Sunday, April 3, 2022

New York Jets 2022 NFL Mock Draft Roundup 6.0

Throughout the year and leading up to the 2022 NFL Draft, we will update our New York Jets Mock Draft Roundup showing picks for the New York Jets from several prominent sites and draft analysts.

The following are picks in recent mock drafts for the Jets:

SI - Kevin Hanson (4/1)

4. Kayvon Thibodeaux, EDGE, Oregon

The Jets met with Thibodeaux at the combine, and the former top high school recruit felt that meeting went really well. At the combine, he showed an impressive combination of speed (4.58 40-yard dash) and strength (position-high 27 bench press reps). With an ideal frame, explosive first-step quickness and closing burst, double-digit sacks should become the norm for Thibodeaux relatively early in his NFL career.

10. Garrett Wilson, WR, Ohio State

The Jets missed out on Chandler Jones in free agency, and a Tyreek Hill trade was "almost a done deal" before the receiver instead went to the Dolphins. By selecting Thibodeaux and Garrett Wilson in this mock, they address both needs with their first two picks. Wilson is my top-ranked wide receiver prospect, has outstanding body control and is dynamic after the catch. The former Buckeye ran a (slightly) faster-than-expected 40-yard dash (4.38) in Indianapolis and posted a 70/1,058/12 line in 2021.

CBS Sports - Kyle Stackpole (4/1)

4. Kayvon Thibodeaux, EDGE, Oregon

The Jets were in the mix for Chandler Jones before he landed with the Raiders, per CBS Sports NFL insider Josina Anderson, which suggests that GM Joe Douglas is looking to make a big move at pass rusher. And as long as Hutchinson, Walker and Thibodeaux don't go 1-2-3 (in any order), New York will be in position to add a potential game-changer off the edge. In this mock, it's the big and explosive Thibodeaux.

10. Chris Olave, WR, Ohio State

Passing on top cornerback prospect Ahmad Gardner might prove costly, but the Jets covet a No. 1 receiver for Zach Wilson. Heck, they were willing to give up their 35th, 38th and 69th draft picks for Tyreek Hill and a late third-rounder. After Hill chose the Dolphins, New York addresses the position with the silky smooth Olave.

Yahoo! Sports - Eric Edholm (3/31)

4. Ahmad Gardner, CB, Cincinnati

There was a strong temptation to mock the Jets yet another Round 1 offensive lineman (Evan Neal), which would make it three years in a row. But GM Joe Douglas hasn't selected a defensive player higher than 68th in his first two drafts, and head coach Robert Saleh would love a long corner such as Gardner to flavor his defense.

10. Drake London, WR, USC

The Jets want more WR help, having made a strong bid to acquire Tyreek Hill but failed to do so. London is nothing like Hill, although no one is in this draft class, for that matter. But he'd give Zach Wilson a long, reliable weapon on the outside, opposite Corey Davis, with Elijah Moore and Braxton Berrios inside.

Ohio State's Garrett Wilson is another strong option, but he's not a true deep threat and is less physically imposing.

ESPN - Mike Tannenbaum (3/30)

4. Garrett Wilson, WR, Ohio State

The Jets did a nice job in free agency, but they still need a true No. 1 receiver after Tyreek Hill chose Miami over New York in a trade from the Chiefs. Elijah Moore, Corey Davis and Braxton Berrios are a solid trio, but Wilson is a difference-maker. Second-year quarterback Zach Wilson needs that. On 102 targets, Garrett Wilson had only two drops and caught 89.7% of his catchable balls, per ESPN Stats & Information tracking.

10. Jermaine Johnson, EDGE, Florida State

Maybe I'm just trying to make up for trading away John Abraham 16 years ago. But the way I see it, the Jets still lack edge rushing depth even with Carl Lawson set to return from an Achilles injury. Only six teams had fewer sacks than the Jets last season (33), but Johnson had 12 last year at Florida State. He's a physical edge setter, too, and I see him as a more consistent prospect than Georgia's Travon Walker, who might also get some consideration here. I'm pumped if I walk away from Round 1 with Wilson and Johnson. - Bucky Brooks (3/29)

4. Ahmad Gardner, CB, Cincinnati

The long, rangy cover corner with a polished game will remind Jets fans of Antonio Cromartie in his prime.

10. Kyle Hamilton, S, Notre Dame

It is hard to find safeties with both center-fielder skills and a linebacker mentality. Hamilton has superstar potential as a versatile chess piece with the capacity to play anywhere, from the deep middle to the box.

The Draft Network - Brentley Weissman (3/28)

4. Ikem Ekwonu, OT, North Carolina State

The Jets have done well this offseason to address their offensive line with the addition of Laken Tomlinson. His pairing with Alijah Vera-Tucker will make for one of the best guard combos in the league. The team has two good offensive tackles already in Mekhi Becton and George Fant but with some uncertainty around Becton coming off a disappointing year it may make sense to add another young tackle to ensure quarterback Zach Wilson is kept upright.

Icky Ekwonu is a nasty run blocker who plays with excellent power and movement skills. He projects as a long-term solution at left tackle and gives the Jets flexibility to move Becton or Fant for additional assets.

10. Drake London, WR, USC

With the Jets' failed attempt of trading for Tyreek Hill, it's not a secret that they still feel they must add more receiving talent for their young quarterback. London is a big, physical receiver who offers very good overall athleticism and ball skills. His ability to win in contested situations and run after the catch will complement deep threat Elijah Moore very well.

The Athletic - Beat Writer Mock (3/28)

4. Ikem Ekwonu, OT, North Carolina State

Connor Hughes: Joe Douglas is as tight-lipped as they come, but his two biggest swings and misses during free agency foreshadowed what he'd love to do in the NFL Draft. First, the Jets tried to sign Chandler Jones. He chose Las Vegas. Then, Douglas tried to trade for Tyreek Hill. He chose Miami. Read between the lines: The Jets want a pass rusher and receiver. Unfortunately, this draft didn't set up well for the former. Hutchinson, Thibodeaux and Walker all gone before No. 4? Yikes.

The benefit: Ekwonu, arguably the top offensive lineman in the class, is there for the taking. Drafting Ekwonu gives the Jets insurance in case Mekhi Becton's struggles continue -- along with an answer for when George Fant's contract expires after the year.

Brugler: The Jets have drafted an offensive lineman in the first round each of the last two years and could very well make it three in a row in April, especially in this scenario with both Ekwonu and Neal still on the board. Aside from Zach Wilson's development, the greatest unknown variable with the Jets right now is Becton and his long-term fit with the organization. It's not an irreparable relationship, but Ekwonu would bring stability to a Jets offense that is looking to dominate in the trenches. General manager Joe Douglas will look at cornerback Sauce Gardner here, but Ekwonu will be tough to pass up.

10. Garrett Wilson, WR, Ohio State

Hughes: The Jets desperately want another receiver for Zach Wilson. That's why they pursued Calvin Ridley, Amari Cooper and Tyreek Hill. Having missed on all three for various reasons, Joe Douglas has to come away with one in the draft. He has his pick of the litter at No. 10, though this year's class of receivers is nothing like last year's.

Wilson isn't the same caliber player as Ja'Marr Chase (Bengals), Jaylen Waddle (Dolphins) or DeVonta Smith (Eagles). He is, though, a tailor-made fit for Mike LaFleur's offense. He's explosive, agile and electric. He excels after the catch and is an excellent route runner. He'll slide right in with Corey Davis and Elijah Moore in three-wide sets from Day 1.

Brugler: The Jets are going to draft a wide receiver. The question is how early? With no wide receivers drafted in the first nine selections, Joe Douglas has his pick of whoever he wants in a top-heavy receiver class. Wilson's ability to get open before and after the catch makes the playbook come alive and would give the offense an immediate boost. Wilson or Jermaine Johnson would give Douglas plenty to think about here.

PFF - Austin Gayle (3/28)

4. Ikem Ekwonu, OT, North Carolina State

DraftKings' current favorite to be the top offensive lineman selected in April's draft (-120), Ekwonu should be considered a lock to go to the Jets at No. 4 overall if he gets past Houston. The 6-foot-4, 310-pounder is a high-profile athlete with coveted positional versatility and improvement in pass protection teams that should buy into. He was also PFF's highest-graded run-blocking offensive tackle in the FBS last season and consistently finishes blocks to a degree that evaluators will fawn over.

Ekwonu can start right away ahead of George Fant at right tackle and serves as insurance for former first-rounder Mekhi Becton if his battles with injuries persist.

10. Drake London, WR, USC

Going all-in on offense with their two top-10 selections in the 2022 NFL Draft should be the strategy for general manager Joe Douglas and the Jets' front office as they continue to prioritize quarterback Zach Wilson's development. Adding Ekwonu at No. 4 overall and then London at No. 10 chips away at the limitations of Wilson's supporting cast, and London, especially, fills a glaring need for a big-bodied alpha in their receiving corps.

London is also so much more than just a big body. His ball skills and body control combine for excellent play at the catch point, and he is one of the best receivers in the class at creating yards after the catch.

MORE TEAMS: All NFL Team Mock Draft Roundups

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