2017 NFL Draft Grades: New York Jets Day 3 Picks
The New York Jets wrapped up their 2017 draft with six picks in Rounds 4-7. Here is a report card for each selection.
The final four rounds of the 2017 NFL Draft in Philadelphia were completed on Saturday and the New York Jets had a bevy of selections, six in all, on Day 3 due to a lot of wheeling and dealing by general manager Mike Maccagnan.
Heading into Day 3, Gang Green made a big splash in the first round by choosing LSU safety Jamal Adams, one of the best players in the entire draft. The Jets followed that up with a pair of solid selections, safety Marcus Maye of the Florida Gators in the second round and wide receiver ArDarius Stewart of the Alabama Crimson Tide in Round 3. All filled pressing needs as New York continues to replenish its roster.
Let’s take a look at all six Day 3 picks and provide a grade for each selection:
Round 4, Pick 141: Chad Hansen, WR – California
The Jets continued to stock up on wide receivers with the selection of the 6-2, 202-pounder. Could this possibly signal the end of Eric Decker’s Jets career? We’ll see in due time. Hansen ranked third in the FBS with 9.2 receptions per game and fourth in yards per contest (124.9) while scoring 11 touchdowns as a second-team All-Pac-12 performer. He is known for being a strong route runner with excellent hands and fine body control. Hansen ran the 40-yard dash in 4.53 seconds at the NFL Combine. I would have preferred a tight end like Michigan’s Jake Butt here, but this was a good value selection overall.
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Round 5, Pick 150: Jordan Leggett, TE – Clemson
Finally a tight end! I would have picked Jeremy Sprinkle of Arkansas here, but Leggett (6-5, 258 pounds) has outstanding size for a tight end. The Navaree, FL native was an important cog on the champion Tigers last season and finished his career with 112 catches for 1,598 yards and 18 touchdowns. Leggett is known for having excellent hands (just two dropped passes over his last two seasons), but he has to improve his blocking and work ethic. His passion and desire seems to turn on and off like a faucet at times. His motor needs to be revved up.
Round 5, Pick 181: Dylan Donahue, OLB – West Georgia
Dylan is the son of Mitch Donahue, who played four years in the NFL. He is 6-3, 248 pounds and was the Gulf South Conference Defensive Player of the Year for the Wolves by virtue of his 13.5 sacks, a conference record. Although Donahue excelled last year, we do have to remember he was competing on a Division II level. Even if he is a little undersized, Donahue has an explosive burst off the snap and the Jets could use all the effective pass rushers they can get. He is a good athlete and could commence his NFL career as a special teams contributor.
Round 6, Pick 188: Elijah McGuire, RB – Louisiana-Lafayette
The 5-10, 214-pounder was slowed by a foot injury during his senior season in the Sun Belt Conference and that caused him to have a somewhat disappointing campaign. His touchdown totals dropped from 16 in 2015 to nine last year. Still, McGuire is known for his quick acceleration when fully healthy and good ball security. He is an excellent receiver out of the backfield and also returned punts (28 for 197 yards) during his three seasons with the Rajin’ Cajuns (I love their nickname). He could spell Bilal Powell in certain passing situations this coming season. McGuire needs to improve his blitz pickup skills and break tackles better though (only five broken tackles last season).
Round 6, Pick 197: Jeremy Clark, CB – Michigan
Why did it take until midway through the sixth round for Gang Green to draft a cornerback? Bad job by Maccagnan there. Clark is big for a corner (6-3, 220 pounds) and he possesses excellent press-man ability. His ball skills are solid as well but he tore his ACL in Michigan’s fourth game last year, so will he be ready by training camp? New York is rolling the dice on this one. Clark has high upside, but his health is a major question mark. I would have liked to have seen Maccagnan draft a corner with fewer injury concerns. This grade would have been higher if Clark was not in recovery mode. Grade: C-
Round 6, Pick 204: Derrick Jones, CB – Ole Miss
The Jets used their final pick on another cornerback, this one from the rough and tumble SEC. Jones (6-2, 188 pounds) was not expected to be drafted in some circles, so Maccagnan probably over-reached on this selection. That’s what happens when you wait too long to draft an area of need. With that being said, Jones is known for having outstanding leaping ability and has doubled as a wide receiver at times. His ball and press skills are adequate, he has nice length, but Jones is a poor tackler and his footwork needs great improvement. Jones had limited reps at cornerback so he is a raw project at best.