2021 Jets Mock Draft 2.0: Rounds 1-4
With Gase finally gone and an arsenal of draft picks, the Jets are Primed to turn things around and get back to respectable football
The Jets abysmal season has finally come to a close and the real fun is about to begin. For Jet fans, there's nothing better than mock draft season. And with the #2 pick locked up, along with another 1st rounder this spring, the Jets are primed to enter next season with a new look and more dynamic playmakers. And now, Adam Gase won't be able to hold them back. Let's jump right in.
Round 1, Pick 2
QB - Justin Fields, Ohio State
Can we finally be honest with ourselves Jet fans? Sam Darnold needs to go. He was once considered an exceptionally exciting prospect, but he has regressed tremendously since being drafted three years ago and there's nothing the Jets are going to be able to do to sell him as the franchise quarterback any further. He ranks dead last in the league in nearly all statistical categories and still makes the same head-scratching mistakes he did his rookie year. At times, it looks like he just flat-out struggles to see the field. A new coach and one or two more playmakers is only going to marginally improve Darnold's game. It's time to give him and the Jets a fresh start.
In our last mock, Trevor Lawrence was the pick here, but after winning two meaningless games, the Jets now hold the #2 selection in the 2021 NFL Draft. You have to give the team credit for continuing to fight down the stretch, even if it cost them the best QB prospect in 20 years. But don't fret Jets fans. This is another super-talented QB class. So with the 2nd pick in our mock draft, we selected Ohio State quarterback, Justin Fields. Did you see him absolutely torch Lawrence's Tigers in the Sugar Bowl? Whatever doubts people had about his talent, Fields silenced those worries and showed why he'd be the 1st overall pick in any other draft year. His arm strength is truly a sight to behold and his athleticism and speed will allow him to join the trend of multi-dimensional QBs in the NFL. We don't want to get ahead of ourselves here, but the Russell Wilson vibes are hard to ignore.
Round 1, Pick 27 (From Seattle)
RB - Najee Harris, Alabama
HURDLE! With the second pick of the first round, the Jets select Najee Harris, running back, Alabama. In Alabama's matchup with Notre Dame in the Rose Bowl, Najee Harris reminded everyone of his insane athleticism when he hurdled a defender who was practically standing straight up. Harris isn't the fastest runner in this draft, but he's fast enough. And what he lacks in breakaway speed, he makes up for in field vision, downhill running, cutback ability, and yards after contact. Alabama continues to produce NFL-ready running backs. There's no reason Harris shouldn't be the first one off the board in the spring.
Yes, the Jets just drafted La'Mical Perine, but he didn't inspire much confidence in the 2020 season and Harris is another level of athlete. The combination of Fields and Harris would immediately change the identity of the Jets offense. Remember when the Jets were known for running the ball well? It's time the team re-established that reputation with both a dynamic quarterback and ultra-athletic running back who can give nightmares to opposing defensive coordinators.
Round 2, Pick 34
WR - Chris Olave, Ohio State
Notice a trend? The Jets offense was ranked last in the league this past season. The most valuable picks in the draft need to be used on immediate weapons who can get on the field Day 1. So in Round 1, we secured the starting QB and starting RB. In Round 2, we give the QB some help and take pressure off Denzel Mims by adding WR Chris Olave. The Ohio State receiver is a technician when it comes to route running and has the speed to get behind the defense for big chunk plays. With Mims manning the roll of the physical, possession receiver, Olave adds a different and needed skill-set to the wide receiver room with the ability to separate from defenders. Olave also has rapport with Fields, as the duo dominated the Big 10 together this past season. If the Jets can find a way to add a player like Allen Robinson in free agency, we may witness one of the best young receiver groups in the league in 2021.
Round 3, Pick 66
EDGE - Quincy Roche, Miami
Same pick here as our last mock. We love Roche at this point in the draft. He's raw, but has a lot of upside. Here's the breakdown from our last mock:
In 2020, Quinnen Williams has blossomed on the interior of the DL. He continually beats double teams and creates pressure for opposing QBs. The Jets are pretty set at DL, but need a true pass rusher who can take the pressure off Quinnen and allow him to double his sack total. Enter Quincy Roche. Roche is explosive off the first step and his footwork throws off opposing O-linemen on a regular basis. His hand technique is violent. At 235 lbs, he is undersized for an every-down pass rusher, but he plays bigger than he weighs. Before transferring to Miami this season, he generated 13 sacks and 19 tackles for loss in 2019 at Temple. He also recorded 68 pressures that season, which was good for 2nd in the nation. Roche would be a great compliment to Quinnen for years to come and would finally give the Jets a respectable pass rush.
Round 4, Pick 90
WR - Amari Rodgers, Clemson
This is another pick from our last mock that we still love. Rodgers possesses the ability to high-point the football and not give the defender a chance to knock it loose. For a slot receiver, this is impressive. His hands are like glue, he plays with strength, and can burn over-confident corners.
With Denzel Mims manning the "large-and-in-charge" WR body type and Olave handling the downfield WR role, the 5'10 Rodgers is able to compliment the play style of these two with quickness and exceptional play in the slot. Jamison Crowder has manned this position well for the Jets, but adding a dynamic piece like Rodgers couldn't hurt. He possesses higher upside than Crowder and can learn under Crowder for a season before taking over the position full time. With some improvements in route running, Rodgers can become an excellent starting receiver in the league. Rodgers is also a great returner, something the Jets have been lacking for some time now.
Yes, the Jets lost out on Trevor Lawrence, but you can see through this mock draft how Douglas can still build a competitive and exciting offense. Pairing the dynamic nature of Fields with athletic players like Harris, Olave, and Rodgers will give the Jets an offense to be reckoned with in today's NFL. Fields is a leader who can make every throw. He will be a captain by Year 2 with the new-look Jets. Not a bad conciliation prize for a franchise desperately ready to win again.
Jets 2021 Starting Offense Post Mock Draft 2.0
QB - Justin Fields
RB - Najee Harris
WR1 - Allen Robinson (pending free agency)
WR2 - Denzel Mims
WR3 - Chris Olave
Slot - Jamison Crowder/Amari Rodgers
TE - Chris Herndon
OT - Mekhi Becton
OT - George Fant
OG - Greg Van Roten
OG - Brandon Scherff/Joe Thuney (pending free agency)
C - Connor McGovern