Jets saw “unique opportunity to get a top-10 player” with Alijah Vera-Tucker trade

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One common observation about quarterback Sam Darnold‘s three years with the Jets was that the team didn’t do enough to surround him with talented players on offense.

Darnold is now in Carolina and the Jets didn’t waste much time before trying to make sure the same isn’t true for his successor. Zach Wilson became the team’s new quarterback with the second pick in this year’s draft and General Manager Joe Douglas jumped nine spots to get him some help on the offensive line.

Douglas traded the 23rd pick and two third-rounders to the Vikings for the 14th pick and a fourth-round selection. He used No. 14 on former USC offensive lineman Alijah Vera-Tucker.

“I think where we were sitting at 23, we felt like we had a unique opportunity to get a top-10 player in our minds as our board was stacked. To go up and get a guy like Alijah Vera-Tucker, a player that has started at tackle, has started at guard and has been highly productive at both. That versatility and that production is something we really value,” Douglas said, via Brian Costello of the New York Post.

Vera-Tucker is the second offensive lineman the Jets have drafted in the first round in the last two years. Mekhi Becton had a strong rookie year at left tackle and Vera-Tucker may slot in next to him at left guard to form a tandem the Jets hope will be part of brighter days for their offense.

24 responses to “Jets saw “unique opportunity to get a top-10 player” with Alijah Vera-Tucker trade

  1. Joe Thuney, 4th rd.

    You don’t waste picks during a rebuild for a Guard. Thr Jets are still the Jets.

  2. Bold move by Joe D..I wouldn’t mind Teven Jenkins at 34..they might actually be able to run the ball for the first time in 10 years

  3. Pre draft, no one said Alijah Vera-Tucker was a top 10 pick. I was surprised the Jets would trade up for a guard that high in this draft.

  4. Joe Douglas is slowly building a potent OL. The roster he took over was so bereft of talent it’s going to take time but I really like the way he is going about his business so far.

  5. Sam Darnold failed because Sam Darnold is a bust and has nothing to do with protection, otherwise you would’ve KEPT him since you’re adding protection now. and you could’ve used that #2 pick to get even MORE protection. Since the Jets and media claim the ONLY thing wrong with him was lack of protection.

    Enter the Panthers who still have a weak offensive line. Oops! (get your excuses ready)

  6. It’s certainly not a bad plan. The last time the Jets were respectable was when they had Faneca, Ferguson, Mangold and Woody on the O-Line and could actually protect and run the ball well.

  7. Why does it feel as fan, I am watching a car stuck in mud and the wheels are just spinning.

  8. It was a gamble for Minnesota that Darrisaw would still be available at 23. But it paid off and now you have to ask, would you rather have Vera-Tucker or Darrisaw and two 3rd round picks? Time will tell.

  9. So the Vikings got the pick that many mock drafts had them taking at 14, and 2 3rd round picks. Guarantee they move up into the second given 4 3rd rounders to play with.

  10. mumfio says:
    April 30, 2021 at 9:18 am
    Pre draft, no one said Alijah Vera-Tucker was a top 10 pick. I was surprised the Jets would trade up for a guard that high in this draft.

    5 7 Rate This

    ————-

    Who tosses 2 3rd picks during a rebuild to move up for a Guard.

    BB got All Pro playing Michael Onwenu in Rd 6 last year. David Andrews is undrafted.

    You have bad coaching if you are trading up for an interior lineman. The Jets waste all kinds of draft capital and free agency money by overpaying for everything.

    What’s next, Zach Wilson at 2 is better than Mac Jones at 15?

  11. Does it matter ? Belichick found a new QB that has traits such as leadership hard working accurate gets rid of ball quickly sees the field and passes with anticipation better than anyone in draft. Sound familiar ? Sort of like a QB from the past ?

    The Jets are DOOMED

  12. “You don’t waste picks during a rebuild for a Guard. Thr Jets are still the Jets.”

    Whatever.

  13. The move made sense for both teams. The Jets had a lot of draft capital so they should be moving up to get a player they really like. Vera-Tucker wouldn’t have been there at 23. He could be an All-Pro guard someday. For the Vikings, a guard would have been a reach there and they liked several offensive linemen. They also wanted to get a second-round pick and now they can. Win-win and no one is going to be complaining if both players work out.

  14. LOVE the player, didn’t love giving both 3’s. If he trades 34 down and recoups a couple picks, probably a 3 and another 4 I LOVE the trade too. This guy is a stud and fills a huge need. I think Wilson can and will succeed as long as he’s not running for his life every down.

  15. “You don’t waste picks during a rebuild for a Guard. Thr Jets are still the Jets.”

    You do if the guy can also step in at LT (or RG or RT) and also play at a high level.

  16. If he plays well, where he was drafted won’t matter. A lot of draft picks are busts. I don’t think you can go wrong building a strong OL.

  17. A tale of two cities, and GM thinking. One GM wants to trade up to get an offensive tackle. One GM trades down, to get his offensive tackle and extra picks. No side was fleeced, but I’d say the Vikings did better in that trade.

  18. Fear is a Liar says:
    April 30, 2021 at 11:55 am
    The move made sense for both teams. The Jets had a lot of draft capital so they should be moving up to get a player they really like. Vera-Tucker wouldn’t have been there at 23.
    ////////
    Actually, there’s a pretty good he would have been there at 23. The Vikings obviously weren’t going to take him, or they wouldn’t have made that trade. I suppose the Raiders could have taken him, but they were obviously enamored with Leatherwood. I mean, we will never know if another team would have traded up to get him, but it doesn’t seem like it, as no other team traded up to get Darrisaw either.

  19. He’s good, but the Vikes got a player just as good at #23, and netted two additional 3rd rounders. Seems to me the Jets could have done the same thing.

  20. “He’s good, but the Vikes got a player just as good at #23, and netted two additional 3rd rounders. Seems to me the Jets could have done the same thing.”

    The Jets needed a guard, not a tackle. Darrisaw is great but he’s pretty much a pure tackle.

  21. I love the guys who say “You don’t trade up for a guard”. Ever play football outside your backyard?

    The truth is that next to your QB your OL is the most important component of your offense. No QB in this league can pass if not protected (ask Mahomes about last year’s SB) and no running back can run if there aren’t any holes (ask Barry Sanders).

    And honestly a very good OL turned a marginal Dak Prescott into a $40 Mil a year QB. Too bad he no longer has that OL in front of him because without them he ain’t a $40 mil a year QB.

    Good receivers are a dime a dozen and the best receiver in the world can’t do squat for you when his QB is face down in the turf under a pile of bodies wearing the wrong color jersey.

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