Stephen Hill was in consideration to be the Jets' first-round pick.
After the Seattle Seahawks took Bruce Irvin 15th overall in the 2012 NFL draft, many of us were baffled at the selection. Analysts such as Len Pasquarelli of the Sports Xchange assured us that Irvin was in the sights of other teams than the Seahawks in the first round. Pasquarelli reports that the Sports Xchange confirmed that the New York Jets, Chicago Bears, Green Bay Packers and San Francisco 49ers all had planned to take Irvin or had Irvin on a "short list" of first-round candidates.
At least one team on that list has been debunked, that is if we take them at their word. According to New York Daily News Jets beat writer Manish Mehta, a source said the Jets "had no intentions of taking at their 16th overall pick." Mehta's source says Irvin might have been a consideration in the late first or early second, but not at No. 16.
"I know it's been reported Bruce Irvin was a guy we wanted over Coples…That’s not true," Ryan said. "I like Bruce Irvin, don’t get me wrong. I really liked him. But the two guys we ended up selecting one and two, we had over him."
That's right—the Jets had Stephen Hill, their eventual second-round pick, ahead of Bruce Irvin on their board, according to Ryan. Mehta reports Ryan even said the team would have considered Hill at 16 because "our guys thought that much of him." Their willingness to give up capital to move up in the second round for Hill corroborates that story.
Perhaps the Jets would have been the team to make the most surprising first-round pick if the Seahawks had taken Quinton Coples instead of Bruce Irvin, except the pick would have been Stephen Hill, not Irvin.