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APC Community Mock Draft: Jets are on the clock at No. 4

The Texans selected the first offensive player in the draft, picking Evan Neal out of Alabama. The Jets are now on the clock with the 4th pick.

NCAA Football: Charleston Southern at Georgia Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

The Jets are up next in the APC community mock draft. With two top ten picks and a few good signings in the off-season, they’ve provided themselves versatility in this spot. Their biggest addition in free agency was adding Laken Tomlinson to shore up their right guard spot. Coming from San Francisco, Tomlinson will bring a familiarity with the Jets’ scheme and serve as a solid starter. Elsewhere, New York addressed the back end of their defense by signing D.J Reed and Jordan Whitehead. Reed and Bryce Hall will form a solid tandem at corner, but Robert Saleh is surely thinking about what a stud corner with size like Ahmad “Sauce” Gardner could do to elevate that unit.

The Jets could also look to upgrade at tackle and pick Ikem Ekwonu, as their right tackle George Fant is on an expiring deal, and questions have arisen around Mekhi Becton’s long-term fit with the team. Finally, GM Joe Douglas made no secret about wanting a pass rusher this off-season, as he aggressively pursued Chandler Jones before the stud edge rusher chose the Raiders. This puts an edge like Travon Walker firmly in the lead to be the pick here as he could be the most athletically gifted pass rusher in the draft. Read on for a quick breakdown of each prospect and then cast your vote below.

Travon Walker, Edge, Georgia

Of this draft’s top 3 edge rushers, Travon Walker may be the freakiest. Posting a 9.99 RAS, Walker is a one-year starter who was a pivotal part of Georgia’s ferocious defense last season, posting 7.5 TFL and 6 sacks. He can play just about anywhere on the line due to his rare athleticism at 272 pounds and is solid against the run. Walker will need to develop his secondary rush moves at the next level, but the focus on one position in the league should help there. The Jets were in hot pursuit of Chandler Jones in free agency, and Walker would give them the dominant edge they desire.

Ikem Ekwonu, OT, NC State

The Jets have all their eggs in Zach Wilson’s basket right now, and to get the most out of him, they have to be sure of what they have at tackle. Mekhi Becton has shown flashes of brilliance but after a disappointing 2021 season, the Jets may not be confident in Becton as their left tackle of the future. Ekwonu is the next best tackle with Evan Neal off the board, and he can start at either guard or tackle on day 1. Although his frame would suggest a move to guard, where he played some in 2020, his potential as a pass blocker gives him the chance to be a very good anchor for many years. While this would be the third year in a row that Joe Douglas has selected an offensive lineman in the first round, Ekwonu’s play strength and reputation as a nasty finisher would fit in perfectly with the identity that Robert Saleh wants to establish.

Ahmad Gardner, CB, Cincinnati

Going off his first two drafts, picking Gardner here would be unusual for GM Joe Douglas. He has not selected a defensive player higher than round 3 during his tenure. However, Gardner presents a unique opportunity. At 6’3”, 190 lbs., he is excellent at using his length to jam receivers at the line and shut down a play before it begins. The Jets run a zone-heavy scheme, and Gardner should have no issues fitting in. His vision and ball skills would give the Jets a premium playmaker in the backfield and accomplish their off-season goal of fixing their porous pass defense.


Who will the Jets select at no. 4?

This poll is closed

  • 37%
    Travon Walker, EDGE, Georgia
    (89 votes)
  • 33%
    Ikem Ekwonu, OT, NC State
    (81 votes)
  • 29%
    Ahmad Gardner, CB, Cincinnati
    (70 votes)
240 votes total Vote Now

That’s all for the 4th pick. Be sure to vote here and on Twitter (@acmepackingco)! Check back later today as we look at who the Giants and Panthers will select at the 5th and 6th picks, respectively.