How will the Jets use their picks in the 2018 NFL draft? We’re breaking down every selection below.
The New York Jets continue their quest for a top–flight quarterback and with the third pick in the draft, they certainly had the opportunity to find their man.
The Jets again missed the playoffs in 2017, posting a 5–11 record. They will again put the offense in the hands of 38–year-old Josh McCown until a better option arrives.
While the back end of the defense seems solid with Jamal Adams and Marcus Maye as safeties, the lack of a pass rush was evident last season. The Jets had only 28 sacks and the defense as a whole had 20 total takeaways.
How will they use their picks in the NFL draft? We’re breaking down every selection below.
Here's the full list of picks the Jets hold in the 2018 draft, which will be updated as each selection is made.
Round 1, Pick 3 (No. 3 overall)
Sam Darnold, QB, USC
Andy Benoit's grade: B
The Jets traded a boatload to move up and draft a QB, and they didn’t know which QB it’d be. Presumably, they never dreamed it’d be Darnold, whom many thought to be the best all-around quarterback in this draft. Darnold has a unique ability to make plays off-schedule, but it’s always a crapshoot whether that translates to the NFL. As a rhythmic, pocket player (which is where consistent NFL success is found), he’ll need some mechanical polishing, and not just in his throwing motion, which is awkward but not grossly flawed. He’ll also need better weapons around him. The Jets have some important picks ahead of them in Rounds 3-7.
Scouting Report: Darnold had some growing pains in his first full year as a starter at USC—he saw a lot of new looks from opposing defenses and took some time to adjust, turning the ball over far too frequently. But few doubt Darnold’s ability to learn at the next level, and his physical skills (strong-armed and accurate), mental makeup and ability to make plays late in the down give him franchise QB potential.
Round 3, Pick 8 (No. 72 overall): Nathan Shepard, DT, Fort Hays State
Andy Benoit's grade: C+
Steve McLendon and Xavier Cooper are in contract years, and the Jets had no D-line depth aside from ex-Packer Mike Pennel. Todd Bowles’s scheme requires versatility from D-linemen. Can Shepherd expand his game?
Round 4, Pick 7 (No. 107 overall): Chris Herndon, TE, Miami
Round 6, Pick 5 (No. 179 overall): Parry Nickerson, CB, Tulane
Round 6, Pick 6 (No. 180 overall): Folorunso Fatukasi, DL, Connecticut
Round 6, Pick 30 (No. 204 overall): Trenton Cannon, RB, Virginia State