Phil Taylor, DT, Baylor.
The 3-4 defense simply does not function properly without a dominating nose tackle, and with two-time All-Pro Kris Jenkins oft-injured and apparently uninterested in return to the New York Jets Rex Ryan’s defense doesn’t have one.
That makes the 6-foot-3, 334-pound Taylor — the top nose tackle prospect on the board — a natural choice for the Jets in this spot.
Draft Countdown summarized Taylor this way:
Showed lots of potential early in career then struggled as a junior before really coming on as a senior and improving draft stock — Possesses intriguing size and profiles as a prototypical nose tackle in a even (4-3) or odd (3-4) front.
Some might consider Taylor a reach at this point in the draft. If the Jets do, their other option would appear to be trying to add an impact player at defensive end or outside linebacker. Names worthy of consideration might be Akeem Ayers of UCLA, Muhammad Wilkerson of Temple, Brooks Reed of Arizona and Justin Houston of Georgia.