Five Guys I’d Like The Jets To Look At With Their First Round Pick

The first round of the 2012 NFL Draft is tonight and lots of speculation has begun on who will go where and what trades will happen. All we do know is that Stanford QB Andrew Luck and Baylor QB Robert Griffin III will go 1 and 2 to the Indianapolis Colts and Washington Redskins, respectively. Then anything goes as the Minnesota Vikings have the third overall pick and are weighing many options to either draft USC OT Matt Kalil, LSU CB Morris Claiborne, or trade the pick to a team that would like to move up and get Alabama RB Trent Richardson, who is the biggest running back prospect since Adrian Peterson. One of those teams is the New York Jets.

The Jets are very high on Richardson and with new offensive coordinator Tony Sparano instituting a ground and pound offense, I’m sure he’s campaigning hard for Trent. The price may be very steep though as a few teams are reportedly interested in trading up to the number three slot with Minnesota and if you do trade in there, it is in fact the THIRD overall pick and you’ll possibly be getting the next big thing at RB in Trent Richardson. If Minnesota doesn’t trade the pick, it is expected that the Cleveland Browns, selecting fourth, will draft Richardson as they have no one at running back. If somehow, Trent Richardson slides out of the top five, which I highly doubt happens, it is very possible that Richardson slides out considerably and maybe even out of the top 10.

I’m going to name five players I’d like the Jets to target with the 16th overall pick tonight. I will NOT be considering Trent Richardson, as I am a firm believer that he will not make it out of the top five and the Jets won’t trade up for him. I have four defensive players in mind and one offensive player. Some of these players will be available and some won’t be. Maybe all five are gone by the time the Jets pick, or maybe all five are available. I will say that this is shaping up to be one of the more exciting drafts in a while. So without further ado, here are five players I’d like the Jets to target with the 16th overall pick.

5.Michael Floyd, WR, Notre Dame: This is the offensive player that I want and obviously he is behind the four defensive players on my list. Floyd is the second best WR in the draft and has great size. He’s 6’3, 224 pounds. He has solid speed as he ran a 4.42 40 time. He’s also the most physical wide receiver in the draft as he is a great run blocker and improves any teams run game. With the Jets being a run oriented team now, and also in need of a legit number two receiver, Floyd makes for an intriguing pick. There’s a very good chance that Floyd doesn’t make it to 16 as quite a few teams ahead of them may select him like the Jaguars at 7, Dolphins at 8, Panthers at 9, Bills at 10, and Cardinals at 13.

4.Courtney Upshaw, DE/OLB, Alabama: I used to be very, very high on Upshaw and he used to be my number one choice at 16. He isn’t as fast as I remember and other guys have shot up my list lately, pushing Upshaw down to four. Upshaw is a beast and played on arguably the best defense in college football and may come to a top five defense in the NFL. Upshaw has been impressive the last two years in college. He didn’t participate in many of the combine drills either. He is one of the best 3-4 linebackers in the draft and would fit in well with the Jets system, I believe. Upshaw’s ceiling is the middle of the first round, and he could also drop to the beginning of the second round.

3.Quinton Coples, DE, North Carolina: Coples may be the best defensive end in the draft and may go in the top 10. The guy to me is the best pass rusher in the draft and probably will go top 10. There are questions surrounding his motor skills and if he can stay consistent and committed. He has the size, as he’s 6’6 and 278 pounds. With the questions surrounding his motor, there is speculation that Coples may drop and go as late as number 20 to the Titans. If there is one guy who can get a young kid to get his head on straight, it’s Rex Ryan. Rex will not let a young promising defensive player slack off and he will make sure Coples plays his behind off in this great defense.

2.Mark Barron, SS, Alabama: The Jets need a safety bad after losing Jim Leonard to a torn patella tendon in December and him not re-signing, yet, at least. Barron is the top safety in the draft and has a sky-high IQ and along with Upshaw, played on arguably the best defense in college football, at Alabama. The Jets have two of the best corner back’s in the NFL in Darrell Revis and Antonio Cromartie, so adding Barron to that secondary would be huge. Some believe he can be the next Ed Reed of safeties. Barron has good size too, as he’s 6’1 and 213 pounds. He ran a 4.54 40 time at his pro day. If Barron is available at 16, which doesn’t look likely right now as the Cowboys are picking 14th and want him bad and many teams discussing trading up with Jacksonville at 7 or Buffalo at 10 to get him, and my number one target isn’t available anymore, I’d love for the Jets to not even hesitate to select Barron.

1.Melvin Ingram, DE/OLB, South Carolina: This guy is a BEAST. He tore it up at South Carolina and is a possible top 10 pick. He’s 6’2 and 264 pounds. Ingram totaled 10 sacks, 48 tackles, 15 tackles for loss, two interceptions, and one fumble recovery in 10 games this past season. He also made nine sacks in the 2010 season. He does a solid job getting through protection and giving the quarterback no time to get rid of the ball. He’s a smart kid and Rex Ryan is in love with him. There are rumors that the Jets may trade up to the 11-12-13 range to get Ingram if he’s still available. There’s a slight chance that they won’t have to trade up for Ingram, but I think there’s a pretty good chance he doesn’t make it to 16. The Jets need a pass rusher in the worst way and getting this kid will be a great addition to this defense. He looks like he has his head on straight and has no off field issues and is a great fit for this defense. I sure hope this guy drops to the Jets, if not, I’ll be okay with Barron, Coples, Upshaw, or Floyd as fall back options. 

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