Sauce Gardner and Jermaine Johnson receive high praise from Richard Sherman and Chandler Jones
The New York Jets stole the show on the first night of the NFL draft. As some expected, they went heavy on the defensive side of the ball, using two of their three picks on defensive players: Cincinnati cornerback Sauce Gardner and Florida State defensive end Jermaine Johnson II.
For Gardner, the Jets brass pushed all their chips into the center of the table, selecting the Cincinnati product at fourth overall. That makes him the highest-drafted cornerback in the team’s history.
An unexpected fall for Johnson prompted general manager Joe Douglas to jump up from 35th to 26th overall, where he pounced on the opportunity to take one of his top graded prospects.
Gardner and Johnson were comfortably within the top 10 prospects of the class for many experts. Former All-Pro defenders Richard Sherman and Chandler Jones agreed when they sent their praises in the direction of the two up-and-coming stars on draft night.
Featured on B/R Gridiron’s Draft Night show, Sherman called Gardner a “hand-in-glove fit” for Robert Saleh‘s Jets.
“I loved Sauce, I love his tape, I love his press technique, I love his confidence. He has everything you want to see in the position,” said Sherman.
Love the Jets pick of Sauce. Saleh knows what he’s doing. Impressive draft for the Jets with Sauce and Wilson going 4 and 10. pic.twitter.com/0S73LVm8UB
— Richard Sherman (@RSherman_25) April 29, 2022
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Shortly after Sherman’s analysis, Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Chandler Jones dropped a bomb on Twitter in support of Jermaine Johnson. After a freefall into the mid-20s, Jones noted how much teams passing on him will regret doing so.
Many teams will regret not getting Jermaine Johnson that kid is gunna be goooood!
— ♛Chandler Jones (@chanjones55) April 29, 2022
For Jets fans, top draft selections receiving compliments from two of the best players at their respective positions in the NFL is a huge reassurance – not that they needed any with Gardner and Johnson, but it’s still nice.
On day two of the NFL draft, the Jets have an opportunity to add even more to an increasingly young and dangerous defense, as they’re slated to pick No. 38 and No. 101 overall.
No matter what the Jets do next, it’s nearly impossible to walk away from the draft as a Jets fan and not be excited about the prospects of the team’s future. Gardner and Johnson have the potential to be franchise cornerstones, as recognized by Sherman and Jones. Throw in Ohio State wide receiver Garrett Wilson (pick No. 10) and you have an outstanding first-round trio.