Jets General manager Mike Maccagnan has balanced his strategy between winning now and building for the future.
But again, offensive line was not a top priority for the team.
Even though Maccagnan has made big free-agent signings (Darrelle Revis, Matt Forte) in his recent past, the Hackenberg pick proves this front office doesn’t believe this team is ready for the post season. Their starter at quarterback remains unsigned, Ferguson retired and no one knows if Ryan Clady will be healthy enough to plug and play.
The Offensive line is a year older, short on effective depth, playing a tougher schedule and as we said before, the quarterback position is uncertain.
Wild free agent spending on mediocre quarterbacks has put both the Jets and Ryan Fitzpatrick in an embarrassing situation with a tight wallet making this all the more complicated.
If the Jets felt secure they wouldn’t have spent a second-round pick on a quarterback and they’d be willing to devote more money to Fitzpatrick’s contract. Remember Fitzpatrick was able to get throws off under pressure, pressure that’s only going to be tougher this season. You don’t throw a rookie into this mix.
Maccagnan has a best-player-available draft philosophy, and at No. 51, Hackenberg was in the highest-rated group still on the Jets draft board—a prospect whom the decision-makers viewed, for all his flaws, as a solid kid with a high ceiling after having worked him out in April.
Maccagnan has stated that going into the season with four quarterbacks on the roster is “not unheard of” and therefore a possibility. He also stated that Hackenberg would be number three going into the season – at this point.
The team wasn’t locked in at the quarterback position with their second-round choice, but of those players rated highest on their board, Hackenberg had the most potential.
“There is a learning curve,” Bowles said. We knew he wasn’t going to come in and start right away”.
“We picked the best player at the spot and it just happened to be a quarterback.” – Todd Bowles
Chan Gailey will be charged with helping Hackenberg reach his “high ceiling’ and Bill O’Brien(whom Hackenberg had his best season under) thinks he’s in good hands to do that.
“It’s a great spot for him,” O’Brien says. “I coached for Gailey one year at Georgia Tech, and that’s a perfect coach for him to learn from. Chan’s a very patient guy. Good teacher.”
The New York Jets drafted their ninth quarterback in the past 11 years, a league-high and their fourth for a fourth straight year.
With the linebacker situation improved, the defensive line in place, a pick at the cornerback spot, perhaps 2017 will be the year of the offensive line.
2006 seems so far away doesn’t it? and yet that was the last year the Jets made first round picks for their offensive line.