In part two of our four-part series, we will be looking specifically at the New York Jets’ offense and seeing which offensive positions they should upgrade at in the draft. Last year, the Jets finished 9-7 and came one win short of playing in the Super Bowl.
Quarterback: Last year, first round pick Mark Sanchez started fast, slowed down, but picked it up in time for a postseason run. Look for him to mature even more this year. This is however, the last year in backup Kellen Clemens’ contract. If he doesn’t want to come back as a reserve, the Jets will need to spend a pick on QB if a veteran isn’t picked up.
Highest round they should draft one? 5th round or later. This player will be nothing more than a backup to Sanchez.
Running Back: Running back is one position the Jets may seem set at, but I think they would be wise to get another. Second-year player Shonn Greene is poised to have a breakout year, and signing LT as a backup will certainly help. My issue is with Leon Washington as the third back. How well will he recover from his broken leg? Only time will tell, but a third down back may be necessary.
Highest round they should draft one? 3rd or 4th round. Maybe a Joe McKnight-type out of Southern Cal to give the Jets a little more explosion out of the backfield.
Wide Reciever: This may be the Jets’ biggest draft need as a team. Braylon Edwards continues to show flashes of brilliance, but can he do it consistently? Also, he signed a one-year deal with the team, so he may leave The Big Apple after this year. Also, Jericho Cotchery isn’t too impressive. Third receiver Brad Smith is in the final year of his contract, and his best position is wildcat quarterback, which is an expendable position.
Highest round they should draft one? 1st or 2nd round. Any wide receiver in this draft would greatly help out the young Mark Sanchez and give him someone to work with for years to come.
Tight End: Not really a need at all for the Jets. Dustin Keller has proved that he can be a big time tight end in this league. Someone to aid with blocking on the edge always helps, but I don’t see the Jets using a high pick here.
Highest round they should draft one? 5th round or later. There are other more significant positions to focus on in this draft.
Offensive Tackle: Again, not a huge need, but support wouldn’t help. D’Brickashaw Ferguson was a Pro-Bowler last year at LT, and Damien Woody did all that was asked of him. The issue with him is his age (32), so a replacement may eventually be in need once his contract expires in 2012.
Highest round they should draft one? 4th through 6th round. As I’ve stressed over and over, it is never too early to pick a tackle.
Interior Offensive Line: Really no urgent needs here. Alan Faneca and Nick Mangold were Pro-Bowlers last year, and Brandon Moore is a good complement to them.
Highest round they should draft one? 5th round or later. This was last year’s best offensive line. They don’t need much help.
What do you think of these predictions? What wide out would you like to see on Gang Green next year? Plan to catch the wrap-up of the New York Giants draft needs on Easter Sunday.
Photo Credit: NY Daily News