2013 DRAFT GUIDE
Optimism for Jets after drafting impact players

    2012-04-29 15:57

(Eds: Updates. With AP Photos.)
By DENNIS WASZAK Jr.
AP Sports Writer

NEW YORK (AP) - Rex Ryan wanted impact players out of the NFL draft, and the New York Jets coach thinks he got his wish.

So much so that Ryan already declared - although he later backed off - that big defensive lineman Quinton Coples and speedy wide receiver Stephen Hill will be starters for a team determined to get back to the playoffs.

``Yes,'' Ryan said without hesitation late Saturday night. ``How's that one?''

Well, it remains to be seen what the veterans will think of that bold and possibly premature statement. But Ryan's excitement is understandable.

After all, he and his team are coming off a disappointing season and a winter of uncertainty, and this was indeed an important draft for him, general manager Mike Tannenbaum and the rest of the organization. There were some serious holes in the roster heading into the draft and there's still work to be done, including possibly at right tackle and outside linebacker. But there's no doubt the Jets improved their overall team speed on both sides of the ball and added some aggressive and physical players - just as Ryan likes `em.

``We'll just keep adding good football players,'' Tannenbaum said. ``I do like what we got accomplished.''

New York split their eight picks evenly between offense - Hill, running back Terrance Ganaway and guard Robert T. Griffin, both sixth-rounders from Baylor, and wide receiver Jordan White (seventh) - and defense - Coples, inside linebacker Demario Davis (third), and safeties Josh Bush (sixth) and Antonio Allen (seventh).

Oh, and Tannenbaum joked that he also really likes his fourth-round pick. That's the draft selection, of course, that the Jets traded to the Denver Broncos, along with a sixth-rounder, to acquire backup quarterback Tim Tebow.

The Jets' offense will have a different look because of Tebow, who'll play a key role in running wildcat and option-style plays behind starter Mark Sanchez. But Tannenbaum brushed aside thoughts that New York brought in some guys on offense - Hill, Ganaway, Griffin - who are used to playing in a style suited to Tebow's skill set.

``That would just be a coincidence,'' Tannenbaum said.

The rule of thumb is that it takes three years to accurately assess draft picks, but the Jets hope at least a few in this year's group quickly get the arrow pointed up and keep it there.

It all starts with Coples, a 6-foot-5, 285-pound defensive lineman from North Carolina who has a knack for the sack and creating commotions up front. Although many fans at the draft's site at Radio City Music Hall were chanting for the Jets to take South Carolina's Melvin Ingram at No. 16 overall, Coples might be better suited for what Ryan wants to do. And that, of course, is to be the league's No. 1 defense.

``I'm going to just come in and make an impact as soon as I can,'' Coples said after being drafted. ``I'm going to come in as a rookie and work my way up.''

The Jets are loaded with depth on the defensive line, and that will allow Ryan to mix and match players at different spots. It could be Coples and Muhammad Wilkerson, the team's top pick last year, on the ends and Sione Pouha in the middle of the 3-4 base defense. Or, Ryan could rotate Coples with incumbent starter Mike DeVito, and mix in others such as Marcus Dixon, Ropati Pitoitua and Kenrick Ellis with a four-man front.

``We do have unusual depth right now,'' Ryan said. ``We have it set up where we can do a lot of things with that front. ... You want to have guys that are fresh to rush the quarterback in the fourth quarter. The more of these guys you get, the better it is for your team.''

Coples could knock DeVito out of the starting lineup, as Ryan said, but who starts might not matter much in this defense.

``When I say they're going to start, there's so many different roles,'' Ryan said. ``There's so many different things they're going to start on. There's sub-team, there's this team, there's all those different things. They're going to play significantly. Is it 100 percent that it's all 16 games? It really depends on what we're in.''

Davis is a hard-hitting tackling machine from Arkansas State who'll back up Bart Scott and likely replace him in the next season or two. Bush and Allen will provide depth at safety, where the Jets only had LaRon Landry and Eric Smith as players with any significant NFL experience. All three newcomers, plus White, should also boost the Jets' special teams unit - and coordinator Mike Westhoff surely had a big part in identifying them as dual-purpose players.

Ryan saying that Hill will come in and start is hardly a surprise. The Jets were in need of a field-stretching wide receiver who could take pressure off Santonio Holmes, and that's exactly what Hill can do. He played in a triple-option offense at Georgia Tech, but made the most of his catches by setting an NCAA record by averaging 55.2 yards on his nine touchdown grabs.

At 6-4 and 215 pounds, the Jets envision him as a potential Calvin Johnson-type player and he should beat out Chaz Schilens and Jeremy Kerley for the No. 2 job. He's also a ferocious blocker - perfect for New York's run-first offense. Throw in Ganaway, a 5-11, 240-pound bull of a back who'll team with big-bodied Shonn Greene, and Ryan's desire to have a true ``Ground-and-Pound'' approach appears to be set up nicely.

``I think we've complemented our team in a lot of ways,'' Tannenbaum said. ``With that said, whatever opportunities present themselves, we'll go ahead and there's guys who we're trying to sign now that will be great stories.''

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Josh MorganApr 22 09:52a

Chicago Bears WR Joshua Morgan is likely to compete for the No. 3 or 4 wide receiver role this year, and he'll compete with WRs Domenik Hixon, Eric Weems [ More ]

Will HillApr 22 09:33a

New York Giants FS Will Hill is facing a year-long suspension after reportedly failing another drug test. He will appeal what would be his third drug-related suspension.

Kyle WilliamsApr 21 09:33p

The Kansas City Chiefs re-signed WR Kyle Williams Monday, April 21. Terms of the deal were undisclosed.

Colt AndersonApr 21 07:12p

The Indianapolis Colts signed free-agent FS Colt Anderson (Eagles) to an undisclosed deal Monday, April 21.

Jamar TaylorApr 21 06:43p

Miami Dolphins CB Jamar Taylor (groin) is healthy following hernia surgery and began offseason workouts with his teammates Monday, April 21. Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin said he expects [ More ]

Dustin KellerApr 21 05:42p

Eugene Parker, agent for free-agent TE Dustin Keller (knee), said Keller is ready to participate in offseason workouts when he signs with a team.

Eric FisherApr 21 05:12p

Kansas City Chiefs OT Eric Fisher (shoulder, hernia) said there is no timetable for his return following multiple surgeries, but he doesn't think he'll be out for long. 'He's [ More ]

Josh MorganApr 21 04:02p

The Chicago Bears have signed free-agent WR Joshua Morgan (Redskins) to a one-year deal. Financial terms were not disclosed.

A.J. GreenApr 21 03:32p

Cincinnati Bengals WR A.J. Green said he has added around six pounds this offseason, because he wants to be more physical as a way to beat coverage at the [ More ]

Michael VickApr 21 02:42p

New York Jets QB Geno Smith said he believes he will be the starting quarterback this upcoming season even though the team added QB Michael Vick this offseason. He [ More ]

Navorro BowmanApr 21 02:12p

The San Francisco 49ers plan to place LB NaVorro Bowman (knee) on the Physically Unable to Perform list when training camp begins, because he is not expected to be [ More ]

Eric FisherApr 21 02:02p

Kansas City Chiefs OT Eric Fisher (shoulder, hernia) underwent shoulder surgery and had a procedure to fix a sports hernia. He's currently rehabbing in Kansas City.

Tony CarterApr 21 01:22p

The Denver Broncos signed DT Mitch Unrein to his restricted free-agent tender Monday, April 21. CB Tony Carter, SS Duke Ihenacho and LB Brandon M. Marshall all signed their exclusive rights tenders.

Rolando McClainApr 21 01:02p

Baltimore Ravens LB Rolando McClain is retiring from the NFL again Monday, April 21. 'I gotta follow my heart. It ain't football. If football made me complete I would [ More ]

Tony RomoApr 21 12:42p

Dallas Cowboys QB Tony Romo (back) will take part in the team's voluntary offseason program beginning Monday, April 21, according to a source. Players are allowed to lift weights, [ More ]

Marcus LattimoreApr 20 09:12p

San Francisco 49ers RB Marcus Lattimore (knee) is not expected to be restricted in any way when offseason workouts begin.

Michael EgnewApr 20 08:42p

The Miami Dolphins likely will add at least two more tight ends this offseason that will compete with TE Michael Egnew for a roster spot.

Armon BinnsApr 20 12:02a

Miami Dolphins WR Armon Binns is currently the team's No. 4 receiver, but the Dolphins have had discussions about WR Rishard Matthews replacing Binns at the spot, according to a source.

Tyrone CrawfordApr 20 12:02a

Dallas Cowboys DT Tyrone Crawford (Achilles') is expected to be ready for the team's offseason program, and he is expected to be a key piece to the defense this season.

M. Jones-DrewApr 20 12:02a

If healthy, Oakland Raiders RB Darren McFadden is expected to be the team's starting tailback with RB Maurice Jones-Drew as his backup.

Brian HartlineApr 20 12:02a

Miami Dolphins WR Brian Hartline (knee) is expected to be ready for the start of mini camp, according to a source. He suffered a torn posterior cruciate ligament in the 2013 regular season finale.

Terrelle PryorApr 19 01:02p

The Oakland Raiders will release QB Terrelle Pryor if they are not able to trade him by Monday, April 21.

LaMichael JamesApr 19 12:22p

The Kansas City Chiefs could consider pursuing San Francisco 49ers RB LaMichael James if he could become a slot receiver. The team likely would not have interest in James [ More ]

Matt HasselbeckApr 19 12:22p

Indianapolis Colts QB Matt Hasselbeck plans to retire after the 2014 season.

Asa JacksonApr 19 12:12p

Baltimore Ravens CBs Chykie Brown and Asa Jackson are expected to compete for the No. 3 cornerback job during training camp. If the team takes a cornerback in one [ More ]

Michael FordApr 19 11:32a

The Chicago Bears probably will select a running back in the later rounds of the 2014 NFL Draft to compete with RB Michael Ford for the No. 2 running [ More ]

Jordan PalmerApr 19 09:52a

The Chicago Bears could target a quarterback in the late rounds of the NFL Draft or in free agency to provide competition for backup QB Jordan Palmer.

Cam NewtonApr 19 09:32a

Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton (ankle) remains in a walking boot about a month after ankle surgery. The team is hopeful Newton will be ready to go for training camp.

Michael RobinsonApr 19 12:02a

The Seattle Seahawks have not tried to re-sign free-agent FB Michael Robinson this offseason.

Russell AllenApr 18 11:42p

The Jacksonville Jaguars released LB Russell Allen (concussion) after he failed a physical.

Kendrick LewisApr 18 08:32p

Houston Texans FS Kendrick Lewis and SS Chris D. Clemons are expected to compete for the starting free safety job during training camp.

Trent RichardsonApr 18 08:22p

Indianapolis Colts head coach Chuck Pagano said it will be important for RB Trent Richardson to participate in all of the offseason workouts so he can get more comfortable [ More ]

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2014 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group