- Rich Cimini, ESPN Staff Writer
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This is the third in a series highlighting players who could be selected by the Jets with the ninth overall pick in the April 25 draft:
Player: Chance Warmack, G, Alabama
Height/weight: 6-foot-2, 317 pounds
Scouts, Inc. ranking: 8
Draft projection: Seventh to 18th
Scouting report: Warmack is widely regarded as the best guard in the draft, an area of need for the Jets, but it would be an against-the-grain pick, that's for sure. Guard simply isn't a high-value position. Only four guards have been selected in the first round of the last three drafts. The last time a guard went in the top 10 was 1997, when the Saints chose Chris Naeole 10th overall. That said, Warmack was dominant as a three-year starter at left guard. NFL Network analyst Mike Mayock called him the best overall talent in the draft. He's a punishing run blocker with very good overall athleticism, although he raised some eyebrows by running the 40 in only 5.49 seconds at the scouting combine. "He tested awful, but he plays really good," one scout told me. Plug him in at left guard, and you don't worry about the position for at least eight to 10 years.
Key stats: Warmack committed only two penalties in 805 offensive snaps last season, according to Scouts, Inc. He allowed 3.5 sacks in 315 pass attempts, which isn't great for an interior lineman.
Red flags: We're nit-picking here, but he's shorter than the top guard prospects in recent years. Otherwise, there are no concerns. He's a hard working, durable athlete, having started every game (40) over the last three seasons for one of the top programs in the country.
In his own words: "I like being physical and explosive. I like that word a lot -- 'explosive.' I consider myself to be very explosive. In terms of where I want to be, I want to be the definition of that word. ... It was like that in high school, just took it to another level in college after I learned a little bit about how to be more explosive with my steps."