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Thread: Mehta: Bilal Powell picks up blocking techniques, earns NY Jets' third-down rb

  1. #1

    Mehta: Bilal Powell picks up blocking techniques, earns NY Jets' third-down rb

    Bilal Powell couldn’t block.

    The running back had averaged 6.1 yards per carry and rushed for 11 TDs in his senior season at Louisville — gaudy stats that would attract the eye of NFL teams. But when it came to stopping pass rushers, he was inept.

    “I always used to tell Bilal, ‘You won’t hit the water if you fell out of a boat in college.’ . . . He was that bad,” said Jets running back coach Anthony Lynn.

    Powell’s inability to block coupled with a lack of consistency his senior season gave other teams reason for pause. When the Jets saw Powell sitting there in the fourth round of the 2011 draft, they figured they had to take a chance. Because of Powell’s physical running style, Lynn thought he could turn him into a decent blocker if the back put in the effort.

    “I think we all liked him,” Lynn said. “(GM) Mike Tannenbaum, the scouts, they liked him. I liked him. We were just tickled to death that he was still there when we picked.”

    Powell had only 13 carries in 2011 — that tends to happen playing behind future Hall of Famer LaDainian Tomlinson, the Jets’ former third-down back. Fast forward to today and Powell is in a different place. The Daily News recently reported that Powell won the Jets’ third-down job, beating out Joe McKnight after an impressive training camp. And the blocking?

    That’s an entirely new story. “He looks slimmer to me, and man, I love the way he protects,” Rex Ryan said. “He’s a very aggressive blocker, and that’s what you have to be to pick up these linebackers blitzing.”

    “Some days he struggled last year,” fullback John Connor said. “He’s become a good third-down back, a real physical guy picking up blitzes.”

    Powell’s greatest weakness has become one of his biggest strengths.

    “I just want to take care of my quarterback,” Powell said. “I know if you don’t protect the quarterback you’re not going to be in the game. So, I try and take pride in doing that.”

    With the ground-and-pound running game primed to take shape starting Sunday, Shonn Greene said he expects the running-heavy offense to be unleashed right from the start. Powell will surely get some touches.

    http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/fo...icle-1.1155187

  2. #2
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    Happy for Bilal, but what does this say about Joe McKnight? I mean, seriously...

    That said, I really hope Powell comes up big. I think 3rd down back (in terms of both blocking and receiving out of the backfield) is one of our biggest question marks. I don't think we miss Plax at all, but I'm worried we might miss LaDanian.

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    How much has this team missed Richie Anderson since he retired...

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by nycdan View Post
    How much has this team missed Richie Anderson since he retired...
    NO NEGATIVE THOUGHTS TODAY !!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Austin View Post
    Happy for Bilal, but what does this say about Joe McKnight? I mean, seriously...

    That said, I really hope Powell comes up big. I think 3rd down back (in terms of both blocking and receiving out of the backfield) is one of our biggest question marks. I don't think we miss Plax at all, but I'm worried we might miss LaDanian.
    What it says about McKnight is that he is considered one of the premier kick returners in the NFL and they want to keep him returning kicks. Really pretty easy to figure out!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kentucky Jet View Post
    What it says about McKnight is that he is considered one of the premier kick returners in the NFL and they want to keep him returning kicks. Really pretty easy to figure out!
    No it says he can't block. Worse than that is that he can't process the information and decide who he needs to block quick enough. I've said it from the beginning. Whoever can pick up the blitz is going to move up the charts. It doesn't matter how well you can run or catch if you can't block you're staying on the bench. That was the reason LT was still out there last year when it was clear he had nothing left.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NY's stepchild View Post
    No it says he can't block. Worse than that is that he can't process the information and decide who he needs to block quick enough. I've said it from the beginning. Whoever can pick up the blitz is going to move up the charts. It doesn't matter how well you can run or catch if you can't block you're staying on the bench. That was the reason LT was still out there last year when it was clear he had nothing left.
    Lets see where they both wind up at the end of the season! McKnight can block but is not as effectively as Bilal. Both are Jets and I want BOTH to do great! However Joe can do other things out of the backfield including bringing speed and catching ability. But he is a very good KR and that is his currrent value to the team. Plus he is still recovering from shin splints. Do you deny that? Too many here are so quick to write the guy off! Its been that way since he was drafted and then threw up. Oh well, just saying.....
    Last edited by Kentucky Jet; 09-09-2012 at 11:03 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kentucky Jet View Post
    Lets see where they both wind up at the end of the season! McKnight can block but is not as effectively as Bilal. Both are Jets and I want BOTH to do great! However Joe can do other things out of the backfield including bringing speed and catching ability. But he is a very good KR and that is his currrent value to the team. Plus he is still recovering from shin splints. Do you deny that? Too many here are so quick to write the guy off! Its been that way since he was drafted and then threw up. Oh well, just saying.....
    I never wrote him off. I said at the beginning of preseason that if I was his agent I'd have him training for blitz pickup all off season. In fact anyone that could pass protect was going to get the job even if it was a UFA. I wish/hope McKnight can do it because he has much greater upside. I don't think Tony is going to tip off the defense this year the way Shotty did so he's not going to bring one guy in to block, and one to run a route so you're going to have to be versatile this year. I can see a 3rd down package with both of them out there since Terminator can't run, pass block, or catch. I really wish he wasn't taking a roster spot. I'm hoping Reuland can fill that spot. Wishful think I know, but he would be perfect in the versatile department.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Austin View Post
    Happy for Bilal, but what does this say about Joe McKnight? I mean, seriously...

    That said, I really hope Powell comes up big. I think 3rd down back (in terms of both blocking and receiving out of the backfield) is one of our biggest question marks. I don't think we miss Plax at all, but I'm worried we might miss LaDanian.
    It says, the ONLY thing keeping McKnight on this team is his kick returning abilities. That's it.

    And to recap, when we drafted Justin Miller back in 2005, we quickly found out that the guy sucked as a CB. The ONLY reason he stuck was because he did a great returning kicks. Soon enough, the Jets got sick and tired of his act and dropped him in favor of Leon Washington and the Jets ST's never even hesitated. Then? Miller got released and is anyone even aware of him still being in the league??

    I see Joe McKnight as being no different. A major disappointment as a RB who is barely clinging on to a roster spot based on very good kick returning abilities.

    So what is the common link here? It's Mike Westhoff. One of the very best ST's coaches ever that should have gotten a Head Coaching job. I really thought he should have been hired as HC after Herm was fired.

    The guy can take just about any JAG and make them into a major asset.

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