Saturday, May 10, 2014
Jets explored trade-up for Marqise Lee
By Rich Cimini
FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- Is John Idzik ever going to make a trade? Well, he tried Friday night, attempting to move up in the second round.
The New York Jets' general manager acknowledged that he placed calls, but he declined to reveal the object of his desire. A league source confirmed it was wide receiver Marqise Lee. The NFL Network reported they tried to move up 11 spots to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (No. 38 overall). The Bucs balked, perhaps thinking the Jets were interested in the player they ended up selecting, tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins. Lee didn't last much longer; he was picked 39th by the Jacksonville Jaguars.
The Jets stayed put and chose tight end Jace Amaro at 49, meaning they will go into the third day of the draft with a league-high nine selections. It seems rather pointless to have a 12-player draft, considering it's unlikely they'd all make the roster. Idzik should use the extra picks as bargaining chips, packaging them to land his top targets. Idzik hinted that he could do some dealing on the final day.
"It's nice going in with ammunition," he said. "That way, we can maneauver."
Another year, another shoulder: For the second straight year, the Jets drafted a cornerback coming off shoulder surgery. Last year is was Dee Milliner, who didn't have his operation until March and missed the entire offseason. This time, they used a third-round pick on Dex McDougle, who underwent his surgery last September. He was injured in Maryland's third game.
McDougle said "everything is healed up," expressing optimism that he'll be available for all offseason activities. He's been cleared by doctors, according to Idzik, who didn't provide any specifics other than that. There are questions about McDougle's durability. In 2010, he needed surgery to repair a broken collarbone, the result of a scooter accident.
"He's an aggressive player," Idzik said. "He forced the run with vigor. That's the type of player we like."
Rex Ryan called McDougle "a complete corner," saying he can play inside and outside. "He's aggressive," Ryan said. "He’ll challenge you at the line of scrimmage. He’s got good ball skills."
McDougle skipped the scouting combine because he still wasn't healthy, but he enjoyed a good pro day, running the 40 in 4.43 seconds and registering a 37-inch vertical jump.
Concerned? Not Rex: Ryan displayed a little of his old bravado when asked if he's concerned about the current cornerback situation.
"We’re going to play great defense here, that’s what we do," he said. "I’m absolutely confident that we’ll do it."
That great defense surrendered nearly 4,000 passing yards last season, the most by the franchise since 1986.
Fake plastic: Idzik said the team thoroughly investigated an incident that occurred in March, 2012, Amaro's second year at Texas Tech. He and a teammate were arrested for felony credit-card fraud for allegedly running up a $100 bar tab on a teammate's card. The charges were eventually dropped.
"We don’t wipe anything away," Idzik said. "We not only talk about it, but we drill down on those things. Again, it’s very important to learn the type of person that you’re bringing into the organization. We take that background research very seriously."