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New Jets general manager Joe Douglas spent most of his career with the Baltimore Ravens although he's been with Philadelphia for the past three years. Prior to that, he spent a year with the Bears, which is where his path crossed with that of then-Bears offensive coordinator Adam Gase. With Gase and Douglas reunited in New York, it's worth looking back at the players drafted by Douglas' teams to see if we can identify any potential future targets for the Jets.
Ironically, two of the biggest offseason acquisitions for the Jets were two of the best draft picks from Douglas' time with the Ravens. Baltimore selected CJ Mosley in the first round in 2014 and Kelechi Osemele in the second round in 2012 and they've made six pro bowl appearances between them. However, are there any other selections that Douglas' teams made in the past who could be targets if they become available?
DL Timmy Jernigan - Philadelphia
Jernigan was drafted by Baltimore while Douglas was there, and he opted to bring him aboard once he got a role with the Eagles, along with wide receiver Torrey Smith, another player drafted while Douglas was with the Ravens. The pair each played a role in their Super Bowl winning season two years ago. That shows how worthwhile this exercise is, because there's direct evidence of Douglas targeting former draft picks with a new team - and having success in doing so.
Jernigan, who is still only 26, started 30 games in his first two years with the Eagles, although he missed most of last season with a back injury. Smith, who is now 30, spent last year with Carolina and only caught 17 passes so he's a less attractive option at this stage of his career. Both are out of contract at the end of the season, though.
CB Jimmy Smith - Baltimore
Smith, a first-round pick for the Ravens back in 2011, is entering the final year of a big-money deal but will be looking to show he still has plenty in the tank as he enters his thirties.
If Smith hits the market at the end of the season, he might be an ideal short-term solution with the Jets thin at the cornerback position. He enters the 2019 season with 78 career starts and 13 interceptions.
OLB Pernell McPhee - Baltimore
McPhee was a valuable pick for Douglas' Ravens in the fifth round of the 2011 draft and has been a productive player over the course of his career, with 31 career sacks. However, he didn't register a single sack in 13 games for Washington in 2018.
He's now back in Baltimore on a one-year deal and if he doesn't make their roster, he could bring some cheap veteran depth as a cutdown waiver claim. Alternatively, if he has a good year, the Jets could target the 30-year old in free agency on a short-term deal.
RB Jordan Howard - Philadelphia
Howard is another former Douglas pick who ended up following him to Philadelphia. The Eagles traded for the 24-year old, who was selected in the fifth round during Douglas' lone draft with the Bears in 2016. He fell just short of a third consecutive season with 1,000 rushing yards in 2018.
The Jets have plenty of depth at the running back positions right now, but Howard is a free agent at the end of the season and could be a potential offseason target if the Jets feel they have a need there.
LB Nick Kwiatkoski - Chicago
Kwiatkoski was another useful mid-round pick, who started 13 games in his first two years. However, he was relegated into a mostly rotational role last year after Roquan Smith was drafted. Should the Bears look to move the 26-year old, the Jets could consider targeting him. His contract is also up at the end of the year, so he could be a free agent target in 2020.
C Cody Whitehair - Chicago
Whitehair could be the ultimate score for the Jets, who badly need a long-term solution at the center position. The 26-year old has a chance to become one of the highest paid offensive linemen in the league and could get extended soon. However, if he doesn't and is allowed to hit the market when his contract expires at the end of the season, the Jets could decide to prioritize him. Douglas and the Bears selected the Pro Bowl center in the second round of the 2016 draft.
Finally, some former Douglas draft picks who aren't out of contract at the end of this season but could be targeted if they are released or made available for trade include OLB John Simon, TE Ed Dickson, G Marshall Yanda, and T Ricky Wagner.