also a 21 year old kid, who at the time was trying to take care of his mother. Maybe he was a bit under prepared, stressed from the family issues, overwhelmed by the intensity of the combine- It's possible the poor performance was a fluke. The team brought him in on a Top 30 visit, I'm sure if he showed up the same way, they wouldn't have taken him. Give the kid some time, then judge to see what he is. The potential pay off here is huge, he could be a consistent double-digit sack guy off the edge, which the Jets have missed for years.
Pick 92: Chuma Edoga - Macc finally took an OL before Day 3, and he happens to be a guy with potential to start one day at LT. He profiles very similarly to Jets current starter, Kelvin Beachum, who's been more than solid in his time here. Even if he never becomes the start LT you want, I could see him kicking inside and being a very good, athletic Guard. He'll probably spend his rookie year on the bench as a primary backup and wing tackle, but year two, especially if Beacum is gone, he could see starting action. Best case scenario is that he balls out in training camp under the fantastic new Jets OL Coach, Frank Pollack, and the coaching staff feels comfortable enough starting him at LT and kicking Kelvin inside over Winters.
Pick 121: Trevon Wesco - Boy do I love this pick. Wesco was one of my draft crushes all year long. The guy is versatile, able to play TE, H-Back, and FB, and is just a bear on the field. Thick and strong, he's a punishing blocker, which LeVeon Bell will appreciate, and is a terror to tackle. This guy DRAGS full grown men who try to tackle him. He's slow, yes, but I'll take yards anyway I can get them. Herndon & Wesco are a fantastic 1-2 combo (and yes, it does kinda sound like the title of a 1980s buddy-cop sit com).
Pick 157: Blake Cashman - I'll admit it, to my dismay, I wasn't able to see every live this year as I was in Atlantic City for Day 3 of the draft. When I checked my phone to see that Blake Cashman was a Jet, I was stunned. I could not believe this guy was on the board. I was shocked when I didn't see him go Day 2, but I figured he'd go early in the 4th. Blake Cashman at 157 is fantastic value, as a guy I saw as a top 75 player. The guy had a great senior season and seemed to place himself on the map with a super combine performance. When you watch him on tape, he easily the hardest worker on the field. He absolutely never quits and plays with reckless abandon. I expect him to be a special teams star early on in his career and the heir to Avery Williamson as a starting ILB when his contract expires in two years. Linebacker wasn't a need in this draft, but when this quality of player is available in Round 5, you take him. This also helps solidify depth in the likely event that Darron Lee is traded this summer.
Pick 196: Blessaun Austin - Look, yes, the medical concerns with Austin are really real. It's a risk. He may never be the same guy he was in his stellar sophomore year (which had him on some analysts radars as CB1 heading into the year). But you know what? In round 6... it's okay to take that risk on a player. Austin's Sophomore tape, and the few games he played as a Junior showed starting caliber traits that would have made him a fringe 1st rounder had he stayed healthy. It's a shame he only made it through one game as a senior, but the Jets could be the ones to reap the benefits of the player's personal misfortune. He probably won't play much or at all this year, and that's alright. If you want to give him the best chance possible to succeed. Put him on the PUP list this year, give him the full year to rehab and build up muscle and durability in the leg, then see what he's got in 2020. If he can regain even close to his Sophomore form, you've got a capable CB2 at a huge discount.
UDFA: Greg Dortch - I have no proof to back this up, but if the team had kept their 7th round pick, I think Dortch would have been the pick. He fits exactly what Gase likes to do on offense. Fast and agile, he's schematically an ideal backup to Jamison Crowder, and I also expect him to beat out Quadree Henderson at Punt Returner.
UDFA: Tyler Jones - I was pretty surprised when I saw Jones amongst the undrafted, I had him as an early Day 3 pick. I think he makes the team as a backup Guard with developmental upside. In a zone scheme, he has middle-of-the-road starter potential, which for a UDFA, is pretty darn good,
UDFA: Kyle Phillips - Another higher profile UDFA I thought would go in Day 3, Phillips is high effort pass rusher who should provide some good depth behind the starters with the upside to be a rotational piece one day.