New York Jets Draft Needs: Defensive Line, Outside Linebacker Top The List

Our position by position breakdown of where the Jets should focus in the upcoming draft

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2012 NFL Draft Order: Jets Officially Have 11 Picks In Draft

The complete 2012 NFL Draft Order was released Tuesday, and the New York Jets will have 11 picks during the seven-round, 253-pick event, April 26-28. The Jets will have just one pick in the first five rounds, but will pick three times in rounds six and seven, as they received compensatory selection on Monday.

Here's a full rundown of the Jets' 2012 NFL Draft Order (for Jets mock draft results, click here):

Round 1, Pick 16 (overall 16)
Round 2, Pick 15 (47)
Round 3, Pick 14 (77)
Round 4, Pick 13 (108)
Round 5, Pick 19 (154)
Round 6, Pick 17 (187, from Eagles through Colts)
Round 6, Pick 33 (202, compensatory selection)
Round 6, Pick 34 (203, compensatory selection)
Round 7, Pick 25 (232, from Broncos)
Round 7, Pick 35 (242, compensatory selection)
Round 7, Pick 37 (244, compensatory selection)

For more news and updates on the New York Jets be sure to visit Gang Green Nation and SB Nation New York. For more mock draft information, check out Mocking The Draft. Prospect profiles can also be found at the National Football Post, an SB Nation partner.

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Jets Draft Analysis: Linebacker

Current Situation:

Starters - Calvin Pace, Bryan Thomas, David Harris, Bart Scott

Top Backups - Jamaal Westerman, Josh Mauga, Lance Laury

The Jets are badly in need of a pass rusher at outside linebacker and better overall depth. Calvin Pace is a good all-around player but hasn't given the Jets a full sixteen games in either of the past two seasons. He is better served being a complimentary pass rusher instead of a team's top option. Bryan Thomas is another solid all-around player but lacks explosiveness. Bart Scott and David Harris are one of the the better inside linebacker tandems in the league, who are excellent at slowing down the run but don't provide a ton of big plays.

Recent History

The last time the Jets drafted a linebacker was when they spent the 6th overall pick on some guy named Vernon Gholston.

First Round Probability

Very high. Outside linebackers Akeem Ayers, Justin Houston, and Brooks Reed have all frequently been linked to the Jets in mock drafts and all remain very real possibilties at number 30.

Later Rounds Probability

Very high, even if the Jets spend their first round pick on an outside linebacker, don't surprised to see them add an inside linebacker in later rounds.

Prediction

I would say there is a 50 percent chance the Jets select an outside linebacker with their first round pick. If they don't take one, they will absolutely add one in the later rounds.

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Jets Draft Analysis: Wide Receiver

Current Situation:

Starters - Santonio Holmes, Braylon Edwards

Top Backups - Jerricho Cotchery, Brad Smith, Patrick Turner

There are tons of question marks around this position for the Jets, as Holmes, Edwards, and Smith are all free agents. The conventional thinking throughout the off-season was that Holmes was the top priority and would likely return with Edwards probably leaving via free agency, however he has expressed hesitance about signing his restricted free agent tender and publicly stated he will go where he receives the most money. Edwards has sounded more receptive to returning to New York. Regardless of how the CBA shakes out, Mike Tannenbaum will have his hands full attempting to bring his receivers back.

Recent History

The Jets haven't drafted a receiver since selecting Marcus Henry in 6th round of the 2008 Draft. He is no longer with the team and never made an impact.

First Round Probability

Not likely, but small possibility. Leonard Hankerson and Johnathan Baldwin have been linked to them in some mock drafts but both would be a reach at #30.

Later Rounds Probability

Very high, considering the uncertainty of who will return next year. Denarius Moore from Tennessee and Randall Cobb from Kentucky have both visited the team and could be later round targets.

Prediction

The Jets will draft a receiver in one of the middle rounds.

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Jets Draft Analysis: Secondary

Current Situation:

Starters - Darrelle Revis, Antonio Cromartie, Jim Leonhard, Brodney Pool

Top Backups - Drew Coleman, Kyle Wilson, Eric Smith, James Ihedigbo, Dwight Lowery, Marquice Cole, Emmanuel Cook

The position is in a flux because Cromartie, Pool, Coleman, and Smith are all free agents, along with Leonhard coming off season ending surgery. Darrelle Revis is the best in the business at cornerback but the Jets have some major decisions to make on how to surround him. Those decisions start with Cromartie who was very good opposite Revis at corner last year,  his top backups are Drew Coleman who is a free agent and is better suited to be a nickel back and Kyle Wilson, who struggled heavily in his rookie year. The team must also decide who they want starting at safety opposite Jim Leonhard. My money is on Brodney Pool because of the potential he showed towards the end of the last season.

Recent History

The Jets spent their first round pick on Wilson last year. In 2008, they spent a fourth round pick on Dwight Lowery who has turned into a pretty good role player.

First Round Probability

You can never say never because Rex Ryan loves his cornerbacks and could be tempted if somebody like Colorado's Jimmy Smith is on the board.. There is also an outside chance the Jets could take a long look at UCLA safety Rahim Moore.

Later Rounds Probability

It would be surprising if the Jets didn't spend at least one draft pick on their secondary. I would expect them to target a safety in one of the middle rounds and maybe a corner on day three of the draft.

Prediction

The Jets will leave the draft with two new members of their secondary.

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Jets Draft Analysis: Running Back

Current Situation:

Starters - Shonn Greene (RB), John Conner(FB)

Top Backups - LaDainian Tomlinson, Joe McKnight, Tony Richardson

From what we have heard, the plan is for Shonn Greene to become the starter and take the bulk of the carries, which he never ended up doing last year. John Conner will take over as the starting fullback, while Tony Richardson will likely retire. LaDainian Tomlinson should become the primary third down back, while helping groom Joe McKnight for a bigger role in the offense than he had during his disappointing rookie season.

Recent History

The Jets spent a fourth round pick on McKnight and a fifth round pick on Conner last year. The year before they traded up in the third round to draft Shonn Greene.

First Round Probability

Absolutely none.

Later Rounds Probability

It would be a surprise if the Jets spent another draft pick on the running back position, especially after spending three of them on it in the past two years. It wouldn't look good for Tomlinson to return in 2011 if they did draft a running back.

Prediction

The Jets won't draft a running back. They have too many other areas to address.

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Jets Draft Analysis: Offensive Line

Current Situation: 

Starters - D'Brickashaw Ferguson, Brandon Moore, Matt Slauson, Nick Mangold, Wayne Hunter

Top Backups - Robert Turner, Vladimir Ducasse

You aren't going to find a better tackle-center-guard combination in the NFL than Ferguson, Mangold, and Moore, who anchor this unit. Matt Slauson was better than expected in his first season as a starter. One of the major questions surrounding the team this year is who will fill in for the recently released Damien Woody at right tackle. Second year player Vladimir Ducasse will likely compete with veteran Wayne Hunter for the spot. Hunter is currently not under contract but the Jets will likely bring him back as insurance if Ducasse can't step up and seize the job. Robert Turner played a good amount of reps in the Jets big packages last year and is a quality versatile backup, who is also not currently under contract. It would be a mild surprise if the Jets don't bring him back. 

Recent History

The Jets spent a second round pick on Ducasse last year who wasn't a factor. Ducasse was beat out by Matt Slauson, a 2009 sixth round pick who is the current starter at left guard. The Jets also took a lineman in 2008 when they selected tackle Nate Garner in the seventh round. Garner is no longer with the team.

First Round Probability

It would be a shock if the Jets took an offensive lineman in the first round. They did just host Wisconsin OT Gabe Carimi for a visit but he will likely be off the board by number 30 and they were likely just doing their due diligence. 

Later Rounds Probability

It is pretty likely the Jets will draft a lineman at some point in one of the middle or later rounds. Arkansas tackle Ray Dominguez, Slippery Rock center Brandon Fusco and Central Florida tackle Jah Reid have all visited the team and could all be potential targets.

Prediction

The Jets are going to draft a lineman at some point, likely in one the middle rounds. I would expect them to draft a player with the versatility to swing between either guard or tackle. 

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