The New York Jets come off a successful 7-10 season. However, losing six consecutive games after starting the season at 5-2 was a gutting finish. The Jets still hold the NFL’s longest playoff drought with their last appearance in 2011.
After the defense emerged as a top-five unit, it feels like New York is a quarterback away from competing in the postseason. A terrific 2022 draft class was a major factor in the Jets’ turnaround season. New York hopes to repeat with another fantastic haul in the upcoming 2023 NFL Draft. Here are several needs the Jets could address.
2022 Season Record: 7-10
Status of Coach: Robert Saleh – Safe
Positions of Need
- Offensive tackle
- Wide receiver
Notable Draft Picks
- Round 1, Pick 13
- Round 2, Pick 44
Potential First-Round Targets
The Jets are in play for about every quarterback available. NFL odds have New York as the favorite (+225) for Derek Carr’s next team. Jimmy Garoppolo will likely be on the move and he is the second favorite (+300) to be the Jets’ next starting QB. If Lamar Jackson enters free agency or is dealt, New York could be a player and has +350 odds to be his next team.
The Jets could also address its QB problem in the draft. In fact, Alabama’s Bryce Young and Ohio State’s C.J. Stroud both hold +1200 odds to be New York’s 2023 starter. Both would require a trade-up, which is certainly possible with the Chicago Bears holding the top pick.
If the Jets stay put at No. 13, they will likely pass on quarterback. Florida’s Anthony Richardson could be available but is a bad fit since he is a developmental piece and New York wants to win now. Offensive tackle looks like the ideal option at No. 13.
The Jets do not have an answer at either tackle spot. The 2022 fourth-round pick, Max Mitchell struggled in his debut season, and former first-round pick Mekhi Becton has played in one game since 2021 due to injuries. Peter Skoronski (Northwestern), Paris Johnson Jr. (Ohio State), and Broderick Jones (Georgia) are first-round talents that will likely be top-20 picks.
New York cannot go wrong with any of these promising prospects. Skoronski excelled in pass protection at Northwestern and has good athleticism. Johnson is the largest of the three at 6-foot-6, 310 pounds, and has great athleticism and length with an enforcing presence in the run game. Jones could be the best run blocker of the three, but he requires the most work in pass protection.
Learn More About the AFC East Draft 2023
- Buffalo Bills 2023 Positions Needed & First Round Draft Picks
- New England Patriots 2023 Positions Needed & First Round Draft Picks
- Miami Dolphins 2023 Positions Needed & First Round Draft Picks
Potential Second-Round Targets
Safety, linebacker, and wide receiver should be atop the Jets’ list for day two of the draft. Outside of Garrett Wilson’s 1,103 receiving yards, New York’s supporting wideouts lacked consistency. Safety was the clear weak point of the defense as some big plays were given up in the back end. Free safety Lemarcus Joyner enters free agency following a poor season. Kwon Alexander and Quincy Williams are free agents, meaning the Jets could need some help at outside linebacker.
Notre Dame safety Brandon Joseph has excellent ball skills and good speed. Joseph could be the perfect candidate to fill New York’s need for a ball-hawking free safety. Staying on defense, Arkansas outside linebacker Drew Sanders would give the Jets a versatile defensive piece that can bring pressure from the edge.
North Carolina wide receiver Josh Downs or Boston College wideout Zay Flowers would add electric big-play potential to New York’s offense. Both are great after the catch with elite speed and vision.