The New York Jets and General Manager John Idzik had 12 picks to work with during the NFL Draft. Instead of forcing the issue, Idzik let the draft come to him. There were no trades made, and the Jets took 12 players. Lets take a closer look and grade each pick.
Round 1 18th Overall: Calvin Pryor, S, Louisville
The safety position was extremely overlooked as a major need for the Jets. Calvin Pryor fits the team like a glove. He’ll add an intimidating presence that has been severely lacking in the secondary since LaRon Landry left, and he makes plays all over the field. Look for Pryor to change the attitude of the Jets defense.
Round 2: Jace Amaro, TE, Texas Tech
The Jets knew they could not enter the 2014 season with Jeff Cumberland as the number 1 tight end on the roster, so John Idzik drafted Jace Amaro out of Texas Tech in the 2nd round. At 6’5, 265, and a former high school basketball star, Amaro fills a massive need. There were other wide receivers the Jets could have taken, but tight end may have been the biggest weakness of the team heading into the draft. With Amaro, the Jets have someone who can be an offensive game breaker.
Round 3: Dexter McDougle, CB, Maryland
Dexter McDougle seems like a major reach for a 3rd round pick, and to be honest, this selection feels similar to when the Jets drafted Sheldon Richardson at 13 last year. No one really knew much about him, and he went out and won Defensive Rookie of the Year. So before we are so quick to judge and say this was a horrendous pick, lets give the guy a shot. As for his skills, he projects as a nickel corner in the NFL who can flat-out fly.
Round 4: Jalen Saunders, WR, Oklahoma
It took the Jets until the 4th round to address the wide receiver position, and when they finally did, Jalen Saunders was the guy. Saunders is small: 5’9 165. Despite that, he’s viewed as one of the most physical receivers in the draft. He has electric speed, and great hands. The Jets took him a little earlier than he was projected, but hopefully Saunders can provide some much-needed big play ability to the offense.
Round 4: Shaq Evans, WR, UCLA
The Jets drafted a receiver with the last name Evans, it just wasn’t the high profile guy everyone wanted. Instead, they got Shaq Evans out of UCLA who provides the Jets with a reliable, moving the chains, gritty type of wide receiver. He’s not going to be a home-run player by any means, but he’s going to be a nice receiver at the NFL level.
Round 4: Dakota Dozier, OT, Furman
Dakota Dozier out of Furman adds some nice offensive line depth for the Jets. He’s not going to see the field much this season, giving him some time to develop. If all goes well, Dozier could be a starting guard a few years down the road.
Round 5: Jeremiah George, LB, Iowa St.
Much like the safety position, special teams was an area the Jets needed to improve in. Jeremiah George will help. He’s too small to play linebacker in the NFL, so his ceilings not all that high, but there’s no doubt he can contribute for the Jets right away.
Round 6: Brandon Dixon, CB, Northwest Missouri State
Brandon Dixon has the size and speed to make it in the NFL as a corner, but is too raw at this stage. He’s a player who will likely spend a few years on the practice squad, and if he develops, can be a productive corner in the NFL.
Round 6: Quincy Enunwa, WR, Nebraska
Quincy Enunwa was the 3rd receiver the Jets took in the 2014 NFL Draft. Enunwa is 6’2, 225, has 4.4 speed, and can go up and make a catch. There’s going to be fierce competition throughout training camp at the receiver position, which should be good for everyone.
Round 6: IK Enemkpali, DE, Louisiana Tech
At best, IK Enemkpali translates to a 3rd down edge rusher in the NFL. He made first team Conference USA in his senior season, and was one of 2 defensive lineman to record multiple interceptions. Still, his ceiling isn’t too high in the NFL.
Round 6: Taj Boyd, QB, Clemson
Rex Ryan really outdid himself by taking Taj Boyd. Rex’s son goes to Clemson, so he’s had the chance to see Boyd play several times in person. But let’s be real, there was absolutely no need to draft a quarterback in this draft unless in was Zach Mettenberger. The Jets would have been better off using the Boyd pick to trade down and get better quality players. Boyd will be lucky to crack the roster.
Round 7: Trevor Reilly, OLB, Utah
The Jets got a guy with a 4th-5th round grade in the 7th round. Extremely versatile, great work ethic, leader, sure tackler, and wore a captain “C” while at Utah. Reilly is a player that can contribute at the next level rather quickly.
Overall: The New York Jets addressed all their needs in the draft. They got a safety that can change the attitude of the secondary, a new major threat at tight end, made it so there will be fierce competition at the wide receiver spot, and added some corner-back and linebacker depth.
With all that said, the Jets earn a B…for now.