Jets and Giants tackle defensive problems in first round

The first round of the NFL draft was completed yesterday. The Giants had the 19th overall pick, and the Jets had the 30th overall pick.

Most people thought the Giants would try to supplement their aging offensive line, but after Nate Solder was selected by the Patriots, the Giants selected cornerback Prince Amukamara from Nebraska. Amukamara was the second corner selected in the first round, but may have the best instincts of any cornerback, a position where instincts are extremely important. He is big and will be able to play bump-and-run coverage against pro recievers. Amukamara will join Corey Webster and Terrell Thomas in the Giants secondary and should allow the Giants to incorporate different pass rush schemes into their defense.
The Jets decided to keep their pick this year instead of trading to get a higher pick. They selected defensive lineman Muhammed Wilkerson from Temple. Wilkerson may eventually replace Shaun Ellis who is now 33 years old and nearing the end of his career. Wilkerson is experienced in a 3-4 defense and will give the Jets a strong and agile pass rusher to complement linebackers Calvin Pace and Bryan Thomas, something they were lacking last season. Wilkerson should be a successful pass rusher, but his size (6-4, 315) will also make his an effective run stopper and help alleviate the eventual loss of Ellis.
The second and third rounds will take place tonight. The Giants will get the 19th pick in the second round and the 20th pick in the third round, and the Jets will have the 30th pick in the third round (they traded their second round pick for Antonio Cromartie). The Giants will eventually need to address their offensive line, and also need to add a wide receiver to their core of injury-prone receivers. After adding a run-stopper in the first round, the Jets may wait to add a defensive tackle to replace Kris Jenkins, and instead may target a safety or an outside linebacker.

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