2019-05-12 12:48:071 Oct 2018 01:53 AM EST
-by Daniel Mogollon, Staff Writer; Image: New York Jets third-round pick USC offensive tackle Chuma Edoga. (Image Source: John McCoy/Getty Images)
The New York Jets had six picks in the 2019 NFL Draft, including two third-round selections. As we take the Jets “Off the Clock,” we’ll breakdown all six of their draft picks, continuing with their second pick of Day 2:
Round 3; Pick 28 (92nd Overall): OT Chuma Edoga, USC
Measurables: The USC blocker is on the smaller side compared to other offensive tackle prospects at 6’4” and 308 pounds but no one would call him undersized. His hands aren’t very big either (9 5/8”), however Edoga has the type of long arms (34 ¾”) needed to keep edge rushers from getting into his body. He ran a very impressive 5.19 40-yard dash at the NFL Scouting Combine, an example of his superb athleticism.
Skill Set: At times, Edoga has flashed a high upside. He’s very mobile which allows him to be effective in pass protection. Edoga gets out of his stance and ready to block quickly with the agility to mirror pass rushers. As a run blocker, he has flashed the ability to play with power, but not consistently. Consistency and a lack of discipline were two of the biggest flaws to his game at USC.
Value: He’s not a clean prospect so maybe he went a round earlier than his performance has warranted but this was the pick New York acquired from the New Orleans Saints, late in the third round so the reach wasn’t a big one.
Need: Yes! The Jets have a need up-and-down their offensive line. Offensive tackles Kelvin Beachum and Brandon Shell are adequate at best. Moreover, they are both entering the final year of their contracts and are scheduled to be unrestricted free agents at the end of 2019. The play on the interior of the O-line was even more problematic last season. Kelechi Osemele was brought over via a trade, but he’s coming off a down year, is turning 30 before the season starts, and has just two years left on his contract, while the Jets have a potential out with Brian Winters after this season with no dead money.
Mogollon’s Pick: Like Mike Maccagnan, I was thinking offensive tackle, but was leaning towards West Virginia’s Yodny Cajuste who went nine picks later. Like Chase Winovich earlier in the third round, I’d go with a player selected by the New England Patriots.
Who Else Did They Pass Up? Yet another option at offensive tackle was Oklahoma’s Bobby Evans who the Los Angeles Rams drafted with the 97th pick. Cornerbacks Jamel Dean (No. 94) out of Auburn, Notre Dame’s Julian Love (No. 108), and Kendall Sheffield (No. 111) from Ohio State would have all been welcomed additions to the secondary.
The Fit: His familiarity with zone blocking schemes at USC should make Edoga a good for New York’s offensive attack. The Trojan has the tools—long arms, great feet, quickness, and smarts—to handle the duties as Sam Darnold’s blindside protector. You could also envision Edoga using his mobility to get out in space and help Le’Veon Bell break free for a big gain after the catch as the Jets look to incorporate their running backs more in the throw game.
2019 Outlook & Beyond: A bit of a boom or bust prospect, Edoga needs some refining. Some on the field, some off it. He will take on a backup role in 2019, likely at tackle, behind starters Kelvin Beachum and Brandon Shell. While he started at right tackle for the Trojans, Edoga impressed with his ability to play left tackle during Senior Bowl week. In Beachum he has a similarly-built blocker who can help teach him technique. More importantly, the Man of Troy needs to learn how to be a pro. While he’s very bright, Edoga brings the reputation of having a bad attitude and less-than-stellar work ethic. That has to change. If playing tackle is too overwhelming it’s possible he could move inside to guard down the road.
Daniel Mogollon is a member of the Pro Football Writers of America and the Football Writers Association of America. He is also a voter for the Thorpe and the Rotary Lombardi Award, as well as the Latino Sports MVP Awards. You can reach him via email: email@example.com.
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