The NFL world is enamored with the New York Jets’ first-round haul
Coming into the NFL draft, cornerback Ahmad Gardner, wide receiver Garrett Wilson, and defensive end Jermaine Johnson were all projected to be top 15 picks. All three were even projected as high as the fourth overall pick in recent weeks.
The fact that the New York Jets walked away with all three was unthinkable merely days ago. According to general manager Joe Douglas, the Jets had all three ranked in the top eight of their draft boards.
GM Joe Douglas said all three players selected tonight were in the Top 8 of our draft board. pic.twitter.com/6OWyWAryij
— New York Jets (@nyjets) April 29, 2022
The praise has been pouring in from around the NFL, with the Jets receiving plenty of credit from names like Mel Kiper Jr., Daniel Jeremiah, and Damien Woody.
Jets drafted 3 players and I saw all 3 mocked to them at #4 overall at one point.
— Sam Monson (@PFF_Sam) April 29, 2022
The Jets ended up with my top cornerback (Sauce Gardner) and top receiver (Garrett Wilson) and didn’t have to trade up. Nice night.
— Mel Kiper Jr. (@MelKiperESPN) April 29, 2022
The Jets came away with 3 of my Top 9 players! Thought Jermaine Johnson was in the mix for them at 10, there he was at 26. They're cooking with gas!
— Daniel Jeremiah (@MoveTheSticks) April 29, 2022
Jets really did the damn thang tonight!!!
— Damien Woody (@damienwoody) April 29, 2022
Draft analyst Chad Reuter added on to this by giving the Jets an “A” grade for their first three picks. NFL.com’s Jeffri Chadiha even ranked Joe Douglas as the biggest winner from Round 1.
NFL Network’s Cynthia Frelund had arguably the highest praise for the Jets. Using her analytical model, she had the Jets adding 2.25 wins with their first-round haul. This is the most for any team (quarterbacks excluded) in the first round over the last 10 seasons.
— Stefan Stelling (@li_jets) April 29, 2022
After last night, Douglas has now made six first-round picks with the New York Jets:
- OT Mekhi Becton
- QB Zach Wilson
- G Alijah Vera-Tucker
- CB Ahmad Gardner
- WR Garrett Wilson
- DE Jermaine Johnson
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The Jets’ vision is starting to come to fruition. The trenches are built. The offensive line features Mekhi Becton, Alijah Vera-Tucker, Connor McGovern, Laken Tomlinson, and George Fant. The defensive line is led by Carl Lawson, Quinnen Williams, John Franklin-Myers, and Jermaine Johnson.
New York’s wide receiver room goes from barren to set for years with Garrett Wilson, Elijah Moore, and Corey Davis. The same goes for the cornerback room, which features Sauce Garder, D.J. Reed, Bryce Hall, Brandin Echols, Michael Carter II, and Javelin Guidry.
Still armed with the 38th, 101st, 117th, and 143rd picks in the draft, the Jets have plenty of work left to do.
Considering how last night went, I highly doubt the Jets will be staying in those spots. More trades seem likely to come.
Regardless, the Jets have already won the draft in the eyes of many unbiased observers. The only question is how much better they’ll get by the end of the weekend.