One year after taking a nose tackle in the first round of the NFL Draft, the New York Jets might be setting up to take an early pick again to bolster the defensive front. And like their selection of Quinnen Williams out of Alabama last year, the Jets could be targeting the SEC again in the first round.
This time though, it won’t be for an interior defensive lineman. It will be for an edge rusher.
K’Lavon Chaisson recently had an online interview with the Jets according to a source. The LSU defensive end was a part of one of the ’video conference visit’ that the NFL is allowing to take place via video in place of facility interviews. With the prohibition of travel and meetings by the league due to COVID-19, the Jets along with the rest of the league are conducting the meetings online rather than at their facility.
One of the star pieces of LSU’s national championship defense last season, Chaisson is loaded with potential. Set to turn 21-years old in late July on the verge what would be his first NFL training camp, Chaisson possesses big upside after a junior year where he made a leap in his output.
He is No. 16 on the SI Big Board.
Playing as an outside linebacker, had 60 tackles, 6.5 sacks and a forced fumble for LSU and was an All-SEC selection by the conference’s coaches. He measured 6-foot-3 and 254 pounds at the NFL Combine.
The Jets come into the draft needing help off the edge. Drafting a player like Chaisson would certainly help free up Williams in the middle, who faced multiple blockers last year in a season where his gap assignment was strong but he didn’t put up big numbers.
The intrigue about Chaisson, who is a likely Day 1 pick who could possibly slip back late into the first round, is his speed and flexibility coming off the edge. While the Jets have other pressing needs such offensive line and wide receiver, the edge rushers in this draft tail off considerably midway through Day 2.
Chaisson is a player to keep an eye on should the Jets move back in the first round from No. 11 and go with the best available player.