The Jets are all but locked in at the second overall pick. Any speculation of a possible trade died away after the 49ers traded up to the 3rd overall pick with Miami to get a quarterback. That deal is really only done if the 49ers are confident who will go before they’re on the clock. Despite comments that there have been no conversations between new Jets head coach Robert Saleh and his former bosses Kyle Shanahan and John Lynch, my reaction is…what do you expect them to say? Do you think Saleh would openly admit that he told the 49ers who they would be targeting with the 2nd overall pick. The 49ers gave up all the draft capital they did to get one guy, their franchise quarterback, not to settle for just whoever the Jets didn’t pick.
With the 2nd overall pick in our Jets mock draft 3.0, we see New York handing in Zack Wilson’s draft card.
Wilson impressed at his Pro Day, although that’s what they’re designed for. You could frame it that the Jets aren’t spending one first round pick on Wilson, but actually three. That’s the opportunity cost of this pick. They could trade and get three firsts from the 49ers prior to their trade to three, or from a team like the Broncos or Eagles.
If you’re passing up on three first round picks for someone, you better believe 100% that they’re an elite quarterback who will raise the rest of the roster up above their talent level. This is even more the case when you had a 23-year-old quarterback who was still on his rookie contract on your roster. It’s undeniable that Sam Darnold has yet to play consistently enough for this new regime to trust moving forward with him completely, but you could have tried to revive his career in New York before turning to a new rookie. This is especially the case given the massive draft capital haul that could be used to draft a new quarterback next season or if Darnold really struggles, then it’s likely your record won’t be good at all and you’ll be in prime position to draft one anyway. For not being the number one overall pick, it feels like all the pressure will be on Zack Wilson regardless.
With the 23rd overall pick in our Jets mock draft 3.0, we expect them to select cornerback Greg Newsome II.Embed from Getty Images
Offensive line is tempting here, but their defense feels like it’s just Marcus Maye at this point. They need playmakers and Saleh will probably show preference to this side of the ball. The 49ers had Richard Sherman to fill the role of a lengthy cover corner and now the Jets will get their version in Newsome II.
In the second round of our Jets mock draft 3.0, we predict the pick to be linebacker Nick Bolton.
Linebacker has been a staple of 49ers defenses for many, many years now. Saleh will look to recreate that on his team and Bolton has similar measurables to current 49ers linebacker Fred Warner. Again, offensive line or running back may be tempting here, but Saleh needs to make this defense competitive. Running back would be nice if there was a solid foundation on both sides of the ball, but there’s not. Offensive line is very deep in this draft and can be addressed at the top of the 3rd round.