Archive for August, 2014

Jets Conclude Preseason — Raiders On Tap To Begin 2014 NFL Season

Friday, August 29th, 2014

PHILADELPHIA, PA — The New York Jets’ will now have to turn their attention to assembling the best 53-man roster that Gang Green can move forward with.

Jets Owner Woody Johnson will see his team cut down to 53-men once the NFL deadline of Saturday at 6 p.m. passes (JetsInsider.com Photo)

That is with Head Coach Rex Ryan and General Manager John Idzik having 22 spots to clear in two days by Saturday August 30, to officially abide the league wide mandate to cut rosters down by 6 p.m. on the deadline date.

Thursday night was a reunion fest of sorts for the backups as the Jets never got reacquainted with former starter, the much maligned Mark Sanchez and former Eagle, Michael Vick, was literally pulled after one handoff snap — a classy move by Rex Ryan, which allowed Vick to get a standing ovation by the crowd in Lincoln Financial Field.

It was a fitting tribute by fans for Vick’s five years of service to the team which gave him his second shot at an NFL career. But for all the catching up and good sentiment with finally being done with the preseason, the Jets must shift its focus with only ten days remaining from tonight’s 37-7 loss and a date with the Oakland Raiders on September 7.

“It’s kind of tough to say because it’s week to week,” said Linebacker Demario Davis on the state of the Jets defense. “Were improving but we feel confident about our identity.”

When asked about the method of preparation for the team leading up to the season, during the Jets-Eagles CBS telecast Davis responded “It’s football season and its time, everyone’s ready to play.”

The contest could have been a telling sign or just smoke and mirrors with those seemingly fighting for the sacred final roster spots. Take Stephen Hill for example.

The spotlight has squarely been on the 2012 second round pick (infamously picked ahead of emerging Bears’ star Alshon Jeffrey) or his hands lack thereof. Hill caught a 13-yard reception for a first down but also dropped the first target his way causing all too familiar request of fans for Hill to extend his hands on a more consistent basis.

His night was done after appearing in five of the Jets’ six possessions in the first half raising questions as to whether this would be the swan song for the disappointing 23-year old’s career with the team.

Matt Simms, who got the majority of the snaps in tonight’s game missed Greg Salas twice in the end zone on overthrows so Salas did not do anything to warrant him not making the team.

The team is said to probably keep around five or six receivers and Hill is competing with Greg Salas and Saalim Hakim for the final one or two spots (as Decker, Kerley and Nelson are locks with Gates as the odd man out overall).

Salas and Hakim play on special teams and Hill does not which may end up counting against the third-year wideout. For the final ‘tryout’ to make the final 53-man roster, essentially Jets players just had to show what they can do, while the proverbial locks and first teamers encouraged them while also letting the backups know what they could do better.

One of those players who did not look good in his audition at all was LeQuan Lewis. Lewis noted as a key player coming into the game – struggled mightily. It was easily to see why Lewis has been a journeyman in the NFL, playing for nine professional teams in four seasons.

After being picked up by the Jets during training camp (prior to the secondary being depleted with injury) it was assumed that Lewis was acquired to help with depth.

This was before Gang Green reached full emergency status after converted safety turned corner Antonio Allen suffered a concussion last Friday against the Giants and with the status of Dimitri Patterson being up in the air.

Lewis given his shot starting opposite Ellis Lankster (who struggled in his own right with two holding penalties and being blown away on routes). While Lewis had an interception in the end zone, he did not make a case for being an option as a stop-gap starter until Dee Milliner returns, as he fell susceptible to the deep ball being beaten for a 32-yard gain and a 43-yard touchdown on the night.

Note

Special teams ace, Linebacker Nick Bellore was down on the field temporarily as trainers checked on his lower let leg but he eventually walked off the field under his own power (the team later announced it was a calf injury)

Dmitri Patterson’s status with the final 53-man roster is still up in the air especially after Patterson came out and refuted the team’s claim that he was AWOL for 48 hours prior to and after the ‘Snoopy Bowl’ against the Giants

The Eagles racked up 557 yards of total offense (292 passing and 265 rushing)

Stat of the night or Ominous sign?: 4 catches for Jalen Saunders tonight, were more than Stephen Hill had all pre-season in 5 times as many reps

After the game Rex Ryan was not pleased with the team’s overall performance, telling reporters “Its hard to really hard to pinpoint who stood stepped up. It was a poor performance by us, without question.”

Jets’ Are Now Down to 75

Sunday, August 24th, 2014

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — As of noon today, the New York Jets announced that they’ve reduced their roster from 81 players to 75 now by releasing the players below.

All NFL teams must reduce their roster to a maximum of 75 players by 4:00 p.m. on Tuesday, August 26 so the Jets got a headstart on the process of ultimately cutting down to a 53-man roster by the league-wide mandated deadline of August 30. The following players are no longer with the Jets –

Colin Anderson (TE/6-4/240/Furman/Dallas, TX)

Mike Campbell (WR/6-2/205/Temple/Edison, NJ)

Ras-I Dowling (CB/6-1/210/Virginia/Chesapeake, VA)

Jacoby Ford is the most surprising name to appear on the cut list as he was expected to compete for starting special teams roles (JetsInsider.com Photo)

Jacoby Ford (WR/5-9/190/Clemson/West Palm Beach, FL)

Anthony Grady (DE/6-7/289/Missouri State/Texarkana, AR)

Chad Young (FB/5-10/240/San Diego State/La Verne, CA)

To recap prior to these six, seven were released to begin the final maturation process of forming the 2014-2015 Jets roster.

Bruce Campbell (T/6-6/320/Maryland/Hamden, CT)

Steele Divitto (LB/6-2/237/Boston College/Ridgefield, CT)

Patrick Ford (OL/6-6/305/Eastern Kentucky/Richmond, KY)

Andrew Furney (K/5-10/210/Washington State/Burlington, WA)

Jacob Schum (P/5-11/211/Buffalo/Hamburg, NY)

Michael Smith (RB/5-9/205/Utah State/Tucson, AZ)

Markus Zusevics (OL/6-5/300/Iowa/Arlington Heights, IL)

The biggest surprise of the names released thus far would have to be Jacoby Ford, who headlines the list of players who will no longer be with Gang Green because was expected to compete for a roster spot as the 5th/6th receiver behind Eric Decker, Jeremy Kerley, David Nelson and Stephen Hill coming into camp.

But the despite the recent injuries to Shaq Evans and Jalen Saunders, the emergence of Greg Salas and Clyde Gates have solified them as the 5th and 6th men of the receiving corps.

Ford was expected to at least compete for the starting gigs on special teams for punt and kick returns but his game against the Giants did not help his cause in that manner. Ford muffed a punt against the Giants, and despite his speed the overall competition at wideout this summer in camp made his services expendable.

The Jets’ roster stands at 75, not counting those on injured reserve — cornerback Dexter McDougle and as mentioned previously Shaq Evans. Antwan Barnes, a linebacker who’s on the physically-unable-to-perform (PUP) list, currently counts for a roster spot.

The Jets have 22 more cuts to make by next Saturday. The process to 53 will come with some very interesting, difficult and debatable decisions to come. It will be intriguing to see how the Jets move forward toward the big day of August 30.

Snoopy Bowl Fireworks to Come – Jets v. Giants

Friday, August 22nd, 2014

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — The New York Jets (2-0) and New York Giants (3-0) face off tonight at MetLife Stadium in the 4th annual ‘Snoopy Bowl’ game for citywide bragging rights. It is the only time this season that both teams will go up against one another as by NFL divisional rotations on the schedule, the Jets and Giants only draw each other once every four years. For the game Gang Green will be the ‘home team’ in hosting Big Blue.

Head Coach Rex Ryan and Off. Coordinator Marty Mornhinweg look to see positive gains from offense in benchmark preseason game against in-stadium rival Giants (Jetsinsider.com Photo)

Although both teams come into action undefeated, both sides have not played up the level that their record suggests. In fact both MetLife occupants rallied down from 20+ point deficits in week 2 preseason games on the Rose against Cincinnati (Jets) and Indianapolis (Giants) respectively.

The Jets had a penalty filled fest when the starters were in primarily from Breno Giacomini, Willie Colon and Stephen Hill en route to their 25-17 win over the Bengals. Seven personal fouls in total were racked up costing the team several yards along the way and a 17-3 deficit before the 22-point turnaround.

The Giants were down 26-0 in Lucas Oil Stadium and on the verge of a disastrous effort in their benchmark preseason game at the halfway point of their schedule.

Eli Manning was 1-7 at one point and threw an interception drawing much concern over the state of the new West Coast offense that the team is operating under now since the departure of former Offensive Coordinator, Kevin Gilbride despite their stunning comeback led by the heroics of backup Quarterback Ryan Nassib.

Andre Williams started off the fireworks for tonight’s game by firing off the first round of bulletin board material saying that the Giants were the “real football team of New York.”

Since then Damon ‘Snacks’ Harrison and Willie Colon have responded to the Boston College rookie’s claim, Willie Colon’s response to Andre (Loose Lips) Williams: “We’ll answer his remarks (tonight).” As well as Jets Head Coach, Rex Ryan, telling reporters “Last time I remember him, he was getting smacked around by Clemson.”

Damon Harrison’s repsonse – an emoji featuring a head laughing four times and a see you Friday Mr. Williams ##JetLifeeeeee response.

Don’t tell these players that the ‘Snoopy Bow’ doesn’t count — there is added juice anytime to teams which share the same stadium play, sentiments Wideout David Nelson echoed. “All week long, guys have been talking about it,” Nelson said. “This is a preseason game, but there’s definitely a different feel. It’s not just the third preseason game, it’s the Giants. Rex and a couple of coaches have made it known this is a big game for us. Even though it doesn’t count for anything, it’s still for bragging rights. To have that trophy, or whatever you want to call it, guys play for stuff like that. It adds a little extra motivation.”

For what it’s worth according to an ESPN @SportsNation poll which asked the question: Which is the real NY football team? (Courtesy of Andre Williams): the response was Giants 66%, Jets 34%. The Giants have the Lombardis and the Jets have the motivation of not wanting to be dubbed the ‘little brother’ resident of MetLife — get ready for some fireworks New York.

Whirlwind Around Jets Player Personnel

Wednesday, August 20th, 2014

Florham Park, NJ — On a hot and humid day in Florham Park, the Jets held day 2 of practices at the Atlantic health facility and day 27 overall.

Here’s what we learned: Receivers in the spotlight — For the Jets Tuesday ended up being a mixed bag with some positive on the field and less than ideal off it. Shaq Evans is out for the season, as the team announced today they’ve placed the rookie wideout on Injured Reserve after undergoing season-ending shoulder surgery.

Shaq Evans is the latest Jets rookie to be afflicted with the injury bug (Jetsinsider.com photo)

“There’s more to it than that, so obviously he got hit and then he really never felt the effects until later. He had a shoulder (injury) before, but this one was worse,” said Rex Ryan.

“He recognizes these things because he’s had shoulder (injuries) before, but he said this one felt worse and it just never got better to where he could go out and play.”

While fellow rookie receiver Jalen Saunders made waves with his status, posting on Instagram (“Minor setback for a major comeback !!” #belivethat — @jet16life) The 2014 rookie class has had its fair share of bouts with the injury bug.

The Louisville Slugger, 1st round pick Safety Calvin Pryor just made his NFL debut off dealing with concussion issues, second round pick Jace Amaro, has also battled a concussion, the play book and at times his own hands, third-rounder Dexter McDougle is out for the year with a torn ACL and now Evans and Saunders being out for an extended period of time — welcome to the league rooks.

Day Two: At practice wideouts mostly worked on a ten-man teams. Of note there was a spectacular one-handed catch by Greg Salas who with his play is garnering steam toward making the #3 spot behind Eric Decker & Jeremy Kerley an intriguing competition heading into to the tail stretch of camp.

On Wide Receiver drills, with the Jets staff throwing the passes, Greg Salas made a ridiculous one-handed catch down sidelines palming the ball in aesthetic fashion. Geno did look impressive at the helm, dialed in as a signal-caller in dropping most passes with perfect placement. A perfect example of this was when Geno hit Eric Decker 40 yards down the sideline, perfectly placing on Decker’s inside shoulder with the rookie Brandon Dixon on coverage.

Snoopy Bowl Plans: Head Coach Rex Ryan after practice said that he plans to stick with his traditional philosophy of playing his starters the entire first half and for one drive into the third quarter.

“I know that’s crazy, but it kind of gets you used to coming back in, getting a little rest time at half time, and then coming back out and you have to play. That’s always what I’ve done in the past,” said Ryan.

Cincinnati Remains:

After the win in Cincinnati, some in the Bengals organization accused the Jets of ‘bush league’ play; as they referenced being thrown off by Jets’ starters blitzing late in the game. In response to such accusations Ryan said the team wasn’t aware of the chatter and certainly had no ill intentions in its play.

“No, I thought they’d probably be surprised that we played nothing but coverage early in the game. I’m trying to see what we had. Maybe that was probably the big surprise, but again, our starters they never played into the second half,” Ryan said.

“They played in the first half and that’s where we played our guys. That’s from day one. I don’t know why they would be shocked, but again, it doesn’t matter. I don’t worry about their team. We’re just trying to focus on our team and what’s best for us.”

Notes:

Ras I Dowling, Patterson, Ivory & Mangold were all back in practice despite being listed as ‘limited’

Geno Smith is slated to start Friday night, according to Coach Rex Ryan. He will play 2+ quarters possibly into 3rd with starters

Coach Ryan feels both Eric Decker (quad) & Chris Ivory (ribs) will be active for the ‘Snoopy Bowl’ vs the Giants after missing game in Cincinnati

On Santonio Holmes being signed by the Bears, Coach Ryan alluded to the Lisfranc injury, derailing a great start to his time in New York Rex says he was really impressed with Darrin Walls in Saturday’s game and that he deserves some reps with the 1st team

Cumberland was out today with the TEs, taking part in positional drills

Jalen Saunders will talk to the media tomorrow to address the growing mystery surrounding his status

Jets unbeaten in pre-season, but many problems persist

Sunday, August 17th, 2014

CINCINNATI, OH — Another game and another win for the New York Jets in the 2014 NFL preseason. But a 2-0 start will not dissipate the firestorm of questions at Cornerback nor the secondary for the Jets.

A two touchdown deficit for Gang Green turned into 22 unanswered points as the Jets avoided an encore of October 27, 2013 (the day which marked the worst point margin loss of the Rex Ryan tenure – 40 points in a 49-9 forgetful loss at Paul Brown Stadium).

Many roster based questions to be answered for Jets GM John Idzik (Left) and Head Coach Rex Ryan (Right) (Jetsinsider.com Photo)

After their conquest in Cincinnati, there remains leery concern about the offense, confidence in the front seven but worry on how Gang Green will ultimately go forward in filling the holes in the back end of the defense.

It started almost eerily similar to that October late afternoon when Bengals Quarterback Andy Dalton had a career day en route to connecting with Wide Receiver Marvin Jones on Five touchdown on the day — no that is not a misprint Jets fans.

Saturday evening was almost no different as before departing the game, Dalton finished with a flawless stat line — 8 for 8 on pass attempts, 144 passing yards on 1 touchdown pass to Mohamed Sanu.

Dalton shone through effectively shredded the Jets’ secondary with a no huddle quick paced offense beating the secondary constantly over the top and around the edges.

Antonio Allen despite only being targeted once in his first career action as a Cornerback and the embattled Kyle Wilson were picked on by arguably the best receiver in the NFL, A.J. Green and Sanu — to the tune of 3 receptions for 69 yards (23 yards per recption on 3 targets) for Green and 2 receptions for 56 yards (28 yards per reception on 2 targets) for Sanu.

After the game Rex Ryan critique his injury-riddled secondary by saying — “Andy Dalton looked like a $100 million Quarterback.”

When facing the Bengals starters in the game, Cincinnati scored two touchdowns and a field goal in three series on the Jets. Kyle Wilson continues to struggle playing the nickel giving up a 43-yard touchdown reception to Sanu as Dawan Landry came late on the deep help. Dee Milliner’s health is needed by the team now more than ever as the Jets head toward the benchmark third game of preseason action.

Some good news in the midst of all the first-team defensive struggles was the emergence of the ‘Louisville Slugger’, Calvin Pryor in his NFL debut. The rookie first-round safety made his impact know early and often.

From recovering a strip-sack fumble on his 3rd NFL play by fellow teammate Demario Davis to hammering Bengals receiver Cobi Hamilton on a pass play; the flying around and big hits were what the team envisioned when they selected the Louisville product 18th overall in the 2014 NFL Draft.

Pryor did not get a chance to start and was eased in his first real-time game action, but he did get some work with the first team (which played the entire first half) despite not going up against the tough combination of Dalton & Green.

Chris Johnson, formerly of ‘CJ2k’ artistry, was a positive displaying some of his old burst. 63 yards on 10 carries running out of the pistol formation found holes through the middle and out on the corner edges. The running backs were a position of strength which told a lot about the o-line’s performance despite the alarming number of penalties that they accrued.

12 Penalties in total for 133 yards, including a whopping seven personal fouls mostly committed by the offensive line combo of Breno Giacomini, Brian Winters and Willie Colon. They showed flashes playing with a nasty edge and chip on their shoulders, but at times the aggression was costly as they lost their cool in scuffles early and often.

Geno Smith did not do anything with his play to create any noise around a scarce semblance of a Quarterback controversy around the Jets. Playing the entire first half for a total of 31 plays, Geno’s only glaring mistake was a miscommunication with receiver David Nelson which was picked off  by the Bengals’ Terrence Newman.

Smith did use his head and legs at times of pressure against Cincy’s D, continuing what made him very successful last December –making good decisions to spark the offense and checking down to second and third reads from the pocket and running when it was necessary to.

He was 10 for 13 overall for 98 yards in 6 series for two touchdowns and a field goal to pull the Jets within one (17-16, the extra point attempt was no good). Michael Vick was 5 for 9 for 70 yards and a 17-yard touchdown pass to Clyde Gates which took the lead for good.

Notes

Rookie wideout Jalen Saunders is still in the hospitall according to Head Coach Rex Ryan

Rookie IK Enemkpali blocked a punt out of the end zone for the safety, (first since 2010) which made the final score 25-17. He’s been making impact plays each week on special teams making it increasingly difficult for the team to cut him

Cornerback Ras I-Dowling ruled out with a groin injury

Jets used Winters at RG and Aboushi at RT rotating them after Aboushi started for Winters at LG

Star wideout Eric Decker was a late scratch against the Bengals (Quad)

Cumberland missed the action with an (Achilles) injury

Chris Ivory did not play due to his ribs

Bilal Powell had a nice cutback on his 2-yard touchdown run in the second quarter

Quinton Coples was noticeably on the sidelines for a few series

The Jets (2-0) will be the host against inter-stadium rival Giants (3-0) in the annual battle of New York preseason contest at Metlife Stadium on Friday August 22

The Road From Cortland to Cincinnati

Thursday, August 14th, 2014

FLORHAM PARK, NJ — The second phase of camp has turned to the Jets finishing up their annual portion of training camp in Cortland, NY. The team now heads to Paul Brown Stadium to face off against another playoff team from last season in the defending AFC North champion Bengals.

Sheldon Richardson vows for the Jets D' to have a different outcome this time around in Cincinnati (Jetsinsider.com photo)

Geno on the spot

When the Jets acquired Michael Vick in free agency many people thought he’d have a legitimate shot to win the job. However through camp the team has shown otherwise despite what’s been called an open competition numerous times by GM John Idzik and Head Coach Rex Ryan.

The Jets’ brass drafted Smith in the second round of the 2013 NFL Draft to be the ‘guy’. Smith made a big leap forward in his the final four games of his rookie year.

For Geno, the greatest thing the team wants to see from him is consistency. In order to further consistent play from him it begins with the ‘others’ around him. Is it there with Eric Decker? Can the Jets run the football behind him with Chris Ivory & Johnson? Can Marty Morningweg design the offense to get people open in space.

Before those questions can be answered, the Quarterback answered another — overcoming less than ideal conditions. Battling ugly weather this week in Cortland has been a benefit to the offense, as Geno Smith told nyjets.com — the elements were helpful for insight and preparation to the kinds of scenarios the team could have to play through this season.

“Any time we get in the red zone, guys are animated just because our offensive linemen and defensive linemen take pride in that, getting in the end zone,” Smith said. “It was very animated. I think the weather kind of boosted everyone up a little bit.”

Bengal’ revenge

Although its preseason, don’t tell that to the Jets who want to bounce back from the worst loss in Rex Ryan’s tenure on October 27, losing by 40 to the same team they’ll see Saturday night.

Time to hit the ‘big leagues’

Safety turned Cornerback Antonio Allen is slated to start for the Jets’ on Saturday. His first test? Against all-pro Wideout, the Bengals’ A.J. Green.

Coach Rex Ryan has confidence in Allen’s ability to hold his own adding “If Allen can effectively cover Green, he can cover them all.”

Allen’s versatility gives the team belief that he can hold down the fort until Dee Milliner returns from injury. Allen, was once a hybrid linebacker at South Carolina, prior to being drafted in the seventh round by the Jets in 2012.

When teammates go out in front of you, it’s an opportunity to step up and for Allen there’s on bigger challenge than going up against one of the league’s best.

ALS Challenge

The Jets’ became the latest NFL team to participate in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge mania which has swept the nation. The Cortlandville Fire Department supplied the materials to help drench the team with cold water as fans in attendance cheered on.

Ironically the Jets were nominated for the ALS Challenge by their greatest in recent years, the New England Patriots. On being chosen for ice cold water treatment on a summer afternoon, Rex Ryan appreciated the Patriots choice.

“Anytime you get issued a challenge by New England, we’re going to accept that challenge,” Ryan said.

The Jets have nominated the team’s flight crew to continue the nationwide challenge and awareness effort for ALS.

Notes

According to Bengals.com, Head Coach Marvin Lewis said at practice Thursday that Quarterback Andy Dalton is going to play around 15 to 25 snaps (First quarter plus) against the Jets and its doubtful that backup Jason Campbell plays this week

This will be the first time the Jets play the Bengals in Cincinnati since the Bengals defeated Gang Green 49-9 in October

With the players and NFLPA lobbying for just two preseason games, training camps of the future may include fewer games and more intersquad scrimmages (like the ones we’ve seen the Cowboys partake in with the Raiders and Patriots employ with the Eagles and Redskins)

Jets remain optimistic amid Cornerback woes

Monday, August 11th, 2014

CORTLAND, NY — With news of Dexter McDougle’s torn ACL, Dimitri Patterson battling calf and ankle ailments in pads working with trainers and now Dee Milliner’s high-ankle sprain rendering him in a walking boot and out for the next 3-4 weeks, the current state of the Jets secondary is less than ideal.

Which is why much attention and eyes have turned to Jets GM John Idzik and his decision in the off-season not to get a more established veteran name in free agency; with the team reportedly having $21.7M in cap room according to espnnewyork.com.

All eyes on Jets' GM John Idzik's plans to aide recent secondary woes (JetsInsider.com Photo)

“I don’t think immediate spending translates into winning,” Idzik said to reporters after practice. “I think responsible spending translates into sustainable winning.”

To reiterate his stance on how he felt when asked about not signing established free-agent cornerbacks this offseason —  he replied, “We have no regrets whatsoever.”

While Dee Milliner’s status remains uncertain for Week 1, the Jets tried a new attempt at finding some semblance of normalcy at the position — through trying out Safety Antonio Allen along with Ellis Lankster at Corner back during practice.

Allen came in and performed immensely well grabbing two interceptions on the day. He was able to run step for step down the sideline flanking Stephen Hill as an outside Corner back.

From the top, the Jets continue to show unwavering confidence in their ability to weather the storm and overcoming the bevy of challenges that’s come the way of the backend of the defense.

“This is going to work,” said Coach Rex Ryan. “One thing we know for a fact is this is going to be an outstanding defense.”

And coming off being the 19th ranked defense scoring defense  and 22nd in passing yards allowed last season, one concern with the secondary is that teams will be looking to spread the ball out with max receiver formations against the Jets’ defense. In any fashion from short outs, curls and over the top.

Notes

Jets owner Woody Johnson for the first time in Cortland appeared at camp

The team plans on working out free agent Cornerbacks (like four-time Pro Bowler Asante Samuel?) as a contingent plan

Eric Decker (quad) took part in positional drills, but sat out team drills

Jets RB Chris Ivory is still unsure if he’ll play vs Bengals on Saturday

C Nick Mangold, who missed previous practices on paternity leave, was back at practice

Today was mascot day at Jets practice as the team hosted nine college mascots

Second round of training camp

Saturday, August 9th, 2014

CORTLAND, NY —  After every first game of the preseason kicks off the transition into the next phase of preparation for week one of the NFL season.

Hard to believe its already been 17 days in Cortland, but the Jets were back in action after their compelling 13-10 victory over the Indianapolis Colts on Thursday night.

The shift in focus at camp now turns to six days of preparation before Gang Green travels to Cincinnati to face off against the Bengals in week 2 of the preseason.

The Jets although victorious, emerged from the game a bit banged up losing Chris Ivory in the game to a rib injury and already dealing with Bilal Powell missing the game due to a hamstring ailment.

After preseason games, the focus usually turns to any lineup changes and adjustments that coaches may make due to notable impacts in performances from hotly contested position battles.

The Tim Tebow era is back! Well not quite. Two years later the Jets’ are finally implenting the wildcat package into its offense as what the team is calling a routine installation in training camp preparation. Despite running only two read-option plays in the opener, the Jets used the wildcat scarcely last season as a change of pace dynamic.

Jets turn focus to Bengals after defeating Colts in preseason opener (JetsInsider.com photo)

Perhaps the most telling event from Thursday’s action was the Jets secondary. With both Darrelle Revis’s high profile departure along with Antonio Cromartie now in the desert and the team drafting Dee Milliner high in the first round to be the replacement for ‘Revis Island’, there is pressure for the Jets’ to find an adequate sidekick for Milliner.

Dimitri Patterson’s debut was less than stellar on that front, giving up a 45 yard reception and 2 catches for 60 yards on the day. His play magnified a first drive where Andrew Luck completed four of five passes for 53 yards on his only series despite a bad shotgun snap at the Jets’ goal line (which led to a Colts field goal).

Third-round pick Dexter McDougle, as a result of Patterson sitting out with calf and ankle injuries took the majority of first-team reps at corner, but don’t expect this to last as after practice Coach Rex Ryan said he expects Patterson to overcome his early struggles and be at his best when the season begins.

First-round pick Calvin Pryor, sat out the opener at Metlife recovering from a concussion but he worked with the second team defense today and impacted practice almost coming up with an interception.

Taking things lightly was theme for today as Chris Ivory was on the field in shorts, not pads. Participating in limited fashion in walk-throughs but not in team drills. Eric Decker did not practice because of a nagging quadriceps injury, Chris Johnson rested through team drills and Alex Green got many of his reps.

Great news from Jets camp as pro bowl mainstay, Center Nick Mangold was excused from practice for personal reasons (his wife gave birth!).

Jets return to action

Monday, August 4th, 2014

CORTLAND, NY — With the first preseason action of the 2014 season set to kick off in less than three days, the Jets find themselves back at MetLife Stadium hosting a home game for the first time since December against the Colts this Thursday.

Coming off of the annual green and white scrimmage with Gang Green’s offense facing off against its defensive counterparts, for players like rookie Calvin Pryor, getting back into the fold of practice after extended time off was an adjustment on the day (albeit in limited fashion).

“I felt a little rusty. I feel a little rusty, but it was good to be back in there with the guys, getting in making some of the checks, making sure you’re on top of everything,” said Pryor.

Rookies like Calvin Pryor adjust to daily grind of NFL action (jetsinsider.com photo)

Both he and the team are taking a day-by-day approach as far as his status for the preseason opener against the Colts. As far as his progression, Pryor does not expect any unforseen setbacks.

“I think I’ll be fine from here on out, I’ll Just keep checking in with the doctors, making sure I’m good to go,” Pryor said.

To avoid falling behind in defensive schemes, Pryor has his way of staying in the game while being inactive.

“Just making sure I’m attentive in all the meeting. Making sure I ask questions to all my coaches and my teammates. Just get my mental reps. I’m not out there physically but I can still be there mentally. It’s important I keep asking questions and making sure I’m on top of everything.”

Even for young players the learning curve of an NFL playbook takes it toll, but when asked if the injury so early on in his career would affect his play, Pryor pointedly responded “No, not at all.”

The first depth chart of the summer was announced today, no surprise as Geno Smith was named the starting quarterback for Gang Green. According to nyjets.com there is a ‘three-headed monster’ at running back, as Bilal Powell,  Chris Johnson and Ivory are all listed under the first team.

Opposing defenses will see a lot of the trio this season, mostly Ivory on goal line and short yardage situations, Johnson on receiving and 1st down routes and Powell as the change of pace back to wear defenders down.

As of course with first releases of depth charts, things are still very preliminary as the best tight end on the roster performance wise, Zach Sudfield – who’s been the best tight end on the roster for the Jets’ in camp, remains listed as a third-stringer.

What’s happening after a week of Jets’ camp

Friday, August 1st, 2014

CORTLAND, NY — A week into the Jets’ holding training camp at SUNY Cortland, second-round pick, rookie tight end Jace Amaro continues to battle injury, the playbook and his own hands at times thus far in camp.

The saving grace of these developments have been the one pleasant surprise at camp that Jets fans have clamored for in the emergence of ‘Baby Gronk’.

Zach Sudfeld coming into camp presumably slotted in as the third-string tight end behind incumbent Jeff Cumberland (26 catches and 4 touchdowns) and Amaro. But after catching another long touchdown pass in camp, he continues to turn heads in Cortland and is building momentum toward possibly claiming the starting tight end spot down the road.

Is Zach Sudfeld finally living up to the 'Baby Gronk' hype? (Jetsinsider.com photo)

Although newly acquired veteran pass-rusher Jason Babin has not missed a practice since joining Gang Green on July 25. According to espnnewyork.com’s Rich Cimini, Babin at some point hopes the Jets are able to accommodate him by setting up a similar schedule with the team as he had with the Jaguars.

With Jacksonville Babin was given an off day every three days in training camp as well as every Wednesday off during the regular season in order to preserve the wear and tear on his body.

After practice Babin elaborated on why this would make him a more valuable asset to the team this year.

“I felt great when the season ended because they gave me ample time to recover,” Babin said of the Jaguars, who cut him in June. “When you get old in your career, the recovery time is always an issue. It’s not something I’ve brought up with Rex [Ryan] yet, but he knows. He obviously takes care of older guys. He’s a player’s coach. I’m not concerned. I know he’ll take care of me.”

Jets nation can breather a sigh of relief, temporarily at least as first-round pick, rookie Safety Calvin Pryor, was back out on the field. Pryor wore a red non-contact jersey, but seeing him back out working with his teammates participating in drills is encouraging that signs of a near concussion scare are over.

Utah’s Trevor Reilly, the team’s seventh-round pick is breaking through as another potential unsung hero this year. Reilly’s been all over the field, having flashes of playmaking ability and is making a good case for himself to make the 53-man roster as a special teams enforcer or as a backup linebacker. Not a bad deal for the Jets considering where he was taken in April.

Michael Vick also did not receive any reps with the first-team offense for the first time in camp which furthers drives home the reality of the starting quarterback job to be Geno Smith’s to lose.

Vick has stated on numerous occasions during camp that he would not get in the way of Geno’s starting role, but he had a humorous response to being asked after practice about whether the quarterback battle was already decided.

As for Geno, full reps are giving him ample opportunity to make advances as a signal caller in his second year.

“As many reps as you can get will help you out, and I’m a living testament to that,” he said. “I can just see the growth in myself and in the guys around me due to that.”

At some point in training-camp, fans, players and coaches tune in more intently when the team works on goal-line drills. The winner of the drill on day seven was the defense, as out of ten snaps, the defense stopped the offense short of the end zone on eight of the attempts. These are good signs for the defense which has it fair share of dominant moments in Cortland thus far.