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New York Jets 2008 Draft

Discussion in 'Draft Day Zone' started by Hostile, Apr 7, 2008.

  1. Hostile

    Hostile Tacos are a good investment Zone Supporter

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    1st Round pick #6... DE Vernon Gholston Ohio State

    Overview

    Vernon Gholston is a remarkable talent, but he's only just begun realizing his vast potential.

    He never picked up a football until his sophomore year in high school and had just one season of defensive experience as a linebacker before being converted to defensive end when he arrived at Ohio State.

    Blessed with incredible speed (clocked at 4.56 in the 40-yard dash), long limbs and superb strength, Gholston is the prototype pass rusher that professional teams look for -- big, fast, strong and explosive. An avid performer in the weight room, he boasted the best bench press on the team at 455 pounds. He also put on an impressive performance for teammates, squatting 405 pounds 20 times.

    How Gholston was lured into football will one day make a nice story, if he becomes the legendary pass rusher many personnel experts are predicting. Walking in the halls of Cass Technical High School, football coach Thomas Wilcher spotted the 14-year-old strapping youngster, who stood 6-3, 240 pounds at the time. He convinced the player to join the football team.

    Gholston was too big to play in Detroit's Police Athletic League and the elementary public schools did not offer an organized football program. From the first time he ever stepped on the field, the coaching staff knew they had a natural talent.

    As a sophomore at Cass Tech, Gholston was first tried at linebacker, but he was overwhelmed by the plays he needed to know to play that position. One of the offensive coaches "stole" the youngster away from the defensive squad and had him play offensive guard as a sophomore. His junior campaign was limited by ankle sprains, which forced him to stay on the offensive line and scrap plans to also play linebacker.

    By his senior season, he had already earned All-State honors as an offensive lineman and gained experience playing linebacker for the first time in his career. In just one season on defense, he was regarded as one of the best linebackers in the Midwest region. He would go on to record 75 tackles with six sacks in his final season, as Rivals.com rated him the 11th-best defensive end prospect in the nation and the 12th-best overall prospect in the state of Michigan.

    Gholston enrolled at Ohio State, becoming the only player from Michigan on the squad. He turned down scholarship offers from Michigan, Michigan State and Iowa to join the Buckeyes. The coaching staff immediately began giving him a crash course in playing the "Leo" position, which incorporates dropping into pass coverage and rushing the passer from either side of the field.

    He mentored under Mike Kudla his first year with the team, appearing in six games as a true freshman in 2004, but did not record a tackle. In 2005, a broken hand suffered in the second game vs. Texas earned Gholston a medical hardship. He had one tackle in that game and spent the rest of the year on the sideline.

    Gholston used that time wisely in the weight room, bulking up from 238 to 264 pounds, as he took over "Leo" duties in 2006. He garnered All-Big Ten Conference second-team honors, as he ranked fourth in the league with 15 stops for losses of 86 yards and was fifth in the Big Ten with 8.5 sacks. He added a quarterback pressure with two pass breakups and an interception. He also finished sixth on the squad with 49 tackles (21 solo).

    In 2007, Gholston earned All-American recognition and was a finalist for the Ted Hendricks Award, given to the nation's top defensive end. He posted 37 tackles (25 solo) and was a terror in the backfield, ranking eighth in the nation with 15.5 stops behind the line of scrimmage and second nationally with 14 sacks. He also scooped up a fumble and returned it for a 25-yard touchdown.

    In 34 games at Ohio State, Gholston started 25 times. He registered 87 tackles (47 solo) with 22.5 sacks for minus-184 yards and 30.5 stops for losses of 199 yards. He had two pass deflections and an eight-yard interception return, as he also recovered a fumble that he returned 25 yards for a touchdown.

    • TRADE: The New York Jets have traded into the 30th pick in a deal with the Green Bay Packers. The Jets surrendered the 36th pick and the 114th pick in return.

    • Pick No. 30: New York Jets select Dustin Keller, TE, Purdue

    Pro analysis: This could be the next in a long line of questionable first-round picks by the Jets. Did they really need to trade up six spots for a tight end? On the plus side, Keller could be just the intermediate target to open up the offense for Chad Pennington and/or Kellen Clemens. He better be — or else he join other first-round TE busts Anthony Becht, Johnny Mitchell and Kyle Brady in Jets infamy.

    College analysis: Keller is another player that didn't finish his career where his started. He entered Purdue at a 185-pound wide receiver and finished as one of the top tight ends in the country. After 12 starts as a junior, Keller blossomed in his final year with 68 catches for 881 yards. He also had seven touchdowns, which makes him a good threat in the red zone for the Jets.

    113... Dwight Lowery CB San Jose State

    162... Erik Ainge QB Tennessee

    171... Marcus Henry WR Kansas

    211... Nate Garner OT Arkansas
  2. Juke99

    Juke99 ...Abbey someone

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    Vernon Gholston

    2006: Earned second-team All-Big Ten honors from both the league's coaches and media ... started all 13 games ... 15 tackles behind the line of scrimmage led the team and his 49 tackles led OSU's defensive front (sixth overall) ... those 15 stops accounted for 86 yards in losses and his 7.5 quarterback sacks, which ranked second on the team, resulted in a team-high 66 yards in losses ... snagged his first collegiate interception in the win over Bowling Green when he dropped into coverage along the OSU sideline and stepped in front of a Falcon aerial, which he returned eight yards.

    2005: Suffered a broken left hand in the season opener ... was not ready to return until mid October and was redshirted ... was in contention for a starting spot before being hurt ... was able to practice in the spring and significantly improved all aspects of his game during those 15 practices.

    2004: Recruited as a linebacker, but was switched to defensive end shortly after reporting to fall camp, a move designed to shore up the Buckeyes' defensive front which had lost three of its four starters to the National Football League ... impressed the coaches with his quick grasp of the game and overall athletic ability ... gradually played his way on to the depth chart and moved up to the No. 2 spot behind Mike Kudla ... made his collegiate debut in the season opener against Cincinnati ... also saw action against North Carolina State, Iowa, Indiana, Michigan State and Oklahoma State ... three minutes against Iowa was his longest appearance of the year.

    High School: Was a dominant player in high school and considered one of the top defensive prospects in the Midwest ... totaled 75 tackles, including six sacks, as a senior ... also an all-state selection as an offensive guard his senior year.

    Personal: Son of Cheryl Gholston (his father is deceased) ... has a younger brother, Brandon, who is a high school senior ... enjoys working out, playing all sports and traveling (has been on a cruise and likes beaches and tropical climates).

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