Rex Ryan Grades Jets Draft

Opening Statement…
JOHN IDZIK: “Thanks for hanging in there with us today. A long, but very productive and great day for the Jets. (We’re) very excited to add two players in Jace Amaro and Dexter McDougle. Jace, we feel like is a size tight end that was flanked out, used down the field running all kinds of routes, (has) good hands, (was a) very productive player. Dexter, (we) felt like he flew under the radar to a certain extent. (He) was injured after three games. But we saw plenty of his play and certainly the three games leading into this season didn’t dissuade us at all, (it) really encouraged us in fact. (We’re) very excited to add those two players to our team.”

On if McDougle was on the team’s radar after the 2012 season…
IDZIK: “Well yeah, he’s the type of player you had your eyes on him early on. You’d like to see the entire season, but when he did start he had three picks in three games, (was) very productive in his short time. So it didn’t do anything to tell you that he was anything different than you had seen before.”

On if they made calls to trade up…
IDZIK: “Yes, we did.”

On if they wanted to trade up to take USC WR Marqise Lee…
IDZIK: “We won’t get into targets. But we just wanted to put ourselves into a good position to have alternatives.”

On McDougle…
REX RYAN: “I think Dex is a guy we feel really good about. In fact, it’s funny, the scouts do an unbelievable job with the preparation. Certainly we knew about Dex. I know (Senior Director of College Scouting) Terry (Bradway) had talked about him, (and then the) coaches follow up as well. When we watched him, we saw a guy that we think has versatility, can play outside, can play inside as a nickel possibly. Obviously, we like his cover skills. But we think he’s a complete corner. We think he can tackle. We know he can tackle. He’s aggressive. He’ll challenge you at the line of scrimmage. He’s got good ball skills. And obviously, we feel good (that) he can run. But (he’s) a very aggressive player as well. And the thing that I thought was impressive, Terry brought this to our attention, the coach there named an award after this young man. Dex is a tremendous person. He loved his team. He wanted to support them in every way he possibly could. But we think he fits that Jet profile. I think he’s a great teammate and (we) look forward to seeing what he can do here.”

On if the team envisions using Amaro in-line or flanked out wide…
IDZIK: “I think we can do both, really. He hadn’t been in-line as much. He did do a little bit of that at (Texas) Tech. He certainly has the size and he has the will, too. You see him get after it as a blocker. I think he has the size and now it’s just a matter of getting a (few) more reps at doing it. We’re not concerned that way.”

On whether the passing game has been addressed to some degree with drafting Amaro…
IDZIK: “Most certainly, he should have an impact on our passing game. No doubt.”

On how they evaluated Amaro’s skills compared with his production in the system…
TERRY BRADWAY: “Obviously in college football with the spread offenses there’s a lot of numbers put up, but I think when you look at him, the routes that he runs, he catches the ball very well. And the thing, like John said, you watch the Oklahoma game and there’s 11 snaps of him playing as a Y-tight end on the line of scrimmage and doing a good job. And if you watch him on the perimeter block, he’s really a good blocker. He knocks guys on their butt and off the field too as a blocker on the perimeter. It’s a little different than in line, I know that, but he’s got the want-to, to do it and the size. Anytime you’re evaluating a college player it’s not necessarily apples to apples, but you get a good feel for this player watching him on tape.”

On Amaro’s strength…
JEFF BAUER:” Like Terry said, he is (strong). If you watch him block, he’ll move people and he puts people on their backs, especially in the secondary. But those plays when he is inside, he gets movement and he competes. As a pass receiver, he took a lot of hits. He caught the ball a lot and he’s hit a lot on a lot of crossing routes and he held up well. As far as tight ends go, he’s a big guy that’s strong.”
RYAN: “I think he did like 26 reps at the combine as well in the bench press. Whatever that’s worth (joking).”
IDZIK: (Laughter) “That’s strong.”
RYAN: (Laughter) “Stronger than us combined (joking).”

On the assessment of the first three selections…
IDZIK: “We’re very happy with the three players that we’ve selected so far. Again, we’ve stuck true to form. We stuck to our board and we went into this draft feeling as though it meshed up well with us. By that I mean, some of the areas that were deeper throughout the draft, we felt could really help us as a team. I think that’s reflected in our first three picks.”

On whether there was serious consideration to draft a quarterback in the first three rounds…
IDZIK: “Yes, we we’re serious about all positions. We were looking at all positions.”

On whether he feels the pass defense can improve with the group of cornerbacks on the roster…
RYAN: “You’ve also got Kyle (Wilson), you’ve got Darrin (Walls), you’ve got a lot of guys that have played. We picked up Johnny Patrick and things, so there’s some guys that we feel really good about. But, I think we have to get better in our pass defense. I don’t think there’s any question about that and I think we will.”

On whether they took Amaro’s background into consideration…
IDZIK: “We don’t wipe anything away. We not only talk about it, but we drill down on those things. Again, it’s very important to learn the type of person that you’re bringing into the organization. We take that background research very seriously.”

On if McDougle is healed from surgery…
IDZIK: “He’s healed. Of course we won’t know specifically what he can do until he’s here, but he has been cleared by his doctors. He started out doing more football-type activities in preparation for his pro day, so all things are positive, but we’re going to be smart about it. We won’t know exactly how we’ll handle it until he gets here.”

On any questions about his durability because of his injury…
IDZIK: “No, not really. He’s an aggressive player. He supports the run with vigor. That’s the type of player we like. I think in our game you don’t want to shy away from anything, if you’re the aggressor you tend to be alright.”

On if Amaro can be like some of the big tight ends he has dealt with in the past few years…
RYAN: “Well I do. I think the combination of him and (Jeff) Cumberland, I think gives you two big targets. Believe me, those guys are hard to defend. I mean there is no doubt about it. I like both of those tight ends. And then we have sasquatch (Zach Sudfeld), too. We have some match up issues for some people. We’re really excited about it.”

On Amaro’s speed being in the mid 4.7’s at 4.74 and what they had/thought about it…
BAUER: “That was basically what we had too, but for a big guy that’s moving very well, I mean 4.7’s, mid 4.7’s, low 4.7’s for a 6’5” guy. You can tell in the tape he separates. He can get down the seam. He runs away from safeties. It’s a number to us. We look at it, but it’s what we see on the tape. His play speed is good.”

On the chances of drafting nine players tomorrow…
IDZIK: “Well, we’ll see what happens. Again, it’s nice going in with some ammunition. We can maneuver. When you have three and you select three it looks like you’re just waiting for your pick, but there are so many things happening behind the scenes. (It’s) tough to predict, but it’s nice going in with nine.”

On if the defense can be executed with the cornerbacks they have right now…
RYAN: “Yeah, I felt good before we even went into the draft. I thought we would have an outstanding defense. When you look at it with the two young men that we added, I think our chances are even better. We’re going to play great defense here, that’s what we do. I’m absolutely confident that we’ll do it.”

Source: New York Jets Media

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