Corey Griffin, TheJetsBlog.com
Bassett’s out searching for tacos (hair of the dog!) so he’s charged me with writing up a Junk Drawer … here goes.
Jumping for Geno? – Adam Schefter reported this afternoon the Jets are interested in trading up in order to take a quarterback. Schefter mentioned the Jets considered drafting Geno Smith at No. 13, which would lead one to think the Jets are enamored with the value of getting a quarterback they had a first-round grade at a second-round price. However, there’s also talk that Marty Mornhiweg is a huge Ryan Nassib fan, so maybe he’s the target. I’d bet the Jets at least have to get ahead of the Eagles at 35 regardless and might need to go all the way up to 33 to take Geno. There’s also the question of how much the Jets would have to give up to get up, with my guess being a third-round pick, although maybe the Jets will move a 2014 pick instead of losing this year’s selection.
Worth it – Assuming the compensation is easy to stomach, the question then becomes, “Is Geno Smith a good draft pick?” That’s a difficult question to answer. There’s some scouts that love his competitiveness and his arm strength, but there’s a reason Smith fell into the second round. Smith lost his mechanics in the second half of last season and slumped badly. I’ve heard him described as having “slow eyes,” which is to say he is a beat slow in reading a play or a developing defense. In college, and with weapons like Tavon Austin and Stedman Bailey, you can get away with that. In the NFL, that tends to lead to interceptions. If that sounds familiar, it’s because Jets fans have seen this very thing with Mark Sanchez the past two seasons. The one thing I don’t have a concern about is Geno’s attitude. The WVU coaches love him and his attitude is generally regarded as one of his best attributes. He’s not the guy that sulks. He’s the guy that sees dropping into the second round as a chance to prove 31 teams wrong.
What about next year – If the Jets do trade up for Geno or Nassib or, gulp, Matt Barkley, there’s sure to be some very upset Jets fans who wanted to wait until the potentially loaded 2014 draft to find a quarterback of the future. Names like Teddy Bridgewater, Aaron Murray, Tahj Boyd and Johnny Manziel are likely to be littered among first-round forecasts as soon as post-mortem is done on this year’s selections. But Jets fans would be wise to know it doesn’t really matter if they draft a quarterback tonight, at least as far as next season’s concerned — whoever the Jets draft tonight might just end up being Jimmy Clausen. The Panthers drafted Clausen, who fell into the second round, in 2010 only to take Cam Newton the next year. Of course, if Geno or Nassib are Clausen, then Idzik better find his Cam Newton and soon.
End around – If the Jets don’t move up and take a QB, then what’s the plan? The Jets are clearly interested in adding an offensive guard and a tight. Kentucky’s Larry Warford is the best guard on the board and might have been a late first-round pick in a different year. Brian said on the podcast this morning he’s heard the Jets might target Cincinnati tight end Travis Kelce, which makes sense since we’re expecting a run on tight ends in the second round. If the Jets want to add one of the top guys from this class (Kelce, Ertz, McDonald, Escobar), they might have to strike before their third-round pick (No. 72). There’s also the running back option, with Giovani Bernard and Eddie Lacy still available. A possible dark horse? FIU safety John Cyprien, a hard hitter who has seen his draft stock rise and could give the Jets’ secondary a fearsome look.