Surveying the Jets skill positions

Brian Bassett, TheJetsBlog.com

With a lot of focus outside the walls of Florham Park on the Jets skill positions our friends over at TOTJ did an awesome job of breaking down the team’s current starters at the team’s skill positions that you should definitely read.  Here’s our boiled down version with an eye on the upcoming draft.
NFL: AFC Championship-New England Patriots at Denver Broncos

Eric Decker was signed in March to invigorate the Jets offense

WIDE RECEIVER
Relevant Depth Chart: Eric Decker, Jeremy Kerley, David Nelson, Stephen Hill
Analysis: By simply adding Decker, this group is much improved.  Decker provides a big target who is physical and can get behind a defense from time to time.  Jeremy Kerley is typecast as a slot player, but in truth he could be a competent #2 when pressed into service … he’s played better than Santonio Holmes going on three years now.  David Nelson was found money last season and provided the team a big target for Geno Smith in the middle and in the red zone.
Areas of Improvement: With three big targets (Decker, Nelson, Hill) in-house along with the shifty Jeremy Kerley, the team could consider adding any number of receivers, but their greatest need is for a “speed with hands” type.  Since bringing on Marty Mornhinweg last year as the team’s offensive coordinator, there’s been a lot of activity around small and speedy deep threats.  Tavon Austin last year along with interest in DeSean Jackson, Emmanuel Sanders and Andrew Hawkins.  In the first round this year that player is Brandin Cooks.  He’s athletic and bigger than Austin was, but maybe with slightly less speed.  Either way, he would be able to grab a few deep passes a game and soften the defense for the running and shorter passing game.

TIGHT END
Relevant Depth Chart: Jeff Cumberland, Zach Sudfield
Analysis: Jeff Cumberland can be a competent receiver and has gotten substantially better as a blocker.  He’s come a long way since he was a rookie in 2010 – but is there much more to come?  The team scooped up Sudfield last season and he saw more time as the season wore on.  Regardless, this is not enough skill and depth at a position that has become increasingly important in the last five years in the NFL.
Areas of Improvement:  It all depends on when/if the Jets invest in tight end, this draft doesn’t have a glut of talented tight ends.  If they are to do so in the third or fourth round, CJ Fiedorwicz might be the right move due to his skill as a blocker.  If the Jets are going to invest earlier in a tight end during the draft process then he better have some hands.  Eric Ebron is great but he’s not much of a blocker.  Austin Sefarian-Jenkins has the size and can be productive as a pass catcher and promise as a blocker and could be available when the Jets pick in the second round.

NFL: New York Jets at Tennessee Titans

The Jets added playmaker Chris Johnson this week

RUNNING BACK
Relevant Depth Chart: Chris Johnson, Chris Ivory, Bilal Powell, Mike Goodson, Alex Green
Analysis: Adding Chris Johnson this week made a major upgrade for the Jets at the running back position.  Johnson is still under 30 and has suffered behind one of the worst offensive lines in the league for years.  He’s been extremely durable and still has some of that patented playmaking, but it is fair to say that he’s not the same dynamic player he was as a rookie, but he’s still better than anyone else on the team in New York.  Chris Ivory will be the pounder in this setup and will likely get early down and short yardage work.  The rest of the depth will come into question based on what the Jets do in the draft.
Areas of Improvement:  The Jets might be looking for a smaller scat back type to work into this group.  In that case, Charles Sims, Jerrick McKinnon and Terrance West might be targets for the Jets among this running back class.

QUARTERBACK
Relevant Depth Chart: Geno Smith, Mike Vick, Matt Simms
Analysis: Signing Vick has solidified the depth of the team and it seems most likely that those two will be the only players to start at the position for the Jets this season.
Areas of Improvement: Unless something unforeseen happens, I don’t expect the Jets will make an investment in the quarterback position that could have impact this season.




152 comments
a57se
a57se

Former Bucs GM and current ESPN analyst Mark Dominik said Louisville QB Teddy Bridgewater's stock started to fall long before his lackluster pro day.

"There were things you saw on tape when you watched him," said Dominik, who did so as an employed general manager. "Something that scouts internally, we talked about it in Tampa with Teddy Bridgewater last year. Is he really the premiere quarterback? I like the young man, I think he's a quality individual, he's got character and leadership and those things. But this is a quarterback, and you're judged by what quarterback you draft, and I think Teddy Bridgewater might not have all the pieces you're looking for." Dominik isn't the only former NFL boss down on the Cardinals' star. Former Browns' GM Phil Savage said on Thursday: "I think the media has Teddy Bridgewater in the top 10, but around league circles he's more like a late first, early second-round pick." 

Looks like Teddy B. isn't the Cat's Meow as some would tell us......

bradysucks
bradysucks

Mike Mayock's WR rankings

1 Sammy Watkins, Clemson 6-1 211

2 Mike Evans, Texas A&M 6-5 231

3 Marqise Lee, USC 6-0 192

4 Brandin Cooks, Oregon State 5-10 189

t5 Kelvin Benjamin, Florida State 6-5 240

t5 Jarvis Landry, LSU 5-11 205

t5 Odell Beckham, LSU

SackDance99
SackDance99

If Ebron is available at 18, he could be too good to pass up.  The WCO really takes off with a good pass-catching TE paired with a good pass-catching RB and Ebron is a match up nightmare.  I understand that Cook, Lee and Beckham (and others) are solid WR candidates, but they're backside receiving threats if they get on the field at all.  Ebron is going to be strong side, play side and just hell on the defense with CJ2K, Decker and, perhaps, Vick.


A clue for who may start at QB might be revealed by the choice of Ebron, too.  Vick plays fast and fast players that hit seams are best for him.  Vick gets in trouble when he drops back and gets impatient.  Geno, on the other hand, is pretty poised sitting back there and a backside deep threat is someone that he could exploit more than a pass-catching TE because he'd likely prefer a better blocker to give him the extra time.


I like the idea of Cooks and ASJ.  But, Ebron and a 2nd round WR might work as well and, fwiw, DeSean was a 2nd round WR.  Also, with all those picks, Idzik could trade up to the late 1st round or early 2nd and maybe get Cooks, Beckham or Lee, too (or, go the other way and get Ebron).

DrJonathanReefer
DrJonathanReefer

any takers? Yes Fanspeak


R1 WR MARQISE LEE

R2 ILB C.J. MOSLEY

R3 TE AUSTIN SEFERIAN-JENKINS

R4 WR DONTE MONCRIEF

R4 RB CHARLES SIMS

R4 QB JIMMY GAROPPOLO

R5 CB PHILLIP GAINES

SackDance99
SackDance99

@bradysucks Lee is the best scheme fit for the Jets' offense, while Cooks might be more of a need pick.  Close call.

bradysucks
bradysucks

Round 1 Ebron TE

Round 2 Jarvis Landry WR

Round 3 Keith McGill CB

Round 4 Donte Moncrief WR

Round 4 Jeremy Hill RB

Round 4 Chris Watt G

This would be an interesting draft for the Jets if they decide to pick Ebron in round 1

Hazard2012
Hazard2012

@SackDance99  


Ebron at 18 would be tempting...but not sure you don't get almost the same bang for the buck with ASJ in the second, leaving you to take one of the top WR's (or whomever) first.   


Ebron is one of those players who could fall that would be very hard to pass up...no matter how convincing the rationale to do so.    

jma020
jma020

@DrJonathanReefer  Love it overall.  But would prefer ODB or Cooks in the first.  With some O-line in the 3rd or 4th.  But Mosely in the 2nd makes it for me.

Pat d
Pat d

Reefer

I like that draft

DrJonathanReefer
DrJonathanReefer

just if somebody as wondering.


The Pats first 5 rounds.


R1 DT LOUIS NIX

R2 S CRAIG LOSTON

R3 G CYRIL RICHARDSON

R4 TE ARTHUR LYNCH

R5 DT GEORGE UKO



harold
harold

@DrJonathanReefer

The players we got were pretty good.  But this mock is not likely Mosley, ASJ, and Moncrief have almost no chance of being there at those spots. 

cosmicwy
cosmicwy

@marc55 @bradysucks  THIS.   i have just recently joined the beckham hype train.   i want that guy on our team.  he's the #3 WR on the board.

bradysucks
bradysucks

I'd be thrilled with either of them

cosmicwy
cosmicwy

@bradysucks  i think jarvis landry in the 2nd is a huge reach.  ebron in the 1st is also a wasted draft pick.  

SackDance99
SackDance99

@bradysucks Not sure if Moncrief lasts to the 4th round, but your mock shows that WR depth is great, while TE gets dicey.

SackDance99
SackDance99

@Hazard2012 @SackDance99 True, but those projected 2nd round and later WRs could be as good as the 1st round WRs.  Donte Moncrief's tape is great, as is Landry's.  Robinson and Matthews aren't slouches either.  But, Ebron is like Sammy Watkins to the WRs, he's clearly a cut above...how much of a cut is this issue.

Hazard2012
Hazard2012

@DrJonathanReefer  


Nice mock, above, btw...and anything's possible in this draft.  Feel like a broken record, but the shifting evaluations, lack of true separation at many positions and likelihood of lots of trades could make this draft more fluid and unpredictable than any in recent memory. 


Re the Pats...I'd bet the mortgage they're taking one of the top TE's somewhere in the first two rounds...to replace Hernandez and...maybe Gronk in view of his injuries.   That might force them to take the TE first.

DrJonathanReefer
DrJonathanReefer

@jetlife @DrJonathanReefer  

lol

funny you say that. This is the rest of the draft.


R6 RB DE'ANTHONY THOMAS

R6 ILB ANDREW JACKSON

R6 S DEZ SOUTHWARD

R6 OT MATT PATCHAN

R7 P KIRBY VAN DER KAMP



i always end up with Patchan for some reason.

bradysucks
bradysucks

@a57se @SackDance99 @bradysucks  


I tend to agree that drafting a TE in round 1 is a bad idea.....The Jets have had terrible results whenever they've done so in the past.....Johnny Mitchell, Kyle Brady.....and even Dustin  Keller was a dissapointment....


Having said this, Ebron is a good player who can develop into a dominant NFL player with a coordinator like Morninweg in a west coast offense....


If the Jets took TE Eric Ebron in round 1 and then grabbed WR Jarvis Landry in round 2 they'd be in very good shape with 10  more picks still left....

a57se
a57se

@SackDance99 @bradysucks  

UNC TE Eric Ebron drops too many passes to be considered a top 15 prospect by CBS Sports' Rob Rang.

Rang ranks him as the class' No. 20 overall player. "Ebron possesses a jaw-dropping combination of size and athleticism that has earned comparisons to 49ers star Vernon Davis," Rang wrote. "Like Davis, however, Ebron struggles with consistency, relying too much on his athleticism rather than dedicating himself to learning the finer techniques of the position. Some team may very well gamble earlier on Ebron's incredible upside than my ranking indicates, but he drops too many easy passes for a spot in the top 15 for me." Ebron (6-foot-3, 250 pounds) possesses top-end playing speed along with great lateral movement, but his inconsistent hands definitely need work. If it's a matter of concentration, team/coaching fit is going to be of paramount importance. 

I think Ebron would be a waste with Beckham or one of the other top WR prospects on the board...could take some time before he can contribute.

I am glad the Jets haven't shown much interest in him.

They have shown a lot of interest in Amaro and Fiedorowicz though.


Hazard2012
Hazard2012

@SackDance99 @bradysucks  


In all likelihood, though you're losing Watkins, Evans, Cooks, Beckham and Lee in the first round...so you better like one of the second tier guys to be an immediate impact player.   


I'd take Moncrief in an instant.   I think he's got #1 potential.     

SackDance99
SackDance99

@bradysucks Ebron would, IMO, project as more important to the WCO and would be productive immediately.  So, I'd rather go 2nd round for WR.  I wouldn't get upset if either Lee or Cooks are taken, especially Cooks who is an exciting player to watch.

D
D

@bradysucks I dont think Fiedoriwicz lasts to the 4th.  TE is more than ever a valuable position due to the Rats success with Gronk and Hernandcuffs,   If he is there in the 4th he will be gone early in that round.  Everyone is looking for that dual threat, blocking and catching.

I like Fiedrorowicz a lot but we have no clue how this will pan out, very exciting

bradysucks
bradysucks

I think you can get a productive TE in round 4 (CJ Fiedorwicz). The guy is 6 foot 5 plus and can block better than Ebron. A guy like Fiedorwicz has size similar to Heath Miller and Jason Whitten. Fiedorwicz can also catch the ball.

Iowa has produced some good TE's over the years

The argument could be made that a dominant blocking TE who helps open up running lanes for Chris Johnson is more useful than Ebron who isn't known for his blocking....Fiedorwicz can BOTH catch and block and he won't cost the Jets a 1st round pick

Hazard2012
Hazard2012

@Pat d  


We both know that...in the real world...but the simulator didn't take him so I did...at 49.  



a57se
a57se

@Pat d  

Any of the top WR's are better than Ebron as well as several of the defensive players and Offensive Linemen.......


Pat d
Pat d

Beckham won't be there at 49

Pat d
Pat d

If you can get a healthy Lee at 18 you will get a WR that is as good as Watkins. That is a bargain that would surpass Ebron at 18.

Hazard2012
Hazard2012

@SackDance99 @Hazard2012  


Agree.   One of my Fanspeak mocks last night actually started out:


18 - TE Ebron

49 - WR Beckham

80 - OLB Lawrence

104 - CB Desir

115 - ILB Smallwood

137- RB Seastrunk


Don't we wish ODB would still be there in the 2nd! 

Hazard2012
Hazard2012

@JETS_ @Hazard2012 @DrJonathanReefer  


Yes, but only if its Gilbert or Dennard.  I posted one Fanspeak mock I did that took Gilbert first and it turned out pretty good imo. 


18 - CB Justin Gilbert

49 - OLB Demarcus Lawrence

80 - TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins

104 - WR Donte Moncrief

115 - G Dakota Dozier

137 - RB Lache Seastrunk

154 - S Telvin Smith

195 - QB Tom Savage

209 - CB Louchiez Purifoy

210 - S Dez Southward

213 - DT Deandre Coleman

233 - WR TJ Jones



D
D

@Hazard2012 @JETS_@DrJonathanReeferI know what you mean.  Im excited for our DL.  This draft is going to be great, especially the first 4 rounds. 


What if we go CB at 18, would you be ok with that?

Hazard2012
Hazard2012

@JETS_ @Hazard2012 @DrJonathanReefer  


No need to get the OLB first...Attaochu or Demarcus Lawrence are my picks for replacing Pace, and can both be got in the second...but maybe not the third.   


Add either one to our front line, developing under Rex and being mentored by Pace and this could be the second coming of the Sack Exchange.   Seriously.  

D
D

@DrJonathanReefer @Hazard2012@JETS_and the messed up part about that was they were VERY good at running the ball.  The Rats will also draft DL or DT early too.  Espcially with an coming of injured/aging Wilfork. 


Hazard2012
Hazard2012

@JETS_ @DrJonathanReefer @Hazard2012  


The team around Brady is more in decline than he is.   Tom Terrific is aging, but can still get it done---providing he's not eating turf.   


That's why I'd like to add a stud edge rusher out of this draft, even at the expense of something else.   

DrJonathanReefer
DrJonathanReefer

@Hazard2012 @DrJonathanReefer  


IMO its peyton's last year, don't see him going much longer. If they won last year I think he retires.


I'm very excited about the future. If Idzik nails this draft we will have a load of great young talent.

Hazard2012
Hazard2012

@DrJonathanReefer @Hazard2012  


Exactly.  They've got to go 'all-in' just like Denver with Peyton.   Window's closing on these two, and pretty fast. 


I'd personally like to hasten their demise along a bit by nailing this draft and giving them some competition.  

D
D

@DrJonathanReefer @Hazard2012 brady is for sure on the decline, still elite but you could see it last year he was slowing down.

I really hope we end up with ODB, IMO i think he is the most explosive WR out off all the names out there.  

harold
harold

@DrJonathanReefer @bradysucks

Now I don't like the picks at all...lol 

Cooks each time no matter how boring.