The New York Jets, originally slotted at No. 6 in the first round, traded up to land the No. 3 spot from the Indianapolis Colts. The Jets gave the Indianapolis their first-round pick along with two 2018 second-round picks (Nos. 37 and 49) and a 2019 second-rounder to move up three spots.
— Indianapolis Colts (@Colts) March 17, 2018
The Jets, remember, lost out on the Kirk Cousins sweepstakes and quickly moved to Plan B by signing veterans Josh McCown and Teddy Bridgewater. The final piece of that plan, it appears, is to nab one of the highly touted quarterbacks in the first round of the draft.
With the trade, the new top six in the draft are, in order: Cleveland, New York Giants, New York Jets, Cleveland, Denver, Indianapolis.
Cleveland traded for quarterback Tyrod Taylor and already declared him the starter for 2018. But it could still draft another quarterback as well as a playmaker, perhaps running back Saquon Barkley.
Which means at least three quarterbacks could be gone before the Broncos are up.
The class of 2018 is heavy with quarterback talent, with Josh Allen, Baker Mayfield, Josh Rosen and Sam Darnold. But not one is regarded as the consensus top pick.
The Broncos coached Allen and Mayfield at the Senior Bowl, plan to have Mayfield and Rosen in for visits, and hope to see Darnold in a private workout ahead of the draft. But if they don’t love any of them, they can turn to another immediate impact player. Maybe that’s guard Quenton Nelson. Maybe that’s pass-rusher Bradley Chubb.
“Having Case as our starter and Paxton (Lynch) as the two right now, with that fifth pick we have flexibility now,” coach Vance Joseph said. “To have a chance to pick in the top five is obviously a good thing for this football team. Moving forward, we don’t want to be in the top five so we have to take advantage of being in the top five of the first, second and third round. You can really find impact players. When the Broncos last picked in the top five, who was the pick? Von Miller. We want a guy at the level of Von Miller. We’ll see who that person is, but to have a chance to pick in the top five of the first, second and third round for this place is different. We shouldn’t be there anymore.”