The two first-round picks, both in their rookie seasons, played well; well enough to be elevated to a top line in the third period.

So coach John Tortorella, frustrated by an 0-for-5 power play that cost the Rangers dearly in a 3-1 loss to the Devils on Tuesday night at Prudential Center, and angered by not enough aggressive play, used a question about J.T. Miller and Chris Kreider’s games to threaten changes.

“Absolutely,” Tortorella said when asked if he was pleased about how the speedy rookies played. “They’re probably going to take some people’s jobs. We have some guys that are really playing hard and we have guys that looked scared to me and tentative.”

Tortorella didn’t name names. But that may become clear in the coming days.

The 6-3, 226-pound Kreider, 21, the 19th overall pick in the 2009 draft, played 10:35 and notched his first NHL regular-season point with the Rangers’ lone goal after missing the previous five games with bone chips in his right ankle. He beat Martin Brodeur from the left at 6:28 of the third period, admittedly just closing his eyes and shooting.

“I think it would have [meant something] if we had won,” said Kreider, who had five goals and two assists in 18 playoff games for the Rangers after signing out of Boston College last April. “Obviously, it’s tough to stomach a loss like that.”

The 6-foot-1, 200-pound Miller, the 15th overall pick in the 2011 draft who was recalled from Connecticut (AHL) on Monday, logged 14:25 of ice time, including 4:35 on the power play with two shots.

“I kind of feed off some of the things I do by having the puck on my stick and making plays and just getting touches early was big for the game,” Miller said. “It kind of gave me some confidence to make some more patient plays throughout the game.”