The New York Jets have been walking down the street with a little pep in their step and for good reason.
They have a treasure chest of draft assets and a burning desire to make a big move. Fortunately they got that opportunity in this potential scenario.
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Now You’re Speaking My Language
ESPN NFL draft analyst Mel Kiper dropped his latest mock draft on April 13 and it featured a big-time trade by the Jets.
In his predicted scenario, the green and white launched back into the first round in a trade with the Cincinnati Bengals:
Jets receive: No. 31 overall (first-rounder)
Bengals receive: No. 35 overall (second-rounder) and a 2022 fourth-rounder
Kiper didn’t indicate specifically which fourth-rounder it would be, the Jets own two of them. To make the trade as close to even as possible we’ll make it No. 117 overall.
According to the NFL draft value chart, it was a near-even pick swap with the Bengals giving up 600 points and the Jets giving up 610 points.
Gang Green traded up for Iowa center Tyler Linderbaum and here is what Kiper had to say about it:
“Could Linderbaum be the Jets’ new Nick Mangold? They took Mangold at pick No. 29 in 2006 and have been trying to fill that void at center since he left the team after the 2016 season. Some NFL teams are put off by Linderbaum’s short arms, but just watch the tape. He has the physical traits to be an All-Pro and is exceptional as both a run and pass blocker. He’s exactly what the Jets need, and this is a tremendous value.”
Offensive Line Would Be Complete
If the Jets made this selection it would give them so many options to play with this offseason.
They could then immediately move on from veteran center Connor McGovern. By releasing him they could save $9 million on the cap.
On the Flight Deck Podcast back on March 24, ESPN Jets insider Rich Cimini said McGovern “can easily be out” and the team “wanted to upgrade” at the center position this offseason.
“This is something to watch, we definitely know that the Jets aren’t locked in to McGovern. We definitely learned that this offseason so maybe that draft one [a center], this is something to watch.”
Gang Green could also pull a page out of their playbook from last season when they approached wide receiver, Jamison Crowder, about a pay cut. It didn’t feature many guarantees on his contract so they cut the value in half and gave him some financial security.
The Jets could pull off a very similar thing with McGovern and ensure depth on the interior of the offensive line. McGovern has versatility playing both right guard and center at the NFL level.
This would complete the offensive line for the Jets and provide one of the best units they have had in a decade on paper:
- Mekhi Becton
- Laken Tomlinson
- Alijah Vera-Tucker
- George Fant
This impressive trench play would set up second-year quarterback Zach Wilson beautifully to make a quantum leap next season.
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