Draft Options: Wide Receiver

With the New York Jets currently enduring an overhaul both in the coaching staff and front office, a new mindset will be established and one of the first key tests will be their approach at the draft. New York Sports Hub analyzes the Jets options at the wide receiver position. 

Amari Cooper

Cooper is one of those college prospects that coming into the draft, there is little uncertainty about whether or not he will find success at the next level. Many say he lacks that “wow” factor you see in the most electrifying athletes like Sammy Watkins, Odell Beckham Jr., or DeSean Jackson, and he certainly doesn’t have the size of Mike Evans, Kelvan Benjamin, or Vincent Jackson.

While this is true, Amari Cooper is one of the most complete players coming into the 2015 draft. He makes the touch catches at ease, gets open like he isn’t being defended, and does, in fact, have the ability to make plays. The knock on Cooper is his inconsistency in making routine catches, as he drops the ball way more than he should. He is also undisciplined in route running, but because he is so effective at doing things his own way, he gets away with it.

Cooper is the only receiver the Jets should consider taking in the first round sixth overall.

Kevin White

White is a beast with not much holding him back. While he has excellent size at 6’3”, he displays magnificent ability to jump, and with his trusty hands, catch any contested ball you put near him. He is a very good route runner, and when he has the ball, he is like a punishing running back. He doesn’t make big plays with speed and agility, but he uses his size and vision to pick up extra yardage.

One of the best things about White is that he can be running in stride, catch the ball, and stay in stride. That is extremely difficult for most receivers and given his lack of speed, he can make up for it a bit with that. The only problem with White is he is pretty slow, as stated before.

While he has run an unofficial 4.38 second 40-yard dash before, he averages around 4.50-seconds per try. His size, talent, body control, and hands make him a great option for any team to draft. The Jets can use this kind of athleticism, size, and skill, and should consider taking White only if they trade down in the first round.

Jaelen Strong

Jaelen Strong, like Kevin White, is a strong, big-bodied receiver with very reliable hands. Strong also has amazing jumping ability, but often doesn’t fully extend his arms and get over his defender as much as he should at his tall height 6’3”. He is extremely quick and agile, but not quite as fast as the ideal wide receiver.

He is a raw prospect, however, and lacks good route running ability. That can be taught in the NFL, though. Strong plays football like one would play basketball, posting up on cornerbacks and whatnot. This would make him a great tight end if he bulked up a little. Also like a tight end, he is a strong blocker, but he gets called for holding too often. Jaelen Strong is no tight end and has the potential to be a top receiver in the NFL.

If he is on the board when the Jets are on the clock in the second round, they should really consider taking him.

Ty Montgomery

Ty Montgomery has excellent size, at 6’2” 220 pounds, and he uses it to his advantage. He didn’t display great skill in his college years at Stanford, but his size and strength really came in handy. His most productive season was his junior year, in which he racked up 10 receiving touchdowns, a couple rushing touchdowns, and another pair of kick return touchdowns.

Montgomery is very fast and extremely quick and displays great vision after the catch. This is what is most underrated about him, although scouts believe he will be very successful as a kick return specialist in the NFL. Montgomery is not a very good route runner and has questionable hands. To be successful as a wide receiver at the next level, he will need to improve on those attributes.

The Jets can use a receiver with the “wow” factor and if he is available to them in the third or fourth round, they should definitely pick him.

Josh Harper

Josh Harper is a possession receiver with one of the best set of hands and body control in this year’s draft class. His quickness is remarkable and his speed is excellent. He is the most underrated receiver in the 2015 draft.

Harper will produce in the NFL, for sure, as he is one of the most complete prospects NFL teams can draft this year. In the last two seasons, he has had over 2,000 receiving yards, with 20 touchdowns! His consistency is an indicator that he is indeed NFL-ready. Harper played all four years in college, getting all the experience he can get before me makes the leap to the big leagues. His only flaw is his route running.

While he was good at it at the collegiate level, his eccentric style of route running just wont cut it in the pros. He will be able to make the necessary adjustments in the NFL. Harper has good size, with a small frame at 6’1” 185 pounds. He can be used on the outside or in the slot.

If he is available for the Jets to draft in the second or third round, Harper is the ideal choice to be the wide receiver of the future.

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