The New York Jets have received a ton of lofty praise coming off of the first night of the 2021 NFL Draft.
Although the biggest supporter of Gang Green came from the ESPN mothership. Shortly after the first night concluded NFL Draft analyst Todd McShay joined Scott Van Pelt on SportsCenter and shared one of his favorite picks of the night:
“I loved the Jets being able to trade back up for Alijah Vera-Tucker out of USC. I talked to Joe Douglas earlier in the week and he said we have to do what we didn’t do for Sam Darnold. We’ve got to protect Zach Wilson. The Jets landed one of the premier offensive linemen and I think Vera-Tucker could be a Pro Bowler. I knew he was the guy they wanted, but I wasn’t sure they were going to get high enough.”
— Paul Andrew Esden Jr (@BoyGreen25) April 30, 2021
McShay wasn’t the only one loving what he saw from the green and white on night one. Here are a few other sites with some of their thoughts and grades for the Jets:
- The Jets received separate A grades for both the Zach Wilson and Alijah Vera-Tucker selections!
- Gang Green got a B+ grade
“AVT should be a very strong starting guard who will bully defensive tackles in the run game and serve as a solid pass protector. I had to mark this trade down a bit, though, because giving up two third-round selections, even though they’re receiving a fourth-rounder in return, was a bit much.”
The New York Jets got docked a bit for trading up for a guard and giving up that much. To anyone that has that take? I’m fine with it. No one understands more than the fans that this team needed to bolster everything in the trenches.
Did they overpay? Maybe, but who cares? The Jets got arguably the third-best overall offensive lineman and the best interior player on the board. That’s a major win.
General manager Joe Douglas promised he would build this thing through the NFL Draft and he would invest in the trenches.
In two drafts, he’s drafted as many offensive linemen in the first round as the entire organization has from 2000-2019 (great nugget via Joe Caporoso).
What about Zach Wilson?
Almost the forgotten man in all of this because we’ve just felt for so long that he was going to be the guy. So when Wilson was actually drafted it was like pass the biscuits, of course, he’s the pick.
Both Wilson and the Jets simultaneously made history with him being the second overall draft choice.
Zach Wilson became the highest drafted player in BYU Football history. While the Jets became the first team in the modern NFL Draft era to select two quarterbacks in the top three within a four-year span.
The other thing to love about day one for the Jets is you get your franchise quarterback in Wilson. Then you immediately make a move to protect him by trading up into the top-15.
Just for that mentality Jets general manager Joe Douglas deserves an insane amount of praise. He didn’t just talk the talk, he walked the walk.