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Attention, Dee Milliner: Jets' former No. 1 picks aren't safe

Now that Quinton Coples is gone, we're left to wonder: Which former high draft pick moves to the hot seat?

You're the next man up, Dee Milliner.

In case you missed it, Milliner was inactive Sunday in the New York Jets' loss to the Houston Texans. The former first-round pick was, in the words of Todd Bowles, a "healthy scratch." The coach explained.

"He was sick all last week, so he missed a lot of practice time and when he came back Friday, everything was already etched in stone," Bowles said.

It's true, Milliner missed the Wednesday and Thursday practices with an illness, but he was listed as probable for the game. The Jets dressed six cornerbacks, and it speaks volumes that Milliner -- the ninth pick in the 2013 draft -- couldn't crack the top six, even with the missed practice time.

Coaches will re-etch the stone, if you will, to accommodate a good player. Look at Sheldon Richardson. When his four-game suspension was complete, he was thrown into a full-time role after only one week of practice. Milliner? He couldn't beat out Dexter McDougle on the game-day 46.

The injury-plagued Milliner isn't in danger of cutting cut, at least not this season. His 2016 salary, the final year of his rookie contract, is fully guaranteed -- $2.1 million. That includes a $1.46 million roster bonus. Teams are hesitant to eat guaranteed money, so that works in his favor.

This season has been a washout for Milliner, who underwent wrist surgery in the preseason and spent the first eight games on short-term injury reserve. If the front office views him as some sort of ace in the hole, a potential 2016 replacement for Antonio Cromartie (a likely cap casualty), it'll be a mistake. I spoke to two talent evaluators about Milliner, one of whom studied him closely at Alabama. Neither one called him as an elite talent. They both said he doesn't possess the quick-twitch athleticism to thrive in a man-to-man scheme.

I suspect Bowles and general manager Mike Maccagnan have the same concerns about Milliner. We found out Monday they're not afraid to dump a highly drafted player, especially one drafted by the previous regime.