NFL Draft Round 2: Star running backs could create Jets’ dilemma

The Jets filled a big hole with a big man in Round 1 of the NFL Draft 2020 by selecting Louisville tackle Mekhi Becton.

Now, GM Joe Douglas has more work to do.

There are many ways the Jets can go in Round 2 with the No. 48 overall pick. The obvious choice is wide receiver, but there are other needs where a player might be ranked higher on the Jets’ board than receiver.

While there are a lot of good wide receivers still available, there could be a run on them early in the second round. The Jets have the 16th pick in the round because teams with the same record are grouped in the draft, ranked by strength of schedule with the weakest team getting the top pick in the first round but then getting the last pick of that group in the second round. That is the Jets. The order then reverses again in the third round.

Is there a wide receiver the Jets covet that they would trade up for? Baylor’s Denzel Mims is the top receiver available, according to the draft gurus. It would be hard for me to see Douglas trading up. I think he’d love to trade down at some point and get more picks. Maybe he does that in the second round. It feels like there is a large group of similar players now available. You only make a move if there is someone you have graded way above the others.

• Jets’ NFL Draft tracker: Live round-by-round picks and analysis

Here are some possible directions the Jets could go in next:

Wide Receiver

Laviska Shenault Jr., Colorado

A core muscle injury that kept Shenault from doing much in the pre-draft process pushes him down the board. There are durability concerns, but he could be a great value pick.

Michael Pittman Jr., USC

He is a big receiver at 6-foot-4 who is a strong route runner and can be physical. He played with Sam Darnold at USC, so there is some familiarity there.

KJ Hamler, Penn State

Hamler is an explosive athlete but there are concerns about drops (12 in 2019) and his size at 5-8, 178 pounds.


Jaylon Johnson, Utah

He was a second-team All-American for the Utes last year and could fill a huge need for the Jets. They have done a lot of work on Johnson, who some saw as a first-round pick. If he is available at 48, the Jets might pounce.

Amik Robertson, Louisiana Tech

He had 14 career interceptions in college. He is small at 5-8, 187 pounds but he is tough and instinctual.

Cameron Dantzler, Mississippi State

He was a high school quarterback who rarely played defense, so he is still learning the position. He is athletic and long and could thrive with NFL coaching.


Yetur Gross-Matos, Penn State

He was thought of as a possible late first-round pick. He had 19 sacks in three seasons for the Nittany Lions. He will probably be gone by pick 48, but you never know.

A.J. Epenesa, Iowa

Another player who should be gone by the time Jets pick. He had 26 ½ sacks for the Hawkeyes over three years. He is not a speed rusher, but wins with power.

Josh Uche, Michigan

He is an athletic player who will probably need some time to develop in the NFL. He had 16 ½ sacks for the Wolverines in four years.

Running back

With only one running back taken in the first round, the Jets are going to have a shot at some good running backs if they want to go that way. Dobbins was thought of as a first-round player. He rushed for more than 2,000 yards last year for the Buckeyes. The Jets have bigger needs, but can they pass if a top running back falls to them?

D’Andre Swift, Georgia

Same thing as Dobbins. Swift is one of the best backs in the draft. If he somehow drops to the Jets, they are going to have a decision to make. He is a dynamic back who can catch passes out of the backfield.

Jonathan Taylor, Wisconsin

Taylor is not as complete a back as Dobbins or Swift but was highly productive for the Badgers. He rushed for 2,000 yards in back-to-back seasons.

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