Commentary

Jets desperately need pass-rusher

Griffen, a talented defensive end out of USC, could be the solution for Gang Green

Updated: April 21, 2010, 2:48 AM ET
By Jane McManus | ESPNNewYork.com

Over the next few days, ESPNNewYork.com will examine the Jets' top needs and who they might draft to address those concerns. The Jets need to draft a pass-rusher -- a more immediate concern if the team can't persuade Jason Taylor to move north. On Friday we looked at Penn State DT Jared Odrick. Today it's another viable option.

Everson Griffen
Scott Boehm/Getty ImagesCould Everson Griffen be the perfect fit for Gang Green?

Everson Griffen

Position: Defensive end
School: USC
Height: 6-3
Weight: 273
Age: 22

STRENGTHS: Griffen is tremendously quick: He ran a 4.66 in the 40-yard dash at the scouting combine. Add to that his strength -- he out-bench-pressed everyone there. With that kind of speed and power, he is an explosive pass-rusher with a variety of ways to throw off an offensive lineman. He is just as effective against the run. He has played as a down lineman and as a stand-up outside linebacker.

WEAKNESSES: Griffen has lacked in the competitive-fire department. Some scouts feel he occasionally takes plays off, and you can guess how kindly Jets coach Rex Ryan will take to that kind of effort.

MEL KIPER'S TAKE: "Griffen has a chance to be a terror in the Rex Ryan system. He has great size mixed with superior athleticism, and most importantly, his best days are ahead of him. Think Terrell Suggs and Adalius Thomas."

Jane McManus is a columnist for ESPNNewYork.com. You can follow her on Twitter.

Jane McManus has covered New York sports since 1998 and began covering football just before Brett Favre's stint with the Jets. Her work has appeared in Newsday, USA Today, The Journal News and The New York Times. Follow Jane on Twitter.

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