7 Senior Bowl standouts who could interest Jets
Saturday afternoon’s Senior Bowl game ended in a comfortable win for the National Team by a score of 27-10 over the American Team. Defense dominated for much of the day as there was just one offensive touchdown scored in the first 55 minutes.
Fresno State quarterback Jake Haener took home the MVP award, but let's recap some of the performances from some other players who could fill a potential need for the Jets...
Bowling Green DT Karl Brooks
Brooks is an interesting prospect because he primarily lined up outside in college, but tipped the scales at 303 pounds at his weigh-in earlier this week. Despite lacking ideal length, he has the technique and skillset to play inside at the NFL level and the Jets need depth and youth at that position.
On Saturday, he showcased his motor as he kept working to pick up a coverage sack and also showed good burst to flush the quarterback from the pocket on a stunt.
Stanford WR Michael Wilson
Wilson missed a lot of time in college and only surpassed 500 receiving yards in one of his five seasons, but he’s been impressive all week in Mobile and paced all receivers with 76 yards on four catches in Saturday’s game.
Having impressed early with a downfield catch down the seam, Wilson stopped on a dime to lose his man and made a leaping first-down snag in the second half, then wrapped up his day with a 44-yard touchdown catch. On the touchdown, the quarterback threw a jump ball into double coverage and Wilson located the ball early to comfortably make a play on it.
Maryland CB Jakorian Bennett
Bennett’s last-minute interception iced the win for his team as he lined up in the slot and displayed good positional awareness in zone coverage to step in front of a receiver.
Over the past two seasons, Bennett led the Power Five with 27 defensed passes, including five interceptions. His ball skills should therefore appeal to some NFL teams, especially those who struggled to create turnovers in 2022 like the Jets.
Northwestern RB Evan Hull
Hull led all players with 85 yards from scrimmage on 12 touches on Saturday, as he constantly picked up chunks of yardage, having broken free for a 24-yard run early on.
Although he only caught two short passes in this game, Hull led all FBS running backs with over 500 receiving yards during the regular season, which should appeal to NFL teams. The Jets could be in the market for a third-down back with Ty Johnson a free agent.
Tennessee DE Byron Young
Young is a former Junior College player who transferred to Tennessee in 2021 and had 12.5 sacks in 23 games over the past two seasons. The Jets have plenty of defensive line depth but could be looking for more with Vinny Curry and Bryce Huff hitting free agency.
Young had a key play in Saturday's game as he used a speed-to-power move to drive the left tackle into the quarterback’s face, forcing him into a bad throw that was intercepted and returned for a decisive touchdown. However, Young also displayed good instincts by dropping off the line to blow up a screen pass for a short gain.
North Dakota OL Cody Mauch
Mauch played left tackle for the Bisons, but has been getting a lot of work on the inside this week as many scouts feel his arms are too short to play tackle in the NFL. On Saturday, though, he got plenty of work at the tackle positions and held up well in pass protection, while showing some ability to move people in the running game.
Scouting reports indicate that Mauch needs some technical refinement in terms of his footwork and balance, but he looked comfortable at tackle in Saturday's game and has perhaps benefited as much as anyone from facing a lot of top-level talent this week. Of course, the versatility he showed by also playing well inside won’t hurt his reputation either and the Jets obviously need as much depth as possible on the line.
South Alabama WR Jalen Wayne
Finally, the hometown hero Wayne got plenty of chances to shine in this game, as he ended up with a game-high eight receptions. While these were mostly on short passes, he was a reliable possession option that showed he can move the chains and find open areas underneath.
The 6-foot-2 Wayne’s cousin is former pro bowler Reggie Wayne, a fact which could invite some teams to give him a shot. However, he’ll be one of the older receiver prospects in the draft, as he will turn 24 in May.