They always say that patience is a great virtue to have in life. It’s definitely something New York Jets general manager John Idzik believes in based on his decisions in the 2014 NFL Draft. With twelve overall picks, one would think the Jets would have utilized some of them to trade up in the draft to pick whomever they truly wanted. Known for his calm, cool style of running things, Idzik made sure the Jets weren’t involved in any crazy trades in fear of losing his prized compensation draft picks.
Being one of only seven teams to not make a single trade, the Jets decided to stick with the draft strategy and select the best possible players available with each pick. When you look at things overall, they spread even between offense and defense with six picks going to each side of the football. The Jets have addressed issues with offense by drafting some good receivers and a stud tight end in Jace Amaro. On defense, they finally added some youth into the secondary with young stars in Calvin Pryor and Dexter McDougle. They’ve also added solid depth for the team in case injuries occur or they need players to step in when called upon.
Of course when one looks at all the selections the Jets made, it all comes back to one burning question.
The Jets could have easily packaged a few draft picks to move up to grab some true star talent. One wonders if they could have done something of that nature to draft someone like Odell Beckham Jr. or even Mike Evans and truly be a team to contend with. The NFL has truly developed into a passing league, and if you want to succeed, you must have some incredibly good targets to throw to. Great wide receivers make a big difference between winning and losing, make no mistake about it.
Hopefully Idzik’s lack of aggression in the Jets’ draft room doesn’t come back to haunt him. If you look at the other teams in the AFC East, the Buffalo Bills easily made the biggest splash by drafting WR Sammy Watkins. Considered the best receiver in the entire draft, Watkins will end up being the kind of player who will instantly boost his team and efficiency on offense upon arrival.
At the end of the day, most would prefer having a few superstars who are ready to step in rather than a bunch of players still trying to find themselves athletically. The best talent is always found in the first three rounds of the draft anyway as everything else is really just for depth purposes. Regardless, Idzik will learn over time that sometimes you have to let go of old ways to break into new territory.
One should always understand that you need to take a few risks along the way for it to all come together. Hopefully in Idzik’s case, his risk-free approach pays off this season.