2016 Draft Brings Uncertainty for Jets & Giants
by John Jastremski
May 04, 2016 | 9865 views | 0 0 comments | 294 294 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Regardless of what any draft expert may tell you, there’s always going to be a sense of mystery when it comes to forecasting the NFL Draft.

You are entering the world of unknown for a lot of collegiate football players given the opportunity to play on the grand stage.

If it was that easy picking NFL Players, Russell Wilson wouldn’t have lasted till the third round of the 2012 draft or Tom Brady would’ve been selected way sooner than the sixth round in 2000.

There’s no exact science for figuring out the NFL Draft. For example, two years ago, I would bet a good amount of Giants fans had no idea who Odell Beckham Jr. was.

Funny what a difference two years can make!

However, it doesn’t mean we can’t sit here post-draft and try and analyze what the Jets and Giants are trying to do when it comes to setting up 2016.

It’s too much to fun, so of course we’ll try!

General manager Jerry Reese and the New York Giants have struggled mightily the last couple of years in the draft, but it’s in the mid-rounds where they have had their issues.

They’ve nailed their first-round picks, that’s great, but they haven’t added any depth to the roster. Thus, they’ve missed the playoffs the last four seasons.

I like what Jerry Reese was able to do in the later rounds this year. Sterling Shepard fills a need at wide receiver due to the health concerns for Victor Cruz and I love the fact that the Giants drafted an impact linebacker in BJ Goodson in the fourth round, a position the team desperately needed to improve upon.

However, the first round pick of Eli Apple was perplexing. Apple was not projected to be a top-ten pick and was not the best corner on the board according to most experts.

It seems like the Giants reached to take this player. It’s never a proper draft strategy to have.

The Giants had the opportunity to take Laremy Tunsil, the offensive linemen out of Ole Miss who saw his draft positioning plummet due to a video released 20 minutes before the draft of Tunsil in a Bane-like mask smoking a bong of marijuana.

Clearly there were character concerns and the Giants decided to go in a different direction. I would’ve taken the risk and thankfully my football team the Miami Dolphins stepped up to the plate.

Concerns about marijuana scared off teams about Warren Sapp, a future Hall Of Famer. Giant fans better hope they are not saying the same thing about Laremy Tunsil.

As for the Jets, they complimented their defense by adding much-needed speed at the linebacker position.

First-round pick Darron Lee and third-round pick Jordan Jenkins provide exactly what head coach Todd Bowles was looking for out of his linebackers. Speedy, sideline-to-sideline type players.

However, the Jets also made quite the polarizing pick themselves by selecting Penn State quarterback Christian Hackenberg with their second-round pick.

Hackenberg was the highest-rated high school quarterback and delivered a terrific freshman season in Happy Valley.

However, once his head coach Bill O’Brien left to coach the Houston Texans, Hackenberg was never the same player.

He missed throws, his completion percentage plummeted and he played poorly in his final two seasons at Penn State.

He has the tools, he looks the part, but can he deliver and be the Jets franchise quarterback.

Maybe the second round was a bit of a reach, but to me it’s worth the risk.

If you are a team that does not have a franchise quarterback, you should draft a quarterback year after year after year until you find one.

The Jets are in that exact position.

They should shift their focus on re-signing Ryan Fitzpatrick, gear up and try to improve on a ten-win season and hope that Hackenberg with the proper coaching can develop into that long-term solution at the position.

The NFL Draft and specifically the NFL offseason provides two things for football fans across the country: hope and usually a whole lot of questions, unless you’re a Patriots fan; only hope in their camp.

As far as who won the NFL Draft, only time will tell.

You can listen to me on WFAN Sports Radio 660/101.9 FM Sunday afternoon from 3 to 7 p.m. and Wednesday 2 to 6 a.m. on CBS Sports Radio.
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