Thursday, April 3, 2014
Analyzing Kiper Grade A draft: Jets
By Rich Cimini
A team often can fill its biggest needs in free agency, creating more flexibility when it comes time for the draft. In other words, the team can draft the best available player (in theory) without having to reach to address a need.
You can't say that about the New York Jets. They signed five free agents from other teams, including two wide receivers and a cornerback, but their top needs remain the same -- wide receiver, tight end and cornerback. This illustrates an absolute lack of depth at those positions.
In Mel Kiper's Grade A mock draft , he addresses those weaknesses -- boom, boom, boom -- in the first three rounds. He selects wide receiver Brandin Cooks (first round), tight end Jace Amaro (second) and cornerback Loucheiz Purifoy (third). I think the Jets would be thrilled if it fell this way.
Despite the additions of Eric Decker and Jacoby Ford, the Jets still need a speed receiver -- and Cooks is the fastest in the draft. There are some concerns about his size (5-foot-9¾, 189 pounds), but he is bigger than Tavon Austin and the Jets loved him in last year's draft.
Amaro was the most prolific tight end in the country, although there are some questions about whether his ridiculous numbers are a product of Texas Tech's pass-happy system. Still, he would be a good value at that point in the second round.
Purifoy is an interesting prospect. Scouts say he has the man-to-man cover skills to thrive in a Rex Ryan defense, but he has some off-the-field issues, including a marijuana arrest. They most definitely need to integrate a young corner into the program because free-agent pickup Dimitri Patterson isn't the long-term answer.