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Thread: NYT: Vilma and the O

  1. #1
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    [b]New York Times

    Vilma Is Man in Middle for Jets

    By JUDY BATTISTA[/b]


    The play came on the first day of practice for the rookie linebacker.

    Jonathan Vilma, a middle linebacker from the University of Miami and the Jets' first-round draft selection, was supposed to blitz the quarterback. The offense lined up a tight end wide, but the player who was supposed to come down to cover the tight end did not recognize the call quickly enough. Vilma saw that the tight end was uncovered, waved off a teammate and covered the tight end himself.

    "When a rookie can do that right out of the box, that's pretty impressive," Coach Herman Edwards said.

    The Jets' linebacking corps had grown old and slow last season, so much so that in Miami, Vilma realized there would probably be a job opening for him here, months before the Jets released Mo Lewis and Marvin Jones. Last week, the Jets made him the cornerstone of an infusion of youth and speed that they hope will pull the defense out of three seasons of torpor.

    The change was noticeable almost immediately when Vilma joined the Jets for his first practice Friday.

    "Vilma stood out to me a couple of times today," cornerback Ray Mickens said. "Just his speed and awareness. I saw him covering a couple of receivers in the open field that caught my eye. I haven't seen that here in a while."

    There is nothing subtle about the shift the Jets hope to make with Vilma in the middle. He will be counted on to provide the sideline-to-sideline pursuit that has long been absent, to cover running backs and tight ends and to take control of a defense that the coordinator Donnie Henderson vows will be more aggressive in getting to the quarterback. That defense will feature multiple fronts and coverages.

    For Vilma, this is familiar ground. He played on every down while at Miami. Last year, he had 127 tackles.

    "I'm just used to it now," Vilma said. "It's what I do. I'm able to cover. I'm able to run. Plug the holes, fill the gaps. I don't see why I wouldn't be an every-down linebacker."

    Vilma has been adamant since draft day that he intends to be the starter for the season opener. The veteran linebacker Sam Cowart, who has been switched to the middle after two underwhelming seasons on the weak side, said he felt out of sorts on the weak side, as if his name had been changed after 28 years.

    Still, the drafting of Vilma can be viewed as a no-confidence vote for Cowart, who barely survived a salary-cap purge and who will have to learn an entirely new defense with his job on the line. Cowart, however, has not felt slighted by Vilma's arrival.

    "I was 22 coming into the league, and the Bills had Chris Spielman," Cowart said. "You have to look ahead. I'm 29 and Vilma's a young guy. He's the future."

    The Jets raved that Vilma was the most instinctive linebacker in the draft, but at Miami those instincts were helped by two hours of film study each day, at least one hour a day on his own. Vilma did this while being named an academic all-American as a finance major.

    On Friday night, Vilma stayed up late in his hotel room, studying his new playbook. Still, when Henderson performed his usual test in a defensive meeting Friday announcing a scenario and demanding that a player spit out the appropriate call quickly Vilma stumbled, citing only part of the call. Henderson threw his arms up, signaling that the opponent would have score a touchdown if Vilma had made the same mistake in a game.

    When the season starts, there will be far greater pressure on Vilma to make the correct call. That is when he expects his studies to become more important than his instincts, but until then he will rely on the dominant part of his game.

    "I hustle best," he said.


    [b]EXTRA POINTS[/b]

    At the end of last season, Coach HERMAN EDWARDS vowed to talk to his offensive coordinator, PAUL HACKETT, about ways to shake up the offense. The Jets have had problems with clock management, and last season they struggled to score when they got inside their opponents' 20. Edwards wants to be more aggressive and less predictable. This year, the Jets will sprinkle in a no-huddle and a fast-huddle offense to change the tempo of the game. There is also a new rule: no timeouts are to be called in the first and third quarters except under extreme conditions. Last season, the Jets called five timeouts in the first and third quarters and five early in the fourth.

    The Jets will also give quarterback CHAD PENNINGTON the authority to call his own plays in the huddle on occasion and to audible at the line of scrimmage. The Jets have also streamlined communications among coaches, with Edwards and the senior offensive assistant DICK CURL managing the clock on the sideline. The Jets have rehearsed down-and-distance options so there are fewer delays in play-calling.

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    [quote][i]Originally posted by Green Jets & Ham[/i]@May 2 2004, 12:08 AM
    [b] The Jets will also give quarterback CHAD PENNINGTON the authority to call his own plays in the huddle on occasion and to audible at the line of scrimmage [/b][/quote]
    Music to my ears

    In other words, if Hackett calls for another one of his patented draw-plays on 3rd & 15, CP has the authority to toss that garbage in the dumpster :D

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    OMFG ......

    CHAD CAN CALL SOME OF HIS OWN PLAYS NOW!!!! YEEEEEESSSSSSSSSS!!!!!!

    I couldnt agree with you more, GJH, if hackett calls a dumb ass play, now Penny can audible out of it...how cool is this gonna be....sheeeeeet.

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    [quote][i]Originally posted by Green Jets & Ham[/i]@May 2 2004, 12:08 AM
    [b] The Jets have also streamlined communications among coaches, with Edwards and the senior offensive assistant DICK CURL managing the clock on the sideline. [/b][/quote]
    Dick Curl....the best name in pro sports, bar none

  5. #5
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    [quote][i]Originally posted by Green Jets & Ham[/i]@May 2 2004, 12:08 AM
    [b] "I'm just used to it now," Vilma said. "It's what I do. I'm able to cover. I'm able to run. Plug the holes, fill the gaps. I don't see why I wouldn't be an every-down linebacker."
    [/b][/quote]
    Whew! So we won't have to line him up at safety after all? :lol:

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    I'm not quite sure I'm going to be able stomach having a LB that actually doesn't make contact 10 yards downfield. :lol:

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    [quote][i]Originally posted by The Gun Of Bavaria[/i]@May 2 2004, 01:26 AM
    [b] I'm not quite sure I'm going to be able stomach having a LB that actually doesn't make contact 10 yards downfield. :lol: [/b][/quote]
    Tell me about it Guns. :)

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    [quote][i]Originally posted by Green Jets & Ham+May 2 2004, 12:17 AM--></span><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td>[b]QUOTE[/b] (Green Jets & Ham @ May 2 2004, 12:17 AM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'> <!--QuoteBegin--Green Jets & Ham[/i]@May 2 2004, 12:08 AM
    [b] The Jets will also give quarterback CHAD PENNINGTON the authority to call his own plays in the huddle on occasion and to audible at the line of scrimmage [/b][/quote]
    Music to my ears

    In other words, if Hackett calls for another one of his patented draw-plays on 3rd & 15, CP has the authority to toss that garbage in the dumpster :D [/b][/quote]
    agreed 100%

    this is the most important blurb in the whole story (if true)

    Chad is the man let him call the plays when the game is on the line. If Payton can do it, Chad can do it...they just have to keep him clean and off the ground.

    this quote made my night

    enjoyed reading about Vilma though - he&#39;s got so much potential to be a special player...

    if the above quote was the most important this was the most enjoyable

    [quote][b]"Vilma stood out to me a couple of times today," cornerback Ray Mickens said. "Just his speed and awareness. I saw him covering a couple of receivers in the open field that caught my eye. I haven&#39;t seen that here in a while."[/b][/quote]

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    bit , first you go off on a tirade claiming that vilma will be a bust because hes a 180 pound weakling with homo tendecies and now he will be a player

    hellllooooo pick a [position and stick to it :D

  10. #10
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    Chad called his own plays in college at Marshall.

    He can do what Manning does to the Colts. Coach on the field.

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    Chad was a Rhodes Scholar ... this man can probably recite the entire playbook backwards

    Agree with BIT and MGF ... If Peyton Manning {no rocket scientist} can call his own plays/audiblize, CP can do the same in his sleep

    I&#39;ve always felt CP should be given more freedom to call his own plays ... his instincts are impecable ... we would be crazy not to take advantage of his feel for the game

  12. #12
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    [quote][i]Originally posted by dickkotite[/i]@May 2 2004, 02:17 AM
    [b] hellllooooo pick a [position and stick to it :D [/b][/quote]
    dk why should i, last time i checked im not running for office :lol:

    seriously i never said he wasn&#39;t gonna be a player. Statistically 50% of all players picked in the first round are busts, so call it bustin chops... i want desperately to believe that Jon Vilma will save the JETS... my reservations aren&#39;t his head or instincts running around without pads in May... its in the real thing when the speed of everything, including the 340 pound bastards in front of him will be at a higher tempo.

    all linebackers, even the smartest have to fight through blocking in the run game... i&#39;ve seen alot of Vilma highlights and let me be perfectly clear when i say this guy did nothing but make plays, most of the time... spectacular, game changing, team firing-up plays - he&#39;s a stud...

    however would invite anyone to watch the VTech game(Nov 2, 2003), you don&#39;t see many highlights from that one... where Vilma gets 4 solo tacks and a PD but was washed with tough inside blocking alot - Virginia Tech 31, Miami 7 - v tech wins handily with 179 yards rushing and 44 passing... with half as many offensive plays as Miami.

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