The NFL Draft is just around the corner. Last season was a big year for West Virginia, three players getting drafted in the first three rounds. Now, though, we’ll look at who could help current WVU Pros’ teams in the 2014 NFL Draft.
Geno Smith sat around waiting, cameras eyeing him up all night at Radio City Music Hall in New York City, waiting for his name to be called. Unfortunately for him, he had to wait until Day Two. But fortunately for the New York Jets, he was still available.
Knowing that current quarterback Mark Sanchez was struggling, the Jets took Smith in the second round to compete for the starting job. When an injury sidelined Sanchez, Smith stepped in. But he had very few weapons on the offensive side of the ball.
Now, with wide receiver Eric Decker and running back Chris Johnson on board, the Jets are looking to win now.
Beckham Jr. provides solid speed at the receiver spot. He, along with Decker and Jeremy Kerley, give Smith three reliable targets to throw to. Working the outside with a 5-foot-11, 198-pound frame, Beckham Jr. should provide smooth hands and can accelerate. He can also help in the return game for the Jets.
Last season the LSU wideout caught 59 balls for 1,152 yards and eight scores, averaging 19.5 yards per catch in the defense-heavy SEC. He also racked up 845 kick return yards while piling up 2,222 all-purpose yards. His return skills help in in the open field, where he would find room while playing opposite of Decker in New York.
Beckham Jr. has had private meetings with five different NFL teams, one being the Jets. But the Jets are the only team listed as having multiple meetings with the wide receiver.
A few days ago, Rich Cimini of ESPNNewYork.com gave his outlook on the position:
“They partially addressed the need in free agency, giving Decker a $7 million-a-year contract, but they don’t have a reliable speed receiver on the perimeter. Hill was supposed to be that guy, but he hasn’t put it together for a variety of reasons. They’re in big trouble if they don’t add a dynamic playmaker. Another factor to consider is the long-term outlook. Decker and Hill are the only veterans under contract in 2015, so building depth has to be a priority. It would be a shock if they don’t draft at least two receivers.”
At the end of his assessment, he said the need for WR on a scale of 1-10 was a 10, naming Beckham Jr. as a possible first round pick.
It just makes sense to take a WR and the best available will likely be the LSU Tiger at No. 18.