Jets muddle quarterback picture
The New York Jets Saturday tossed a grenade that will have a dramatic effect on how the top of the 2018 National Football League college draft unfolds next month.
The Jets, one of several teams hungry for a quarterback, moved up three spots in the draft order to No. 3, swapping places with the Indianapolis Colts in addition to parting with three second-round picks, one next year.
The move definitely affects how the Browns General Manager John Dorsey and his staff approach the draft and has already triggered another round of plausible possibilities.
In what way, if at all, will this change Dorsey’s thinking as he approaches the final days leading up to the draft? Right now, it’s too early to be thinking that far ahead. But it certainly has to give him pause as he methodically maps out the course he seeks to take his new club.
He now knows the two New York teams situated between the Browns’ top pick and their fourth selection are candidates to select a quarterback. The Colts would have opted for a non-quarterback.
The Jets undoubtedly will select a quarterback even though they recently signed Josh McCown and Teddy Bridgewater in free agency. Giving up that much to the Colts and then not taking one makes no sense.
The Giants, on the other hand, can move in either of two directions. They can take Eli Manning’s successor and groom him for a couple of years. Or they can wait and select his successor down the road and instead take running back Saquon Barkley.
The first scenario would force Dorsey to take a quarterback even though that player might not be on top of his board. If that player is Barkley, the second scenario forces him to take the Penn State running back first, believing he won’t be there at four. He has to be lucky and guess correctly.
Then again, the Giants could surprise and also take a quarterback even if the Browns choose one with the first selection. This is a draft where you only think you know what is going to eventuate at the top.
It’s either that for Dorsey or remove all doubt and work a deal with the Giants, thereby ending up with the first two picks. That, of course, would come at a heavy price and is a long shot at best.
Right now with the Jets firmly in the picture, it becomes a guessing game and evaluation of the talent at the quarterback position could very well determine how it all comes down on April 26.
It is said that one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. Sam Darnold, for example, might be ranked fourth on one team’s list and on top of another team’s board. Same with Baker Mayfield, Josh Rosen and Josh Allen. It is all in the eye of the beholder.
Another distinct possibility is the Giants trading down and muddling the situation all over again. The Denver Broncos, sitting at five, is another team with a quarterback in its crosshairs even though they signed Case Keenum.
If that happens, all bets are off and we start all over again speculating on the seemingly never-ending possibilities.