Two words make Jets fans queasy when they think about the NFL Draft and the prospects of how their team will use the No. 16 pick next Thursday: Vernon Gholston.
Gholston, the sixth-overall pick in the 2008 NFL Draft, was the greatest bust to hit a franchise with some notorious misses in the draft.
General manager Mike Tannenbaum was candid about the mistake in the team’s pre-draft press conference Thursday.
“We all make mistakes. We’re going to learn from ours,” Tannenbaum said. “There [were] a lot of things we liked about Vernon, [such as] his measurables, his production. Obviously, it didn’t work out. Why it didn’t? We’ve looked at that quite a bit.
“From where I sit in the world, it’s most important that we learn from it and obviously do everything we can so it doesn’t happen again.”
The Jets have been linked to drafting along the defensive line or outside linebacker. With the memory of Gholston still fresh, personnel consultant Terry Bradway isn’t afraid to draft another outside linebacker.
Even if that means that drafting a college defensive lineman and converting him to linebacker, just like Gholston.
“I think that’s a position we’ve been looking at. We’ve got two players in Calvin Pace and Bryan Thomas back and we feel good about both of those guys. We’d just like to add a little depth,” Bradway said. “When you look at it, I think seven of the eight outside linebackers on our board were all college defensive ends.”
Follow Jets beat writer Kristian Dyer on Twitter @KristianRDyer for team news leading up to next week’s draft.