While New York Jets first-round pick Quinnen Williams has attracted a majority of the headlines, third-round pick Jachai Polite has quietly signed his rookie contract and prepared to make his mark in the NFL.
Polite’s draft stock plummeted after a slow 40-yard dash time and underwhelming physical measurements, but his numbers speak for itself. In his final season with Florida, Polite tallied 27 total tackles with 19.5 for a loss and 11 sacks. He showed premium pass-rushing skills while also playing well against the run.
Oh that poor right tackle never had a chance…
That’s why Jachai Polite is getting top 20 hype. pic.twitter.com/QphAsm7zWI
— The Draft Network (@DraftNetworkLLC) December 29, 2018
The frequent defensive end might have to make the transition to outside linebacker in the NFL, as his frame isn’t ideal to fill a three-down role. However, he could play a decent amount on passing downs, as stopping the run might be his downfall at the professional level.
What does the New York Jets’ defensive line look like after the draft?
Moving forward, the defensive front for the Jets is much improved since adding Quinnen Williams and Jachai Polite. The line was already saturated with several talented players — Leonard Williams, Ryan Anderson, and Steve McLendon.
Quinnen, who was the top-rated defensive prospect in the 2019 NFL Draft, will be an immediate starter in the middle. He has immense pass-rush and run-stopping abilities to pair with a quality personality. His influence will be great as Polite comes into his own.
Jachai Polite puts LSU's left tackle in the spin cycle. What a player. pic.twitter.com/ckUnrqd1vl
— Fed Scivittaro (@MeshPointScout) October 6, 2018
There’s no question that Polite will require a few months of development, especially after going through the NFL Combine with a hamstring injury. He’s still likely not entirely healed, but when healthy he’s a force on the line of scrimmage.
Hopefully, the Jets can assist in increasing his play-weight but also maintaining his speed off the edge.