How Tajh Boyd Fits with the New York Jets

Ryan AlfieriCorrespondent IIIMay 10, 2014

Sep 28, 2013; Clemson, SC, USA; Clemson Tigers quarterback Tajh Boyd (10) reacts after the play during the first quarter against the Wake Forest Demon Deacons at Clemson Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports

Even as late as the sixth round, the Jets found a way to spice up the draft by selecting one of the most decorated quarterbacks in Clemson history, Tajh Boyd. 

Prior to the start of the season, Boyd was regarded by many to be a possible first-round pick, right behind Teddy Bridgewater. However, an uneven 2013 campaign that featured some stretches of downright-ugly play from Boyd caused his stock to plummet.

Raw talent has never been the issue with Boyd. While a tad short for the position at 6'1", Boyd showed off his arm talent at his pro day to help save what was left of his draft stock. While he's not quite Johnny Manziel in terms of his mobility, he is not afraid to use his legs and pick up yardage when needed, much like his new teammate Geno Smith. 

Boyd is also willing to take a hit and remains composed when there is pressure around him. A high-character player that is well-liked by his teammates, Boyd fits the profile of the type of person the Jets are willing to bring into their building. 

Boyd is a typical "rhythm" thrower—when he gets hot, he can be difficult to defend, but the other side of his game can be ugly to watch.

When Boyd starts overthinking and aiming his throws, his mechanics go out the window and his decision-making gets worse with every throw he makes. He is calm under pressure, but that does not necessarily mean he winds up making the best decision.

One way to summarize Boyd's downfall in 2013 was that he was exposed as a product of the system around him, not the driving force of the Tigers' offense. He was throwing to two first-round wide receivers (Sammy Watkins and DeAndre Hopkins) for most of his career and was rarely asked to take snaps from under center. 

CLEMSON, SC - NOVEMBER 23: Tajh Boyd #10 of the Clemson Tigers passes during the game against the Citadel Bulldogs at Memorial Stadium on November 23, 2013 in Clemson, South Carolina. (Photo by Tyler Smith/Getty Images)
Tyler Smith/Getty Images

Boyd struggles with the basics of reading defenses. At times, it is almost as if he does not even notice where the safeties are. If a player struggles reading relatively basic college defenses, odds are he will struggle even more against infinitely more complex NFL defenses that operate at an accelerated speed.

He has a lot of work to do in order to be a functioning NFL quarterback, but getting him this late in the draft offers a ton of value as a No. 3 quarterback.

Boyd will compete directly with Matt Simms for the No. 3 quarterback job. Winning the job won't be an easy task, as Simms showed a lot of talent in the preseason last year. 

Boyd will have to earn the job, but one has to think the Jets would prefer to keep the quarterback with more upside in Boyd over Simms, all things equal. If Boyd can harness his talent, clean up his mechanical issues and grasp the finer details of an NFL offense, the sky is the limit for his potential in the NFL.