Attempting to project which player the New York Jets will take in the 2011 NFL Rookie Draft is a tough task, but of one thing I am certain: He will play on the defensive side of the ball.
Coach Rex Ryan came to New York with the reputation of being a defensive wizard and the Jets have improved under him. However, it was their inability to stop Pittsburgh’s offense last January that led to their ouster in the AFC Championship game. With key offensive pieces like quarterback Mark Sanchez and running back Shonn Greene in place, Gang Green will want to focus on becoming one of the top three defensive units in the NFL.
Here are some strong possibilities for the Jets to take with the 30th pick.
Phil Taylor-NT-Temple University:
Taylor is a mountain of a man (6’3, 334lbs.) who possesses enviable agility in shedding blocks. He also has a nose for getting into the backfield and disrupting the play. The Jets have Kris Jenkins playing the role right now, but, after consecutive seasons of serious injuries, may be willing to part ways with him. Taylor could rotate in with Sione Piouha to form a powerful run-stopping duo.
The Jets could draft Jordan and hope that he turns out to be everything Vernon Gholston wasn’t: A game-changing hybrid who presents matchup nightmares for opposing coaches. He is fast, strong, agile and contributes in ways that don’t always show up on the stat sheet (like drawing double-teams and deflecting attention from others.) His stock is on the rise after an excellent Combine performance.
Choosing Ayers would give the Jets another pass rushing linebacker, something that a team that plays in the same conference as Tom Brady and Peyton Manning can always use. He is versatile and can also drop into coverage against tight ends. He is a bit raw in comparison with some other prospects, but Rex Ryan could fall in love with his abilities.
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Written by Frank Mazzola