New York Jets news, commentary and insider info from beat writer Kimberley A. Martin.
Polian agrees, draft talent over needs
Mike Tannenbaum agreed on Thursday that a pass rush, a deep threat wide receiver and safety help were all important needs for the Jets.
But, he added, “I think it always comes back to: take the best player.”
Some fans may roll their eyes at such a premise, given the glaring holes the Jets have at several positions. But Tannenbaum’s way of thinking isn’t so uncommon, said Bill Polian, the former Colts president/vice chairman and current ESPN analyst.
He said his draft style was similar to Tannenbaum and Giants GM Jerry Reese, who also told reporters he’ll pick talent over need any day. (See, Jason Pierre-Paul).
“Exactly the same,” Polian said of his draft philosophy Friday. “The only caveat we added was that if the need line crossed the talent line, and there were three players and all the grades were equal or close to equal, we’d lean toward the need. But never at the expense of best player available. ...I always point to the fact that nobody thought we needed a wide receiver, we had Marvin Harrison, and we took a guy named Reggie Wayne because he was the best player available -- after trading down. And that worked out OK.”
Polian also didn’t see anything wrong with Tannenbaum saying he’ll go after another quarteback -- even though the Jets have Mark Sanchez, Tim Tebow and Greg McElroy.
“If Mike’s statement indicates that they plan to use Tebow as a specialized player -- a Wildcat player, if you will -- then it makes sense that they would look for another quarterback,” Polian said. “If they plan to use him in another fashion, in a more traditional fashion, maybe it might not. But only they know how the plan to use Tebow.”