Jets likely to target stretch-the-field WR

Posted April 21, 2012 @ 8:05 p.m.
Posted By Kevin Fishbain

Among the Jets’ needs heading into next week’s draft is receiver. They added Chaz Schilens in free agency but still lack depth at the position. It isn’t necessary to have 4-5 stud wideouts in Tony Sparano’s offense, but after Schilens, Santonio Holmes and Jeremy Kerley, there is a big drop-off. 

We hear that the type of receiver that the Jets would likely target is one with a good size-speed ratio to become the team's deep threat. Sparano’s physical, run-first offense will ideally set up the deep ball.

“We were up in the tops of the league in plus-20-yard plays (in Miami), and my time with Dallas, as well,” Sparano said in January. “We’ll be explosive; we’ll be able to get it down the field.”

“No, you have to throw the ball, and we have to be able to score points,” GM Mike Tannenbaum said Thursday when asked if a run-first attack limited the need for drafting a receiver.

The team would look to replace what Braylon Edwards brought to the passing game — assuming the free agent doesn’t return. Tannenbaum said the team “would not rule him out.” Edwards led the team in yards per catch in his two seasons with the Jets, peaking at 17.1 yards in 2010. Last season, Plaxico Burress led the team with a 13.6-yard receiving average, and he was not re-signed.

Schilens has the tools but has not been able to produce at a high level, let alone stay healthy, though he is certainly one option for the Jets on the outside to stretch the field opposite Holmes. Michael Floyd is not expected to be available for the Jets at No. 16 on Draft Day, and it’s worth mentioning the team has more pressing needs than wideout. Yet, a big outside receiver being selected with one of their 10 picks would not be a surprise. 

Follow Kevin Fishbain on Twitter