Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Should the New York Jets Draft Eli Harold in the Second Round?

Photo credit: 247sports
For years, the Jets have masked their lack of elite edge-rushing talent with Rex Ryan's exotic blitz packages. When the team had cornerbacks like Darrelle Revis and Antonio Cromartie locking down receivers on the outside, that was an easy task. Even with New York's issues at cornerback last season, the Jets still finished sixth in the league with 45 sacks. Defensive end Sheldon Richardson was the lone Jets defender to eclipse the seven-sack plateau. However, five Jets had at least five sacks on the season.

Those numbers imply that the Jets successfully pressured opposing quarterbacks with schemed blitzes rather than supremely talented edge rushers, and the 11.5 combined sacks from starting outside linebackers Quinton Coples (6.5) and Calvin Pace (5.0) confirms that fact.

The Jets' need for a legitimate edge rusher is real, and this year's draft is especially deep at the position. As a result, the Jets have a good chance at grabbing an impact player at the position with the 38th overall pick. One intriguing name in this year's edge class is Virginia's Eli Harold. A 6-4, 250-pound junior who declared for the draft after just three seasons with the Cavaliers, Harold has the potential to become a complete pass rusher at the NFL level.

Read the rest at Pro Football Spot

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