Buzz about the Jets‘ first-round decision has pointed to a tackle-or-wide receiver dilemma. While the former scenario thus far has been the predicted route GM Joe Douglas will take in his first Jets draft, the team is high on Henry Ruggs, Ralph Vacchiano of SNY notes (video link). The Jets have eyed Ruggs throughout the pre-draft process. Smokescreens are common at this time, but it might not make much sense in this case. The Jets may not be able to afford to trade down from No. 11 overall, considering the draft’s top four tackles may all be gone by the middle of the first round.
Should Gang Green opt for a wide receiver, Ruggs has generally rated behind former Alabama teammate Jerry Jeudy and Oklahoma standout CeeDee Lamb in mock drafts. The Jets are believe to be Lamb fans as well. The 5-foot-11 Ruggs, however, has both easily beat in the speed department. The Jets recently signed deep threat Breshad Perriman to replace Robby Anderson and have slot cog Jamison Crowder under contract.
Here is the latest from the league’s wide receiver landscape:
- On the subject of Ruggs, the Cowboys recently went through a video conference with the first-round talent, Clarence Hill of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram tweets. Perhaps as an indication of the board the Cowboys expect to see when they pick at No. 17, Hill adds the team has not spoken with Lamb yet (Twitter link). It would certainly be interesting to see the Cowboys choose a wideout in Round 1, considering they just authorized a $20MM-per-year Amari Cooper pact.
- One of this draft’s many receivers who figure to be off the board by the time the third round begins, Denzel Mims produced two 1,000-yard seasons while at Baylor. However, the 6-3 standout struggled with drops with the Bears. Mims played with a broken hand last season, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets, adding that he has discussed this issue with teams. With the NCAA not forcing teams to provide injury reports, players’ maladies can slip under radars far easier than they can in the NFL. After blazing to a 4.38-second 40-yard dash at the Combine, Mims will likely not have to wait too long Friday night — if indeed he escapes Round 1.
- The Cardinals now have Larry Fitzgerald, DeAndre Hopkins and recent second-round picks Christian Kirk and Andy Isabella on their team. Kyler Murray has also lobbied for the team to draft Lamb — his college teammate — at No. 8 overall. It would be a surprise to see Arizona devote a high pick to a wideout this year, but Steve Keim did not rule out such a move. “You want to look at the long-term contracts you have in place, whether guys can play inside or outside,” Keim said. “If there is a player at the right spot, someone we are high on, we will certainly take advantage of that. Just because it seems on the surface we’re not as needy at wide receiver, that could change pretty quickly.”