2013 NFL Mock Draft 2.0: Predicting the First 10 Selections

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9. New York Jets: Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia

Dec 29, 2012; Bronx, NY, USA; West Virginia Mountaineers quarterback Geno Smith (12) drops back to pass during the second quarter against the Syracuse Orange at the 2012 New Era Pinstripe Bowl at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Rex Ryan seems to be invested in the erratic Mark Sanchez, but if Smith is available, the Jets could take the explosive signal-caller.

There is no Peyton Manning or Tom Brady in this draft class, but Smith has potential and could thrive in New York. He could push Mark Sanchez to do better, as some healthy competition couldn’t hurt Sanchez. The Jets already have a solid team, as they went 6-10 in 2012, 8-8 in 2011 and 11-5 in 201.

And, with Smith, who threw 42 touchdowns and just six interceptions in 2012, the Jets can contend for a playoff berth.

While there are other needs (such as linebacker), with Jordan and Jones off the board and the chance to take a playmaker at quarterback, the Jets will opt to draft Smith. Taking Lane Johnson from Oklahoma to shore up the offensive line isn’t out of the question at all, but a quarterback can change New York’s fortunes.

And the front office should be able to recognize that.