The Jets are in desperate need of a cornerback, and Kindle Vildor could be a sleeper pick in the late rounds of the 2020 NFL Draft.
The Jets need to get the top of the 2020 NFL Draft to be successful. They have done that in the past. What separates the Jets’ failures from the successes of others is the ability to hit on Days 2 and 3.
Finding hidden gems in the draft and coaching. So, if New York were to draft a player like Kindle Vildor in the late rounds, both his ability and Dennard Wilson (the team’s defensive backs coach) will be key to success with this pick.
Vildor will definitely be a sleeper pick for whoever takes him. So, what does he bring to the table? Let’s examine.
Vildor is an excellent ball tracker. He can find the ball in the air and play the ball rather than the man once the ball is in the air. He does well to make sure his head is turned with the ball in the air to avoid the pass interference call and to either intercept or knock the ball down.
The one red flag is, like many outside of the FBS landscape, the level of competition. People will question his ability, even though he did step up his game when playing FBS opponents.
He’s a little handsy before the ball is in the air. At the NFL level, that may draw some illegal contact penalties early.
LeBron James is often criticized for passing the ball in late-game situations rather than taking the shot himself. A lot of those times passing the ball is the right thing to do at the moment. Vildor certainly doesn’t have much LeBron in him. He’s the polar opposite.
He wants to flash on your screen and make the spectacular play that ends up on sports highlight reels rather than the correct play the won’t get noticed by the average fan or the camera. That will result in Vildor allowing many explosive plays in the NFL, and he will need to work hard to escape that mentality.
Despite having a huge weakness at cornerback, the Jets blitzed on 39.2% of their defensive snaps in 2019. That was fourth-highest in the NFL. If they improve their man-to-man coverage in 2020, expect that number to go up.
Vildor has good speed to stay with receivers, and if he gets beat, he also has good recovery speed. As a quality man corner, he’d be a fit for what Williams wants to do — blitz and blitz often.
Vildor is a Day 3 pick. The main reason for this is the level of competition. However, if the Jets can pick him up and work the weaknesses out of his game, they will get a steal with one of the sixth-round picks.