SNY's weekly look at the top players on board for the Jets as they prepare to make the sixth overall pick of the NFL draft on April 27, complete with who's rising and who's falling throughout the process and as the Jets' potential needs change:
1.) CB Marshon Lattimore, Ohio State - The ides of the Jets taking a cornerback sixth overall seemed logical even before Darrelle Revis was charged with four felonies and a misdemeanor after a street fight in Pittsburgh 10 days ago. He probably wasn't coming back anyway, certainly not as a corner, but the incident amplified the need at his position. The combine next week will help solidify Lattimore's status as a Top 10 player. It even could push him out of the Jets' reach and into the Top 5. (Last week: 1)
2.) S Jamal Adams, LSU - This hasn't always been a position that teams thought of as worthy of a Top 10 pick, but as the NFL has become more pass-happy and offenses have become more adept at quickly forcing mismatches, a true play-making safety has become an absolute must. And with Calvin Pryor heading into the final season of his contract, the Jets' safety corps of the future looks thin. The 6-1, 213-pound Adams has drawn comparisons to Giants safety Landon Collins, who was just an NFL Defensive Player of the Year candidate in his second year in the league. (Last week: 4)
3.) S Malik Hooker, Ohio State - Continuing the safety theme (and the Jets' overall need for help in the secondary), this 6-2, 205-pounder stays where he is, but with an asterisk. He won't work out at the combine next week, but teams will begin to get an idea of where he is in his recovery from hernia and labrum surgery. That occurred in January, and he's expected to be out 4-6 months, which puts him on track for a spring return at the earliest. Teams will have to take a leap of faith, maybe without seeing him work out. That's why the medical checks will be key. And those can vary widely. Teams can look at the same tests and one will see a Top 10 pick while the other might decide to pass. (Last week: 3)
4.) RB Leonard Fournette, LSU - The Jets have so many bigger needs than running back, with Bilal Powell and Matt Forte both still under contract, but this 6-1, 235-pound freight train just keeps sitting there in mock drafts, staring at the Jets. He is the best running back in the draft, a consensus Top 10 pick -- and really, Top 5, in many places -- and a potential game-changing talent. This could be like Leonard Williams a few years ago -- a player the Jets don't necessarily need immediately, but a talent too big to pass on if he's there. (Last week: 2).
5.) LB Reuben Foster, Alabama - David Harris is 33 years old and entering the final year of his contract (assuming he's not cut before it starts) and the Jets need to bolster their linebacking corps of the future and find someone to grow at the position along with the promising Darron Lee. Foster is a powerful, 6-1, 228-pounder who is known for ferocious hitting, but also has exceptional speed and athleticism. Some scouts see him as a dangerous inside linebacker, while others see him projecting to an outside linebacker in the NFL. Either way -- or perhaps both ways -- he would look good behind the Jets' strong defensive front and give opposing offenses another weapon to account for when game-planning against the Jets. (Last week: N/A).
Dropped from the board this week: QB Mitch Trubisky, North Carolina (5 last week)
Other previously included players: Clemson WR Mike Williams, Alabama CB Marlon Humphrey.