Even were the New York Jets to lose in their season finale on Sunday, the year has unexpectedly ended on a high note. But a loss might be beneficial in the long-term, at least concerning the fallout of where the Jets could pick next spring in the NFL Draft.
Currently, the 6-9 Jets sit squarely on the No. 10 pick in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft. After beating the Pittsburgh Steelers this past Sunday, the Jets took a mild tumble from picking seventh to picking tenth. Now against the playoff-bound Buffalo Bills, who are 10-5 and beat the Jets in Week 1, another win could see the Jets drop out of the top 10 in the first round entirely.
It may not be the worst thing, especially as momentum from a win and a potential 7-9 record might be more valuable heading into 2020 then moving one or two spots in the draft. But the reality of the situation is that a higher draft pick could potentially change the outlook of the Jets rebuild.
The permutations – and impact – of a Jets win or loss could change the dynamic of their offseason outlook. Especially as a loss might see the Jets rise several spots in the first round pecking order.
“[A] loss ensures a top 10 pick. Then you need to root for the four 5-win teams with a chance to move as high as 6,” said Matt Hoover, founder of Tankathon.com.
“Seems like the realistic worst-case scenario with a win is No. 13. The Broncos and Raiders play each other, so Jets can’t drop behind both. It looks extremely unlikely - impossible? - for the Cowboys to finish with a weaker strength of schedule. Indy, Tampa, and Chicago are not catchable on strength of schedule.”
In four of the last five years, with the exclusion of 2016 when they picked No. 20, the Jets have held a pick inside the top six selections.