Many of the draft gurus have stated that the JETS 2014 draft may have ben one of the best in the team’s history rivaling the 2000 draft when they took Chad Pennington, Shaun Ellis, John Abraham and Laveranues Coles.
This year the team had several holes they needed to fill. They also had a few other other positions where they needed to create competition. It appears to me that they were extremely successful in both areas
Let’s take a look at what they did with the 12 picks they had this year. In my post of JUne 9 we looked at the first three rounds. Let’s turn our sites on rounds 4 thru seven.
It’s been said that the great teams make their living on finding the hidden gems to be found in the later rounds of the NFL draft each year. Some of thegreatest players in history came via the late rounds with a perfect and glaring example being 6th rounder Tom Brady of the Patriots. Montana, Marino and many others were middle to late round picks and we know how they turned out.
In the fourth round of this year’s draft the JETS took a very large man. Dakota Dozier is a 23 year old, 6-4, 313 pound offensive tackle from tiny Furman. He dominated the competition in his league but scouts questioned his ability to play against the big boys. When Furman played LSU Dozier more than held his…he excelled…and that raised his draft grade substancially. Draft expert Mel Kiper says, ” Dozier is a player who is really aggressive and is able to generate a ton of power as a run blocker”. That’s a good thing. The JETS are looking for aggression and with their offensive backfield of Ivory, Johnson and Powell, run blockers are a good thing to have. But can Dozier do enough as an every down player? Can he protect the QB? Probably not in the beginning. Like many fourth rounders he’s got the raw skills but they need to be fine tuned. Most likey he will be playing guard in the NFL after being a tackle in college. Chances are it’s going to take a while for him to adjust.
In the fifth round the JETS took a real tough guy at inside linebacker. Jeremiah George from Iowa State is a hard working tackling machine but once again as we reach the later rounds, this player will need seasoning, coaching and time to be a productive NFL player. He’s a bit undersized for the position at 5-11 234 but as Dan Leberfeld’s JETS CONFIDENTIAL Draft issue says “George Loves hitting people. He’s coming in as a backup ILB so Special Teams will be a big part of his job.” A lot of lesser players tend to make their bones in the NFL running like crazy men down the field on kick returns and punts. That may be this player’s ticket in.
Rex Ryan loves his corners and he looks for those rare individuals that can play zero coverage out on an island. The Jets sixth round pick Brandon Dixon is just such a player in Brandon Dixon. Asked to describe his playing style Dixon said, “I’m a press-man coner. I like to get my hands on on receivers and get physical on the line of scrimmage”. Again his skill set is something the JETS have been looking to acquire but can this sixth round pick make it in the NFL? Only time will tell.
Lastly with their seventh round pick the JETS selected another wide receiver. Quincy Enunwa from Nebraska is a large wideout at 6-4 225. The league seems to be moving in the direction of large wideouts and this player fits the bill. Dan Leberfeld points out that the player has inconsisten hands and though very strong and smart and durable, he will need plenty of work on his route running and catching skills. Nolan NAwrocki of NFL.com said he has the sheer ability to block out corners. Maybe this player makes it to the practice squad? The Jets have a great number of receivers out to prove something and make this year’s team. It won’t be easy with Decker, Nelson, Hill, Kerley plus 4 draft picks ahead of him. Throw high pick and excellent receiving Tight End Jace Amaro into the mix and there will be quite a bit of competition here.
I think the JETS 2014 Draft will be remember as a successful one but really, as is always the case, only time and game competition will show us how good a draft it turns out to be.