CORTLAND, NY — The New York Jets 2014 season has officially begun as they opened up training camp on Thursday. With high expectations coming into this season the Jets have once again made the trek up north to the quiet little town of Cortland, New York. As any first day would go there were ups and downs but overall a productive day for the green and white. “Today I thought was an impressive day.” Rex Ryan said to the media in his post-practice press conference. Ryan also added “We are a zillion miles ahead of where we were last year.” Ryan also said the day before that this is the first time every member of his team has past the conditioning test, which for one means that his squad is focused and is ready to go this season. Here is what we learned on day 1 of camp.
Eric Decker is the Real Deal
New Jet Eric Decker was impressive on his first day of training camp. (JetsInsider.com Photo)
Eric Decker is head and shoulders this best wide receiver on this team. The way he runs routes and catches balls is just phenomenal. It is also something the Jets have not had in a long time. In the 7 on 7 periods he made a number of outstanding grabs but one stood out above all else. He ran a streak down the left sideline, one on one against Dee Milliner, and adjusted his body to make the leaping catch. However not everything came easy to Decker as he joked, “I got lost (on his way to practice) but I learned the hard way, they gave us a map but obviously that didn’t work.” Decker also mentioned, “It’s just good to get out there and get back to football.”
It’s Geno’s Team
QB Geno Smith coming into his second year is much more comfortable and confident than last year. You can see it on and off the field. He was barking at receivers to get lined up in the right spots, making sure everything was correct with the play calls, which is what you want to see out of a starting quarterback. David Nelson even noticed it on the field today as he said, “This is Geno’s team and you can see that in the way he goes out, just the small stuff, him putting us in the right positions and that is what we want from him.” Smith was also on point with most of his throws as he hit a number of receivers in practice. “We got some good work in, I like how we came out today, but there are some things we can clean up throughout the week.”
The Defensive Line is Legit
The position that has the most talent on the team is the defensive line, and they know it. Jokingly while all walking onto the field together the entire defensive line posed for a picture with the media. This defensive line cannot only walk the walk but they can talk the talk. Getting after it all day in practice, the defensive line had a number of sacks and hurries as they disrupted the backfield all day. They are really going to be a force to be reckoned with this season as they have a number of young talented guys up front not to mention the addition of former pro-bowler Jason Babin you could say this defensive line is in store for a great season to say the least.
Dexter McDougle The Third Round Wonder
When the Jets drafted CB Dexter McDougle in the 3rd round out of Maryland it was a bit of a head scratcher because he was hurt for most of last season due to a shoulder injury. But whoever scouted him might have found a gem because McDougle is looking to prove everyone wrong in his first professional training camp. McDougle had a number of good plays as he broke up a few passes and even had an acrobatic interception during the 11 on 11 periods. McDougle who is coming off shoulder surgery is going to have a good camp if he wants to see some playing time this season and if today was any indication of how he is going to play this season he might just find his way into the starting lineup.
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