NFL Draft’s Justifiable Jets: Dion Jordan

With the 2013 NFL Draft less than a month away, TJB will offer some daily insight on players in this year’s draft class.  Here is one is a series of profiles of players who could be on the board when it’s time for the Jets to make a selection.

dion-jordanDION JORDAN
Position: Defensive End / Outside Linebacker
School: Oregon
Height: 6’6″ Weight: 248 pounds

Achievements:
2011 and 2012 All PAC-12 First Team Defender

Where the Jets could get him: Round 1, Jordan is likely to be a top ten pick and might well be gone by the time the Jets get to their ninth pick.

Explaining his game: Dion Jordan is known to be one of the most versatile defensive linemen in the 2013 Draft. Beyond his excellent size and frame, he has shown excellent athleticism and fluid hips in and out of transitions that allowed him to be used as a pass rusher, run stuffer and coverage defender during this time with Oregon.  Jordan was a top performer at the Combine in his group for 40 yard dash (4.60 seconds), broad jump (122.0 inches) and 20 yard shuttle (4.35 seconds) proving that his combination of size and speed are rare indeed.

To truly be an edge setter in the NFL, strength and conditioning coaches might want him to add some weight, but his 6’6″ frame will allow him to do so.  In college he tended to play to his athleticism more than his brute strength, but his dedication on a play by play basis isn’t questioned.

There aren’t many players who are able to drop in coverage at his size.  Jordan has the natural abilities to zone cover the flat, roam behind the linebackers and even cover a receiver in the slot. Jordan is able to rush the passer from two or three point stances, and his explosion at the snap and quick-twitch reactions allow him to beat defenders outside while his size and power allow him to create a push when placed inside.

Notes: Jordan might have ended his NCAA career on a bit of a down-note due to a torn labrum, a surgery he put off until after the Combine.  Analysts loved that Jordan participated in most of the drills while in Indianapolis, even when he didn’t have to.  His surgery and rehab will be done by the start of training camp and should not impact his rookie season.

Jordan offers a rare blend of ease at covering in space, length, and the ability to attack the pocket.  Many argye that his college stats aren’t representative of his skills because Jordan was often asked to cover receivers and tight ends lining up in the slot. In the NFL, Jordan could any number of positions.  Jordan could play at the strongside linebacker spot in a 4-3 with the added ability to rush the passer, Jordan could play the defensive end spot in a 4-3, or Jordan could play as an outside linebacker in a 3-4.

We all know that with a 3-4 hybrid defense that spends lots of time in nickel packages, Rex Ryan craves versatility in his defenders and no one who can rush the passer in this draft class is more versatile than Dion Jordan.

Articles on Jordan:

Kenjon Barner and Dion Jordan starred at Oregon, but size matters in the NFL

Jarvis Jones vs. Dion Jordan: Best Pass Rusher in the Draft?

Chip Kelly: Dion Jordan is Special

Dion Jordan’s life-threatening injury nearly derailed a promising career

Video: A compilation of Dion Jordan’s highlights during his 2012 season as a Duck.