It is no secret who will go No. 1 in the 2021 NFL Draft: Trevor Lawrence. But when it comes to the No. 2 pick, it is not nearly as clear. Leading up to the Draft, the question of the day is not who is going to go No. 1 but who will go No. 2.
Popular opinion has the New York Jets going with a quarterback. But they might decide to stick with Sam Darnold and build around him (finally). If that is the case, the discussion is wide open on who will go No. 2.
But what if they make a trade for Deshaun Watson? Such a move would likely include the No. 2 pick, and the Texans will need a quarterback. Rumor has it that the Philadelphia Eagles may be interested in trading up, too. Are they sold on Jalen Hurts, or will they look for a quarterback?
It may seem logical who it should be for those not making the decision. But we are talking about a decision that could impact the immediate future of a franchise—for the good or bad.
So—who is going to go No. 2 in the Draft? Oddsmakers seem to have settled on the same guy:
|2021 NFL Draft: Second Overall Pick||DraftKings||BetRivers||William Hill|
What Are The New York Jets Going To Do?
After a dismal 2020 season, the Jets find themselves with the No. 2 pick in the Draft. With it, they can pick a player that should make an immediate impact on the team. If they pick the right guy, he might even set the franchise on a path out of the AFC East cellar.
But it has to be more than just the right guy. They must take the right guy in the right position.
To many, the decision should be an easy one—take a quarterback. Sam Darold has shown flashes of promise in his three seasons, but ‘flashes’ are not enough. Rather than waste another season on him, many think it is time for the Jets to cut him loose and start over.
Since they have a new head coach and offensive coordinator heading into the 2021 season, the timing for such a move is right. However, a good case could also be made for holding onto Darnold.
— The Checkdown (@thecheckdown) February 19, 2021
The Jets have done next to nothing to help him the last three years. His best offensive line was the one he had during his rookie season, and it was only ranked 25th (by PFF). Last year’s group ranked 29th, and the year before, it ranked 28th.
As for his wide receivers, that group has gone from bad to worse. During his rookie season, the Jets receivers ranked 28th in the league (according to PFF). In 2019 they were ranked 29th, and last season they dropped down to 31st.
While the team did try to get him some help in the backfield in Le’Veon Bell, that move ended up being a bust.
So, should the Jets decide to stick with Darnold, they could go after an offensive lineman, wide receiver, or running back. At the same time, they have defensive needs as well. With a defensive-minded head coach in charge, they could go for help in the secondary or the pass rush.
What If The Jets Trade The No. 2 Pick Or Sam Darnold?
If the Jets decide to hold onto Darnold, they will not go with a quarterback at No. 2. Doing so would deflate the potential trade value of Darnold and almost guarantee they do get much (if anything) for the former No. 3 pick.
But if they trade Darnold or the No. 2 pick, then a quarterback is practically a lock to go second in the Draft. The Jets will need to take someone if they ditch Darnold and keep the pick (assuming they do not trade for a quarterback).
Whoever trades up (i.e., the Houston Texans, Philadelphia Eagles, etc.), with the price they will have to pay to get the No. 2 pick, will be looking to take their next franchise quarterback.
With Trevor Lawrence expected to go with the first pick, the question is not just who will go with the second pick but who will be the second quarterback taken:
|2021 NFL Draft: Second Quarterback Drafted||PointsBet||FOX Bet|
And The Second Overall Pick Of The 2021 NFL Draft Is…
Rumor has it that Jets General Manager Joe Douglass is considering holding onto Darnold and trading the No. 2 pick to stockpile draft picks. With the caliber of quarterbacks coming out in the Draft and the number of teams in dire need of one, he could get quite the haul for the No. 2 pick.
But with six picks inside the first 98 of the Draft this year, there is a good chance they could build around Darnold without trading down. So, why not keep the pick and select a game-changer like Penei Sewell?
Assuming he lives up to the hype, he is the kind of player you could build an offensive line around.
Some would say they should get a playmaker and go for DeVonta Smith, Ja’Marr Chase, or Jaylen Waddle. But after going with Denzel Mims in the second-round last year and signing two former first-round receivers (Josh Doctson and Breshad Perriman), the offensive line may need more help.
However, if they trade the pick or Darnold, we are likely looking at a quarterback going second. There will be some good ones available after the Jaguars take Trevor Lawrence. But with the buzz surrounding the top two prospects, Zach Wilson and Justin Fields, it sounds like Wilson is the safe bet.
While Fields may beat out Wilson from a physical and arm-strength standpoint, there are growing concerns over how well he can read the field. But while Wilson may appear to read the field faster, the level of competition he saw pales in comparison to what Fields has faced.
So, if the Jets keep the pick and Darnold, look for Penei Sewell to be the second overall pick. But if they get rid of Darnold or the pick, it will probably be a quarterback—Zach Wilson.