The New York Jets were tempted to trade up for a premier running back in the 2017 NFL Draft but got cold feet at the last second.
The New York Jets’ running back depth chart might’ve looked a little bit different if the front office was a democracy.
This coming off of a report from Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News suggesting that “there were important people in the organization who wanted to make an aggressive play to draft the big-play back, but the final decision maker opted to take the safer, more deliberate route, sources said.”
— Manish Mehta (@MMehtaNYDN) August 22, 2017
This is interesting because many analysts thought, despite the facade depth in the backfield, the Jets would be tempted by one Leonard Fournette if he were available at number six. That will, of course, forever be a “what-if” scenario because he ended up going fourth overall to the Jacksonville Jaguars.
So here’s how that dynamic duo will look this season. Matt Forte is a dinosaur in 2017. A species that is extinct (players over the age of 30 on the Jets). At the very least, he’s an endangered species. Who knows how much tread he has left on his tires? Bilal Powell is a younger back but he’s yet to have an opportunity to be “the guy” for the Jets.
So who would that guy have been for the Jets? Alvin Kamara.
Kamara had nearly 2,000 all-purpose yards with the Vols and has crazy potential as a do-it-all kind of back. He’s had injury issues but his NFL player comparison, per NFL.com’s Lance Zierlein, is former Jets running back Thomas Jones.
Quick shoutout: I spoke with Thomas Jones a while back and it’s a timeless interview. A lot of topics on the table: His acting career, his time with the Jets, and the rest of his NFL career.
So Why Didn’t the Jets Pull the Trigger?
In all honesty, the price was pretty steep, according to Mehta:
“The Saints traded away their 2018 second-round pick and 2017 seventh-round pick to the 49ers to draft Kamara in the third round (67th overall).”
So I don’t blame general manager Mike Maccagnan for not pulling the trigger. Although it would’ve been nice to have a home-run threat in the backfield for not only 2017 but the future.
It’s not good news that these leaks are coming out of the organization. Although they could be worse. Forte is likely gone next year and the Jets will need to add a running mate to pair with Powell.