New York Jets defensive end Leonard Williams (92) on the field after the Jets' win. The New York Jets host the Indianapolis Colts in Week 6 on Sunday, Oct. 14, 2018, in East Rutherford. (Photo: Danielle Parhizkaran/NorthJersey.com)
First round: DE Leonard Williams (sixth overall)
Second round: WR Devin Smith (37th)
Third round: OLB Lorenzo Mauldin (82nd)
Fourth round: QB Bryce Petty (103rd)
Fifth round: G Jarvis Harrison (152nd)
Seventh round: NT Deon Simon (223rd)
Analysis: Williams has turned into a very good player, but has yet to become the superstar the Jets were hoping for when they picked him that high. Bryce Petty is the only other player in this draft class to play an NFL snap after 2016. To have only one player in the league less than four years after a draft is … bad. Williams is the only thing that saves this class from total disaster.
Sep 10, 2018; Detroit, MI, USA; New York Jets linebacker Darron Lee (58) celebrates his touchdown during the third quarter against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports (Photo: Tim Fuller, Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports)
First round: LB Darron Lee (20th)
Second round: QB Christian Hackenberg (51st)
Third round: OLB Jordan Jenkins (83rd)
Fourth round: CB Juston Burris (118th)
Fifth round: T Brandon Shell (158th)
Seventh round: P Lachlan Edwards (235th overall) and WR Charone Peake (241st)
Analysis: It took until Year 3, but Lee has turned into one of the better players on the defense. The Hackenberg pick was a disaster. He never played a snap for the Jets and will probably never play in the league. Jenkins has been a solid starter since his rookie year. Burris has struggled (the Jets cut him and put him on their practice squad last week), but Maccagnan got good value at the bottom of the draft: Shell is a competent starter, Edwards is one of the better punters in the league and Peake is a key special teams contributor. The best move of the draft came after it, when Maccagnan signed undrafted free agent receiver Robby Anderson who has turned into the team’s most dangerous offensive weapon.
New York Jets safety Jamal Adams (33) celebrates a turnover in the second half. The New York Jets host the Indianapolis Colts in Week 6 on Sunday, Oct. 14, 2018, in East Rutherford. (Photo: Danielle Parhizkaran/NorthJersey.com)
First round: S Jamal Adams (6th)
Second round: S Marcus Maye (39th)
Third round: WR ArDarius Stewart (79th)
Fourth round: WR Chad Hansen (141st)
Fifth round: TE Jordan Leggett (150th), OLB Dylan Donahue (181st)
Sixth round: RB Eli Mcguire (188th), CB Jeremy Clark (197th), CB Derrick Jones (204th)
Analysis: With two picks, Maccagnan transformed the defense perhaps for years to come. Midway through his second season, Adams is likely the best player on the defense. Maye was a ready-made starter as a rookie and has continued to impress, despite injury concerns, in year two. But outside of Adams and Maye, four of the other seven players drafted are already gone less than 18 months later. The mid-round whiffs on Stewart and Hansen are particularly painful, given the Jets’ current lack of depth at receiver. Donahue and Clark are gone, too. Leggett and Jones remain, but have yet to contribute. McGuire has the chance to be a sixth-round steal, but it will depend on how he looks after missing the first half of the season with an injury.
New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (14) talks with wide receiver Jermaine Kearse, left, during the second half. The Jets defeat the Indianapolis Colts 42-34 in Week 6 on Sunday, Oct. 14, 2018, in East Rutherford. (Photo: Danielle Parhizkaran/NorthJersey.com)
First round: QB Sam Darnold (3rd)
Third round: DT Nathan Shepherd (72nd)
Fourth round: TE Chris Herndon (107th)
Sixth round: CB Parry Nickerson (179th), DT Folorunso Fatukasi (180th), RB Trenton Cannon (204th)
Analysis: It’s still way too early to know exactly what the Jets have, here. But this draft class is off to a promising start. Darnold was the Day One starter and could be the franchise quarterback the Jets have long been seeking. Years from now, this draft will be judged solely on him. But four of the other five players drafted have made an impact as rookies. Shepherd is a defensive line starter, Herndon is the best pass catching tight end on the team (he has three touchdowns already), Nickerson and Cannon have filled in capably during injury problems. It’s still way too early to properly evaluate this class, but it’s on track to be Maccagnan’s best yet.
Overall: Maccagnan has done a nice job with the first-round picks, there’s no denying that. The mistakes in the middle rounds have been painful and costly. But he made a bold move to trade up and land Darnold this spring. And if Darnold turns into a star, he’s shown a lot of early promise, the other mistakes will be forgotten and forgiven.
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