With more Idzik draftees biting the dust at New York Jets camp, it’s time to examine just how bad the former GM’s tenure was.
With New York Jets regular season football a week away, the team has set its 53-man roster in preparation for an East Rutherford hosting of the Cincinnati Bengals.
Jets’ roster casualties, veteran mainstays, and rookie hopefuls alike, numbered 22 on Saturday’s NFL cut day — a day of fortune for so many dreamers, yet one of rejection for even more aspirants.
Most notably from Florham Park, the Jets sent highly-selected draftees Dee Milliner and Jace Amaro packing, signifying all but a confirmation that former GM John Idzik’s personnel acquisition was nothing short of pitiful.
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In cutting ties with Milliner and Amaro, the Jets have effectively waved the white flag on the number nine and 49 overall selections in the 2013 and 2014 drafts, respectively, which is best called a retrospective shame.
With the censure of John Idzik now commenced, let’s open the criticism in consideration of the infamous GM’s 19 draft selections. Those selections-gone-awry are due for reflection on the heels of a time in which four more got their pink slips.
For a change, acknowledgment of Idzik’s first round selections as “passable” is deserved. He went two for three, taking Milliner and Sheldon Richardson ninth and 13th overall, respectively, in the 2013 NFL Draft, and then successfully grabbing Calvin Pryor 18th overall in 2014.
After the first round at the rodeo, though, the operation fell apart for Idzik, an executive who made his career on skilled money management (A description alone which suffices to explain his unfitness to be a general manager).
In 2013, his Geno Smith pick at the top of the second round seemed like good value at the time, but that logistic fails to excuse the selection considering Smith’s less-than-stellar NFL showing.
Then came the notorious “Idzik 12,” as dubbed by Jets’ beat. In 2014, the Jets held a 12-fold crop of draft real estate, something that could have been pawned for maximized value by trading up and down when appropriate.
Instead, Idzik chose to keep each and every pick. The Jets would wait until they were told it was their selection.
And there you have it: Amaro, Dexter McDougle (a depth cornerback), Jalen Saunders, Shaq Evans, Dakota Dozier, Jeremiah George, Brandon Dixon, IK Enemkpali (cue for humorous comment), Tajh Boyd, and Trevor Reilly make up 10 of the 12.
Quincy Enunwa looks like a sixth-round steal for Idzik, but — for the love of football — could anyone fail more miserably? Each of the ten players listed above were cut by the Jets since his getting drafted with the obligatory exception of Dexter McDougle, who has occupied the injured reserve with dignity.
In 19 selections, John Idzik characterized himself as an awful evaluator of talent. Just to consider the value the Jets should have, but wrongly do not have, on the talent of more than a handful of the 19 draftees is painful. Because, with a marginally higher success clip, or perhaps nailing one of his second round selections, the state of the Jets’ franchise would be, believe it or not, dramatically different.
But – after all – is the Idzik condemnation necessary at this point?
Based on pure necessity, the answer is no.
But built on an understanding of just how pathetic his Jets’ career was — as illuminated by the releases of two of his most heralded prospects — and, under the comprehension of the draft’s immense implications, it is blatantly lurid that we must never forget the stumbles of John Idzik.
Mike Maccagnan, keep plugging away. Because New Yorkers never forget.