The 2021 NFL Draft first round is complete!
Jets 1st Pick (No. 2 Overall)
As everyone expected, the New York Jets selected BYU QB, Zach Wilson!
This question is now to be answered: Is the Jets quest to find their franchise QB over? We won't know for a few years, but there is good reason for fans to think so.
The new Jets QB put on an impressive show in his junior year at BYU. He had over 3600 yards, 33 touchdowns, and only three INT's. The 6-foot-2 QB ran for 200 plus yards as well. His arm is above and beyond any other QB on the board, and many compare its potential to that of Patrick Mahomes or Aaron Rodgers.
With his selection at No. 2, it is the highest a QB from BYU has ever been selected, and besides the selection of Joe Namath, this is the highest the Jets have ever selected a QB in the draft.
Jets fans have good reason to be cautious of this pick just as much as they have reason to celebrate. Since 1976, the Jets have drafted five quarterbacks in the first round, most recently, Sam Darnold. None of them have panned out in the way in which the Jets would have hoped. The Jets rocky history with selecting QB's may give Wilson and fans good reason to stay cautious.
Wilson tweeted after the selection, "A dream come true, and it's just the beginning. You haven't seen anything yet!" The charismatic young man has shown a great amount of excitement coming to New York under first-time head coach, Robert Saleh.
Despite Wilson's arm easily being the strongest in this draft class, it's important to note that Wilson can not turn this franchise around on his own, which leads me to the Jets next pick.
Jets 2nd pick (No. 14 Overall)
The Jets went with the option of protecting Wilson by trading up from No. 23 to select Alijah Vera-Tucker from USC with the No. 14 overall selection. In most people's eyes, he was the third best tackle behind Northwestern's Rashawn Slater and Oregon's Penei Sewell.
The Jets received that 14th pick as well as the No. 143 pick. They traded their 20th overall, 66th overall, and 86th overall to the Vikings. With their surplus of draft picks, this trade only knocked them off one of the picks, and getting a great guy to protect their young QB is worth it.
The Jets are getting a player who has incredible lower body strength with this big, thick framing. He has great processing skills, and the ability to adapt under pressure. His attack at the line could be a little stronger, but that is something the Jets can easily fix and develop.
This pick is a solid choice for New York in their everlasting effort to create a productive offense. Vera-Tucker joins Mekhi Becton, the stellar left tackle selected in the first round of the 2020 draft. Solidifying this line is crucial to giving Wilson the help he needs to succeed. Even with the moves the Jets made in the offseason at wide receiver, we should expect them to select a weapon in later rounds, especially with this deep draft class.
The pressure is on Gang Green to produce this time around. Joe Douglas working with a new promising head coach in Robert Saleh, who brought in Mike Lafleur to run the Shanahan offensive system.
Zach Wilson's arm is incredibly promising, and his charismatic personality fits really well with New York's style. Vera-Tucker is a big body, a strength-oriented tackle who will bring youth to the offensive line and will be a GREAT addition for this re-vamped Jets team.