NFL

NFL Draft Betting: Which Position Will the Jets Address With Their First Pick in 2024?

Aidan McGrath
Aidan McGrath@ffaidanmcgrath

The New York Jets franchise is at a critical point. The team went all-in on Aaron Rodgers for the 2023 season but saw their hopes dashed just four offensive snaps into the year. Rodgers is expected to be fully healthy and available entering the 2024 season -- if he doesn't join Robert F. Kennedy Jr. on the campaign trail -- but this feels like a do-or-die situation for this iteration of the Jets.

Part of what adds to the stakes for Gang Green is that the team felt so close to being good last year even with Zach Wilson playing close to league-worst levels for much of the year. We all saw the blueprint for the Jets' success -- an airtight defense shutting down their opponents while young offensive stars in the making like Breece Hall and Garrett Wilson generated explosive plays.

Last year, that approach netted them a 7-10 record despite scoring the fourth-fewest points. For 2024, assuming Rodgers is healthy, it's fair to assume that anything less than a strong playoff run would be considered a disappointment.

With so much riding on this season, it hard to understate how important the upcoming NFL Draft will be for the Jets. If they land the right player at the right position, this could be a Super Bowl team -- they're currently tied with the 12th-best odds to win the Super Bowl (+3000) on FanDuel Sportsbook. If they don't, Woody Johnson and company could be looking for a new general manager and coach duo to run their franchise for the 2025 season.

Barring any trades, the Jets are slated to select 10th overall in April's fast-approaching draft. The Jets don't have a second-round pick, adding to the stakes for their first pick in the draft. Which positions should they consider drafting with that pick? Let's take a look at FanDuel Sportsbook's NFL Draft odds and see which position the market thinks the Jets will draft with their first pick.

NFL Draft Betting Odds

Position of New York Jets First Drafted Player

Position
Odds
Offensive Line-250
Wide Receiver+340
Tight End+750
Defensive Lineman/Edge+1400
Cornerback+2900
Quarterback+4500
Linebacker+20000
View Full Table

Offensive Line (-250)

Offensive line is the clear favorite to be the first position the Jets draft this year -- it just makes a whole lot of sense.

Gang Green's goal for the season should be to make sure Rodgers stays upright and plays 17 games. That's hard to do without a left tackle (Mekhi Becton is expected to sign elsewhere in free agency). The Jets ranked 30th out of 32 teams in PFF's pass blocking grade, so there was already a need for extra offensive line help before the offseason.

The Jets are positioned well to address their offensive line in the draft. NFL.com's Daniel Jeremiah's Top 50 Prospects list currently has an offensive lineman ranked 9th, 10th, and 12th. The teams slated to draft ahead of New York seem lined up to select from this year's highly touted quarterback and wide receiver classes, meaning the Jets could feasibly have their choice of this year's offense lineman prospects.

If the Jets' need at the position combined with their positioning in this year's draft weren't convincing enough, general manager Joe Douglas has already showcased a preference for offensive linemen in the draft. In three of his four drafts for the Jets, Douglas has taken an offensive lineman with his first or second pick. It has been a clear priority for Douglas since taking over, and it figured to be a priority for him once more.

Wide Receiver (+340)

So, what if the Jets choose to address their offensive line in free agency? Rodgers has connections to now-former Green Bay Packers tackle David Bakhtiari after all. That could open up a number of options at 10th overall for the playoff-hopeful squad.

If we're looking at just a list of this year's top prospects, the Jets' draft position could line up nicely for them to take a wide receiver. Each of Marvin Harrison Jr., Malik Nabers, and Rome Odunze are expected to go early in Round 1, and with at least 3 quarterbacks expected to go early, as well, one of that WR trio could fall to New York at 10.

Douglas' penchant for drafting receivers is almost as obvious as his preference for linemen -- he took a wideout with one of his top three picks in each of his first three drafts with the Jets. Only one of those picks is still on the roster, and after Allen Lazard made a case to be the worst offseason signing of the 2023, it's fair to assume the Jets will take another shot at the position in 2024.

The Jets' defense is queued up for another solid year, and the team has an elite running back. If they can shore up the offensive line in free agency, the Jets' next priority should be making sure Rodgers has quality playmakers to throw the ball to other than Wilson.

Brock Bowers Tight End (+750)

FanDuel Sportsbook's odds have tight end as the third-most likely position for the Jets' first draft pick, but it's clear this is a specific callout to former Georgia Bulldogs star Brock Bowers. Bowers is Jeremiah's seventh-ranked prospect and The Athletic's Dane Brugler's fifth-overall player in this year's class. Neither of the well-respected analysts has another tight end graded as a first-round caliber player.

Bowers posted an elite 2.65 yards per route run as the Bulldogs' top receiver last year, finishing his third season with 56 catches for 717 yards and 6 touchdowns in just 10 games. He was a standout producer in all three of his seasons of college ball and shined against strong competition in the SEC.

The Jets have +750 odds to draft Brock Bowers, making them the fourth-most likely team to do so. They could certainly use his talents, too. If the top wideouts go before New York picks at 10, Bowers would be the next-best pass catcher on the board on draft day.


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The above author is a FanDuel employee and is not eligible to compete in public daily fantasy contests or place sports betting wagers on FanDuel. The advice provided by the author does not necessarily represent the views of FanDuel. Taking the author's advice will not guarantee a successful outcome. You should use your own judgment when participating in daily fantasy contests or placing sports wagers.