Overall, Joe Douglas’ 1st draft went as well as any Jets fan could hope by bringing in several impact players like Becton and Mims, while also making several great trades. Rounds 3 and 4 were uneventful with the 4 players selected barely seeing the field, however Douglas redeemed himself by finding studs late like Bryce Hall and Braden Mann.
Round 1, Pick 11: Mekhi Becton, OT, Lousiville Grade: A
Becton immediately established himself as one of the best OTs in football dominating opposing defenders and even shutting down Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram. While his pass protection dropped off a little to end the season, his run blocking was dominant throwing several defenders to the ground. The only reason that he isn’t an A+ is because he missed 1/3 of possible snaps with injuries, outside of that Becton has been sensational. At 6’-7" 365 Becton can be a perennial all pro on the Jets left side for years to come. Great way to start the draft
Round 2, Pick 59: Denzel Mims, WR, Baylor Grade: A
After missing time to a hamstring injury, Mims immediately became one the Jets best receivers as soon as he was on the field. After an elite combine, many expected Mims to go in the late 1st but Jets snatched him up at the end of the 2nd after trading back from 48 and acquiring the Seahawks 59th and 101st pick. Mims’ play was better than his production as he was consistently missed after beating opposing corners, including stars Denzel Ward, Stephon Gilmore and Xavien Howard. Hopefully with a full season under his belt and improved QB play next year. Mims can establish himself as a top receiver.
Round 3, Pick 68: Ashtyn Davis, FS, California Grade: B-
Davis was a mixed bag as a rookie displaying elite speed and good coverage ability but still needs to improve his reads and instincts. There were several times where a bad read or pursuit angle let up a big play. However, Davis also played well with tight coverage and a high motor contesting most passes in his direction. With Maye and McDougald as free agents, Davis has the opportunity to establish himself in year 2.
Round 3, Pick 79: Jabari Zuniga, OLB, Florida Grade: D-
While Zuniga offered intriguing athleticism and filled a need, he disappointed on the field making almost no impact and garnering a dismal 33.0 PFF grade. Coming off a short but productive year in college, he offered a potential steal in the 3rd but with no training camp and then an injury his rookie year was a let down. Hopefully Zuniga can improve in his 2nd season with a year to prepare.
Round 4, Pick 120: La’Mical Perine, RB, Florida Grade: D
Perine was drafted as a power back with a little bit of wiggle and receiving ability to his game to serve as a backup Leveon before stepping into a bigger role in 2021. Instead Bell was cut and Perine became a part of the starting rotation. He flashed early in the season but was then sidelined with an ankle injury. Overall, it was an unimpressive rookie year as Perine was outperformed by waiver wire pickups Josh Adams and Ty Johnson. He showed some potential early on and I’m hoping he comes back strong this year
Round 4, Pick 125: James Morgan, QB, Florida International Grade: D-
The Jets traded the 101st pick to the Patriots for the 125th, 128th and a 2021 6th round pick which was an amazing trade by Joe Douglas. However the pick itself was a bit of a head scratcher with Flacco already at backup and more pressing needs but Morgan had some late round hype to justify it. However Morgan failed to crack the roster or displace Flacco and spent the season on the practice squad. With Flacco a free agent and Darnold’s future in question he’ll have a better chance of making it on the field this year.
Round 4, Pick 128: Cameron Clarke, OG, UNC Charlotte Grade: D
A small school OT, Clarke dominated at Charlotte with his biggest game coming against Clemson where he shined. I loved this pick he was also team captain and MVP but Clarke failed to make the active roster despite terrible play at guard this year. I’m hoping he gets an opportunity to play this year but I’m definitely concerned after a disappointing rookie year.
Round 5, Pick 158: Bryce Hall, CB, Virginia Grade: A+
The steal of the Jets draft was Bryce Hall who I originally wanted in the 3rd round. After a dominant 2019 campaign which put him in the 1st round conversation he returned to school where an ankle injury caused him slide to the 5th. After missing the 1st half of the year on IR Hall returned in week 9 and immediately took over the starting job playing every snap to finish the year. I can’t wait to see more of him in 2021, I really believe he’ll make a huge jump into a true #1 corner.
Round 6, Pick 191: Braden Mann, P, Texas A&M Grade: B+
It’s tough to find contributors in the 6th round but Joe Douglas found in in Braden Mann. Mann immediately became the Jets starting punter and his big leg helped flip field position several times through the year. His play fell off a bit as the year with several shanks however I’m sure he can rebound. Not many punters can kick it as far or as willing to make a tackle.
Draft Grade: B+
Joe Douglas hit on several major needs with the Jets adding building blocks like Becton, Mims and Hall who immediately made an impact on the field and I believe will be pro-bowlers in the nar future. Meanwhile Davis, Mann, Perine and Clarke can be valuable pieces that will hopefully develop into starters. The reason this draft isn’t an A is because of the misses in rounds 3 and 4 where several impact players were still available. However those rounds also were one of the most encouraging parts of the draft as Joe Douglas was able to turn the 48th pick into the 59th, 125th, 129th and a 2021 6th rounder.