New York Jets: 2014 NFL Round 5 Rapid Reaction


FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- The pick: Jeremiah George, linebacker, Iowa State

My take: This was a classic "need" pick -- and a bit of a reach in the fifth round. The Jets are perilously thin at inside linebacker, so they opted for the undersized, but highly productive George (5-11, 231 pounds). He's a run-and-hit player who will contribute immediately on special teams, which need an infusion of young blood. In terms of his future on defense, George's size could prevent him from being an every-down player in Rex Ryan's scheme. He and Nick Bellore should be the primary backups behind Demario Davis and David Harris, who enters the final year of his contract.

You can't quibble about George's college résumé, though. He led the Big 12 last season with 133 tackles, including 12 tackles for loss and 3.5 sacks. He has excellent instincts and good range. His intangibles are off the charts; he was a team captain and has an upbeat personality. The Jets like players from Iowa State; their director of college scouting, Jeff Bauer, is an alum.

Gambling Jets: Say this for the Jets: They're not afraid to take chances on players who fall short of prototypical size. They did it in the fourth round, selecting smurf receiver Jalen Saunders (5-9) in the fourth round and grabbing the diminutive George in the fifth. Chances are, they'll never become starting players in the NFL, but it shows the Jets are drafting with an emphasis on special teams. Their coverage units suffered last season because it lacked top athletes. They have a new special teams coordinator, Thomas McGaughey, and they're giving him some new toys to incorporate into his master plan.

Jets take Dakota Dozier in 4th

May, 10, 2014
May 10

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- The pick: Dakota Dozier, guard, Furman.

My take: Dozier becomes the first "big" in this year's draft class. He was a four-year starter at left tackle, but he projects to guard in the NFL. He has guard measurements -- 6-3½, 313 pounds. If you recall, the Jets made a similar selection last year, taking tackle Brian Winters in the third round and converting him to guard. It was an epic struggle, underscoring that position switches aren't always seamless transitions.

Dozier was moved to guard for the East-West Shrine Game, and he reportedly had no problems at all. He's known for his ability to get to the second level, an important attribute in the Jets' blocking scheme. He produced 133 key blocks/knockdowns and 17 touchdown-resulting blocks, according to the Furman stats. Dozier's nickname is "Bull." What else did you expect? He was chosen 137th overall, with a compensatory pick.

Stockpiling the big fellas: Dozier is a depth/developmental pick, just as Oday Aboushi and William Campbell were last season. If the scouting department is right about these players, the Jets will have good, young depth on the offensive line. Right guard Willie Colon, 31, is on a one-year contract, so there probably will be an opening at his position in 2015, perhaps sooner. The jury is still out on Winters at left guard, so that young depth could become critical for the Jets. Chances are, Dozier will start out at left guard, playing behind Winters.