Enemy Intel: How'd the Jets do in the draft?

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Enemy Intel: How'd the Jets do in the draft?

By Tom E. Curran
CSNNE.com

Mike Tannenbaum has become one of the NFL's most aggressive and risk-welcoming general managers. Theballsy moves the Needham native has swung include dealing for Brett Favre, Braylon Edwards, Santonio Holmes and Antonio Cromartie. He also went way up in the first round in 2009 to draft Mark Sanchez, so his draft day adventurousness is proven as well. And Tannenbaum went aggressive again in this draft. Picking at 30, the Jets got the best player available for them in Temple DEDT Muhammad Wilkerson. The knock on him was that he played against a lower level of competition and is still raw, but the 6-foot-4, 315-pound Wikerson is just perfect in terms of athleticism, potential and frame to be a success in the Jets 3-4 scheme. Kenrick Ellis was the Jets' third-round pick and they got a talented, tough and competitive nose tackle who goes 6-5, 346. The reason he was there at 94? He's facing a felony assault charge after breaking the jaw and nose of a man last April. The story goes that Ellis was approached by this bat-wielding fella and it didn't turn out well for the bat-wielder. It goes to trial in July. Ellis was kicked out of South Carolina for reportedly failing drug tests. The Jets took running back Bilal Powell from Louisville with the 126th pick. He's a good one-cut runner and decent pass-catcher. His profile in Pro Football Weekly's Draft Preview begins, "Neglected academics, ran with the wrong crowd, and was stabbed after his sophomore season as a Florida prep before moving in with a coach's family and turning his life around."Their next two picks - wide receiver Jeremy Kerley from TCU and Alabama quarterback Greg McElroy - were less risky. Kerley's a good little slot guy who can do some return work. McElroy is a smart, tough, hard-working quarterback who is good depth but not starter material. Tannenbaum came back in the final round and drafted Colorado wideout Scotty McKnight, a longtime friend of Sanchez. SUMMARY:The Jets could wind up with absolutely nothing to show from the 2011 draft. Taking a semi-project, a guy who could end up in jail, and some roster-fillers? Yeesh. The Jets could also wind up hitting the mother lode if Wilkerson plays to his capability, Ellis doesn't go to jail, Kerley becomes a successor to Jerricho Cotchery and Powell steps in when LT steps out. The linchpins of this draft, though, are Wilkerson and Ellis. This is a defensive-oriented team and the Jets either set up their defensive line for the long haul or missed out big.

Tom E. Curran can be reached at tcurran@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Tom on Twitter at http:twitter.comtomecurran

Mike Giardi: Don’t think Patriots will use franchise tag on Dont'a Hightower

Mike Giardi: Don’t think Patriots will use franchise tag on Dont'a Hightower

Mike Giardi discusses the odds that the New England Patriots franchise tag Dont'a Hightower and what he expects the Pats to get if they were to trade Jimmy Garoppolo.

Arizona Cardinals place franchise tag on Chandler Jones

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Arizona Cardinals place franchise tag on Chandler Jones

PHOENIX - The Arizona Cardinals, in an anticipated move, have placed a non-exclusive franchise tag on outside linebacker Chandler Jones after failing to reach a long-term deal with the player.

The non-exclusive tag allows the Cardinals to continue negotiating with Jones through July 15. If another team makes him an offer, Arizona can either match it or receive two first-round draft picks.

It's unlikely that any team would express interest in Jones, however, given what it would cost.

Under the franchise tag, Jones would receive about $15 million for the coming season.

Acquired in a trade with New England a year ago, Jones had 11 sacks, four forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries and 15 tackles for loss last season

Jones has 25 1-2 sacks over the past two seasons, third-most in the NFL over that span.

The Cardinals' move came two days before the NFL deadline for making franchise designations.

It also came on Jones' 27th birthday, prompting teammate David Johnson to tweet "Happy BDay to `The Man,' `Mr. Franchise' himself.....The one and only."

The franchise tag move came as no surprise.

Club President Michael Bidwill has stated all along that Jones would not be going anywhere, that the team didn't make the trade - sending guard Jonathan Cooper and a second-round draft pick to New England - to keep him just for one season.

"We're not going to mess around with that," Bidwill said in a recent interview on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM. "He's a great pass rusher, but if we can't agree to terms that work for us, we're just going to franchise him, and his people know that."

Jones immediately upgraded what had been an average Cardinals pass rush at best. His fellow outside linebacker Markus Golden had 12 1-2 sacks and seven tackles for loss. Together they form one of the better outside pass rush combinations in the NFL.

By all accounts, the contract talks with Jones have been cordial and Jones has said he wants to stay in Arizona.

"I love it here," he said near the end of last season. "I love the vibe that the people give off and I can see myself being here for a long time."

Chandler heads a long list of free agents that the Cardinals must either re-sign or let go. That group includes starters defensive tackle Calais Campbell, safety Tony Jefferson and inside linebacker Kevin Minter.