After really disagreeing with John B from Gang Green Nation about the selection of Knowshon Moreno in round one, I might just do the same here.
Without counting long snapper James Dearth, who has not played the position in years, the Jets have exactly one tight end on their active roster, 2008 first round pick Dustin Keller. Releasing Chris Baker appears to be a mistake. He was an excellent blocker and had a breakthrough 2007. Baker’s production may have dropped in 2008, but that was not due to anything he did wrong. His opportunities decreased as Keller emerged into one of Brett Favre’s favorite targets. The move only saved $2 million in cap space. Adding injury to insult, Baker signed with the hated Patriots after New York released him.
The Jets need to add a tight end. Specifically, they need a blocking tight end. Keller looks like he could be a special player. His speed and athleticism present matchup problems for most linebackers and safeties. However, he is undersized and struggles as a blocker. With that in mind, I am taking Cook, a guy who might be an even bigger blocking liability.
Why? Because he has the same strengths as Keller. He is fast and athletic, just as difficult of a matchup for linebackers and safeties. He exploits seams and identifies holes in zone coverage. If few teams have the personnel to successfully defend Keller alone, even fewer will be able to defend both Cook and Keller in multi-tight end sets. Offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer loves unconventional approaches to create mismatches. He would sign up for Cook in a heartbeat.
Cook also fills needs on the roster. The Jets are looking for a vertical threat. Cook has elite speed for a tight end and gain separation on deep routes. While his Combine time was 4.50, he is believed to have run in the high 4.3’s to low 4.4’s in the past. When he kicks it into high gear, defensive backs have a tough time running with him. The Jets have also lacked a big red zone target since trading Keyshawn Johnson nine years ago. Cook is 6’5" with a 41" vertical leap. This means no more fades to receivers under 6’0" tall as the Jets have run far too often for years.
MTD thoughts: I hate to disagree again with the pick here, but I need to.There is some depth at tight end, and a good blocker like Bear Pascoe could be found in the later rounds. While I like adding some firepower on offense, I really think this pick should have been Josh Freeman.
Mocking the Draft's Top Five Remaining Prospects - QB Josh Freeman, CB Alphonso Smith, RB Shonn Greene, TE Chase Coffman, CB D.J. Moore