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How Dakota Dozier Fits with the New York Jets

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How Dakota Dozier Fits with the New York Jets
RICHARD SHIRO/Associated Press

With the top need areas on the roster taken care of, the Jets were able to focus their attention on some of their secondary needs, starting with the offensive line by adding Furman product Dakota Dozier in the fifth round.

Coming off the bus, Dozier, who sports a perfect name for his profession, certainly looks the part as an NFL offensive lineman. His 6'4, 313-pound frame is even more impressive considering the amount of muscle on his frame. He has a strong base that allows him to simply overpower the competition he faced at Furman.

Because he was so physically dominant against lesser competition, Dozier did not have to rely on precise technique to dominate on the field, which is something he will have to correct before he gets to the NFL. 

Specifically, Dozier gets sloppy with his footwork and tends to put his hands a bit too low on his opponent. These are easily correctable issues, but it will take some time before he gets used to using this technique at the speed of an NFL game. 

He did also have a tendency to get complacent and play down to his competition in college, but that won't be an issue when he finds himself matched up with the best defensive linemen in the world in the NFL.

Dozier played tackle in college, but his size and lack of elite foot speed makes him a much better fit inside at guard, which is exactly where the Jets need help. 

Michael Conroy/Associated Press

Between the inconsistent play of second-year pro Brian Winters and uncertainty of Willie Colon's torn bicep injury, the Jets need to have players waiting in the wings to take over at any time. The Jets did use two late-round picks on two lineman in last year's draft, Oday Aboushi and William Campbell, but the fact that neither player was able to escape the inactive list hardly exudes confidence from the Jets. 

The fact that the Jets used a fourth-round pick on a developmental lineman only speaks further to their uneasiness regarding the guard position. 

While he was taken a full round later, the Jets will give Dozier a chance to steal a starting spot from Brian Winters if he can pick up the NFL game more quickly than expected. However, it is more realistic for the Jets to expect Dozier to take either Oday Aboushi's or William Campbell's job on the bottom of the roster and slowly work his way closer to the starting lineup from there. 

Ideally, the Jets can move on from the injury-prone Willie Colon after this season and replace him with Dozier without seeing a drop in production. 

A lot has to go his way for him to develop into the caliber of player he is capable of being, but this could wind up as a high-value pick if Dozier can pick up the NFL game quickly. If the Jets can turn a fourth-round pick into a high-level starter within one season, they would have maximized their value with this pick. 

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