By Brad Carroll
Here is a look at the contenders for the No. 1 pick in the NFL Draft and how each one effects the New York Jets' chances of taking a potential franchise quarterback. We look at some possible offensive linemen for the Giants as well. Read our Jets game picks against the spread here and our Giants game picks against the spread here.
1. Jacksonville Jaguars (1-10, SOS .574)
Sunday: Home against Giants (3-7)
Current Quarterback: Blake Bortles
The Jaguars hold the No. 1 pick this week, thanks to the Raiders beating the Chiefs last week. The Jaguars don't need a quarterback, as they should be set for at least the next three years with rookie Blake Bortles, who they believe is a future franchise quarterback. If Jacksonville continues to lose and stays in the No. 1 spot, the Jets would need it to keep the pick, as they won't take a quarterback. The problem arises if the Jags decide to trade the pick, which would be problematic for the Jets. So, root for the Jaguars this season to win, especially Sunday against the Giants.
2. Oakland Raiders (1-10, SOS .612)
Sunday: At Rams (4-7)
Current Quarterback: Derek Carr
The Raiders dropped from the top spot with their impressive victory a week ago Thursday against the Chiefs, with Carr looking like a possible franchise passer. The Jets and their fans need to hope Carr continues to play well this season, as the better he plays, the less likely the Raiders will be to take a quarterback in the NFL Draft. They shouldn't be in the market for Marcus Mariota, but it's still a decision the Raiders will discuss in great detail. Again, as with the Jags, the fear is the Raiders could trade the pick and someone could jump ahead of the Jets for Mariota or Jameis Winston.
3. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-9, SOS .439)
Sunday: Home against Bengals (7-3-1)
Current Quarterback: Josh McCown
The Buccaneers are one of the biggest competitors to the Jets for Mariota and Winston, as they are desperate to add a franchise quarterback. The Jets and their fans need to watch the Bucs closely, and become huge Tampa Bay fans the rest of the way. If the Buccaneers can somehow pull the upset at home against the Bengals, the Jets would overtake them in the draft order. That is huge because if Tampa is ahead of the Jets, there is no way Mariota is going to wind up in New York.
4. Tennessee Titans (2-9, SOS .558)
Sunday: At Texans (5-6)
Current Quarterback: Zach Mettenberger
Everything that was written for the Buccaneers could be here as well for the Titans. Right now, Tennessee would be in the market for Mariota or Winston, obviously a bad thing for the Jets, especially if Tampa and Tennessee both take quarterbacks in the first round. That would leave the Jets with nothing. But the Titans switch in quarterback to Mettenberger has helped the Jets, as the rookie from LSU has been impressive in his time as the starter. If he continues to progress, the less likely the Titans are to use a first round pick on a quarterback. The Titans also have a solid chance to win Sunday against the Texans as well. If Tennessee wins, that would be huge for the Jets.
5. New York Jets (2-9, SOS .587)
Monday: Home against Dolphins (6-5)
Current Quarterback: Geno Smith
The Jets reminded everyone just how bad they are as a team last Monday night against the Bills, so there is no reason to even put any effort into rooting for the team going forward. The Jets need to lose the rest of their games, plain and simple. If you're a Jets fan, you don't have to root for them to lose, but should hope they do. The Jets need a quarterback in the worst way, and the only way to get in position to take Mariota or Winston is to jump the Buccaneers and Titans. It will hurt watching the hated Dolphins win at MetLife, but it's best for the future direction of the franchise.
6. Washington Redskins (3-8, SOS .463)\
Sunday: At Colts (7-4)
Current Quarterback: Robert Griffin III
Even though RG3 isn't technically the starting quarterback anymore, he's still the one to watch this offseason. If the Redskins decide to cut bait with the former first-round draft pick (who, remember, was right there with Andrew Luck in the draft), it could effect the Jets in a few ways. First, if the Redskins continue to lose, they could be in the market to draft yet another quarterback in the first round. There is no way Colt McCoy or Kirk Cousins would get anyone excited for next year in Washington, so a sudden competitor has entered the field out of nowhere. Second, if the Jets don't get in position to draft a quarterback, they could be a potential trade partner for the Redskins and Griffin III. I wouldn't trade for Griffin, but if John Idzik is still in charge, and let's hope not, he has been known to make terrible decisions. There's still many weeks to play before we have to think about the second layer of landing a potential starting quarterback for the Jets.
7. New York Giants (3-8, SOS .603)
Sunday: At Jaguars (1-10)
Current Quarterback: Eli Manning
The Giants aren't going to take a quarterback in the first round, so there isn't a ton of hype surrounding the team's chances of landing a top player just yet. The Giants do have a ton of needs on the offensive line and elsewhere, so wherever they land in the draft order, they are likely to stay there and make the pick. Some of the best offensive linemen available are Brandon Scherff from Iowa, Andrus Peat from Stanford and Cedric Ogbuehi from Texas A&M. The Giants, if they want, will likely be able to add one of those three in the draft. Of course, there is also a lot of time between now and the draft, so an unknown prospect could enter the fray as well.