[quote]CORTLAND, N.Y. -- He seems to wear a perpetual game face that gives off an air of aloofness. But Sunday, Jets inside linebacker David Harris displayed a part of him he rarely shows in public.
As he trudged off the field following a rain-soaked morning practice, the 6-foot-2, 245-pound tackling machine revealed his soft side. He exploded into a mega-watt smile when the subject turned to June 19 when he married his college sweetheart, Jiali Wu, on the Caribbean island of St. Lucia.
The couple dated for five years before finally tying the knot in a small ceremony in front of family and two best men, boyhood friends from his native Grand Rapids, Mich.
''We had our honeymoon down there, too,'' said a beaming Harris. ''That's paradise already. You don't need to go anywhere else. We had a good time.
''Jiali (pronounced Jolly) brings me a lot of joy and happiness in my life. I'm glad I did it. I'm so happy.''
If Harris is happy, the Jets are elated. After an injury-filled 2008 season, Harris is back and ready to team with ex-Ravens linebacker Bart Scott in the middle of what promises to be an intimidating, blitz-happy defense that coach Rex Ryan is ready to risk his reputation on.
''That's pretty good,'' said Ryan of the pair. ''I think every team in the league wishes they had a combo of those two guys.''
The hope is that Scott and Harris can wreak the same type of mayhem that Scott and his all-universe former teammate, Ray Lewis, did for the past four seasons in Baltimore. Anchored by the pair, the Ravens never finished lower than sixth in the NFL in total defense during that stretch.
This season, Harris will be given more freedom. In the 3-4 scheme, he was solely a run stuffer. Now, he'll be able to blitz, drop back into pass cover and play the run. Ryan calls him a ''complete'' middle linebacker.
''All the linebackers are excited,'' said Harris. ''Opposing offenses will never know what's going to come. We're going to be flying around. We think it's going to be a special year.''
In Baltimore, Scott was the set-up man for Lewis, doing all the dirty work while Lewis got all the glory, and the tackles. This season, Scott will again play the role of the facilitator, crashing into lead blockers so Harris can make the tackle. But there will be a new twist.
Whereas Scott and Lewis weren't interchangeable, Scott and Harris are. Thus, Harris will sometimes run interference for Scott and the pair will share the accolades.
''I'm hoping we can complement each other and be a dynamic duo in the middle,'' said Scott, who has notched four consecutive 100-plus-tackle seasons. ''We want people to know it's going to be tough sledding when they deal with either one of us.''
Asked if the tandem might remind people of he and Lewis, Scott said, ''We're far away from that. We just have to continue to work. That's putting a Hall-of-Famer in the scenario.''
Harris, 25, says he's looking forward to pairing with the trash-talking Scott.
''It's going to be fun because Bart is an energetic guy,'' said Harris. ''He plays with a lot of passion and he knows the defense. He's like a coach on the field.''
Harris, who led the Jets in tackles with 117 as a rookie -- the first rookie since 1979 to do so, suffered through an injury-riddled sophomore slump last season. He missed most of training camp with a foot injury, suffered a groin injury against the Chiefs in Week 7 that required surgery (he missed five games) and sustained a broken fibula in the season finale against the Dolphins.
''Last season was a down year for me,'' said Harris, who finished with 87 tackles in 11 games. ''Hopefully, it was just one of those years and I got all of the injuries out of the way and I can keep getting better.''[/quote]
Harris will bounce back to his rookie form and show us all the LB we saw that year when he was all over the place and every hit seemed to be a solid "wow who was that." Scott will truly do more in terms of letting people know were they gotta be and what to expect from the defense in training camp, but come gamedays he will be even that much more valuable in terms of knowing were and when he can bend his responsibilities in terms of the overall defense.
Harris will benefit with the addition of Scott the way D'Brick has benefitted with the addition of Faneca.
Mangini and Sutton may have been lousy playcallers but the two-gap 3-4 isn't somehow a broken scheme or system. Bellichick's teams are consistent contenders and that's the defense they have used since he took over as HC. The difference is, Bellichick, in his SB years, called for constant shifts and movement by his linebackers to confuse offenses, and even without star pass rushers his defenses never rank in the bottom ten in any major category. Mangini lost sight of that and continued to call cover defenses whether we were ahead or behind in points.
Rex's attack defense, imo, suits the personnel here much better than the two-gap though. Flexibility and aggression are what we lacked last year on defense with Jenkins playing injured because of our piss poor DL depth, a 34 year old Ty Law suiting up as our starter for the last six games, and Rhodes being played back constantly to help out guys like Lowery, Poteat, Law, and Elam. Now we have a true cover SS, a dominant ILB with an attitude to match, and a former Pro-Bowl corner in Lito playing opposite Revis. The defense as a unit appears to be cohesive ("gelled") from everything we're hearing and only has really a couple of weak links (Douglas, Gholston) who may wind up performing well anyway.
Last edited by XingDaorong; 08-03-2009 at 09:21 PM.
[QUOTE=TokyoJetsFan;3197240]Chica me Tipo
is wishing JI was his friend.
Hall Of Fame
[SIZE="4"][B]Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 4,435 [/B][/SIZE]
4,435 posts/216 days= 20 posts per day
....maybe you should try the quality over quantity approach[/QUOTE]
Maybe you can suck a bag of d's.
Thanks for the relevant post.
Alright, I'll pretend Harris' role last year wasn't diminished, but was always that way. It had nothing to do with him being injured and missing 7 games. He was perfectly healthy but he was just held down by the man...as was the whole team.