A picture is starting to get hinted at among journalists that the Jets basically panicked by picking Quinton Coples with the 16th pick of the draft. That he wasn’t their favorite guy, that he was just who the Jets got stuck with.
Here’s two stories that are starting to cause a stir in in conjunction with each other…
Let’s look at it another way, shall we?
You Don’t Panic at 16 — The Jets had have days, no months, to set up their board. They knew their order and at the 16th pick, you let the board dictate. After the draft Clinksclaes told Jeane Coakley on SNY that they liked “three players” with 16 … which makes perfect sense when you consider that both Ryan Tannehill & Bruce Irvin were total wildcards in getting drafted before the Jets. Tannehill was getting #8 traction, but many expected him as a mid-to-late first. Irvin was a marginal first rounder by many analysts. Having both those players drafted before the Jets bubbled up the two extra players that the Jets expected to already be gone by the sixteenth pick … we hear at least one of them was DeCastro. It gave the Jets some choices that they were not expecting at 16 … which lead to thoughts of trading back.
Trading Back =/= Hate – Most anyone who understands even the most basic principles of regression analysis can see that trading back five-ish spots from 16 would have been the best move for the Jets. It doesn’t mean they hated the players who were there at 16, it just means that they felt like they could get a comparably valued player further down the draft. The full array of the four of five (assuming you count Irvin, per Seattle’s story) top players they liked at either DE or OLB were all still available at their pick, so the options are take the best who is left, or take the second or third best who is left five picks later, while getting another second or third rounder for the trouble … I know what I would have done … and it’s probably the same thing that Tannenbaum tried to do.
Seattle Needs Validation – Here’s the clincher. This smells too much like hack journalism and a little research actually proves it out. Until the Jets tell the public that yes, in fact they did really want Bruce Irvin, there’s no proof of Seattle’s yarn … tales are told long after the draft ends, just like they are leading up to the draft for less than altruistic purposes. For all we know, Seattle is trying to make themselves look better by validating their terribly valued reach pick by making it look like the next team really wanted Irvin too. Pasquarelli’s story is interesting, but it’s apocryphal at best and most likely a Seattle PR sales job at worst. Add in the fact that Pasquarelli was the one who broke the hiring of Seahawks GM John Schneider when he was back at ESPN … and it starts to get a little too convenient.
Even If It Was True – Now let’s assume that the story about the Jets and Irvin is true. Now what? Well .. we wait to see how Irvin progresses in the pros to see if their assessment was valid and we applaud the Jets for not taking Jones (#21) Perry (#28) or Upshaw (#35) with the 16th pick … since the value obviously didn’t support that at the 16th pick.
Just to be clear, just because something makes the news doesn’t make it true, and it certainly doesn’t mean it’s gotten there in the best interests of the fans … rather … it’s probably in the best interests of whoever is telling the reporter the story.