Jets select UNC RB Michael Carter in 4th round of NFL Draft, then turn focus to defense in later rounds

Zach Wilson has to be elated with the Jets’ draft.

The Jets continue to fill their offensive needs and selected North Carolina running back Michael Carter with their fourth-round pick (No. 107 overall) on the final day of the NFL Draft Saturday.

The 5-8, 202-pound dynamite plays like Kansas City Chiefs’ Clyde Edwards-Helaire. Carter is shifty with good vision. Once he gets to the second level he can take the ball to the crib.

Carter is a fit in new Jets offensive coordinator Mike LeFleur west coast offense since they will run a wide zone run scheme.

Carter said he has played in that type of offense his whole life.

“I think my change of direction and my stop-start ability, I think it compliments this system well,” Carter told reporters. “I’ve been running pretty much wide zone since I was born. So it’s something that really comes naturally to me. We read a lot of it in college, even in high school I did, even in youth football I did. So I’m very familiar with it. I’m just excited to get in the system.”

Carter describes his run game in two words: ”Explosive and fun.”

“Fun to watch. I try to score every time I get the rock. But also knowing situational football. I like to have fun when I play football, because it’s a fun game. It’s something that could change your life so I’m just excited to go run in the NFL.”

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GANG GREEN FINALLY GOES FOR DEFENSE

5TH ROUND PICKS

The Jets drafted Auburn safety Jamien Sherwood with pick No. 146. Sherwood had 75 tackles with three tackles for loss and a sack last season. The Jets plan on playing him at linebacker and he is prepared for that.

“I’m more than comfortable at the end of the day, I’m a football player,” Sherwood said. “My versatility got me here. They could put me at defensive end, corner, I’m going to just out there and make plays.”

With the No. 156 pick Gang Green snagged another Michael Carter but this Carter is a defensive back from Duke. In 2020, he had 41 tackles with three tackles for loss with two interceptions. With their final pick in the fifth round (No. 175 overall) the Jets nabbed Pittsburgh cornerback Jason Pinnock. Last season Pinnock had three interceptions and five pass deflections.

Head coach Robert Saleh said the No. 1 trait he wants in cornerbacks is the ability to win in man-to-man coverage. Pinnock believes that’s his best trait.

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“That’s all I do, go watch my film. Four years straight, since I was a 17-year-old freshman, I was in people’s chest,” Pinnock said. “Man to man, that’s our defense that’s what our (defensive coordinator) lives on and we love it.”

He’s also familiar with former Jets and Pitt legend Darrelle Revis.

“I played with Jordan Whitehead, his cousin, and I’ve had a couple of conversations with Revis, not many,” Pinnock added. “Smart, smart, smart football player.”

6TH ROUND PICKS

Gang Green continued the run on the defensive side of the ball when they grabbed Florida State safety Hamsah Nasirildeen to start the sixth round (No. 186). Nasirildeen fell in the draft because of an ACL tear that limited him to two games in 2020. In 2019, he had 101 tackles with two tackles for loss and two interceptions. Gang Green grabbed defensive back Brandin Echols from University of Kentucky with their next selection (No. 200). Echols had 54 tackles, two TFLs and one interception as as senior in 2020. The Jets finished their draft class with Jonathan Marshall, a defensive tackle from Arkansas, with pick No. 207. In 10 games, he recorded 19 solo tackles and had 6.4 tackles for loss.

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