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Special Work
By John Melillo
Jets Insider.com Staff Writer
August 1st, 2004

Special teams coach Mike Westhoff’s stern voice echoed across the practice field Wednesday morning, as he prepared his unit for the preseason opener against the New Orleans Saints this Friday.

Special teams coach Mike Westhoff’s stern voice echoed across the practice field Wednesday morning, as he prepared his unit for the preseason opener against the New Orleans Saints this Friday. The team conducted a brief, efficient special teams practice under dark, cloudy skies.

The morning session began with kickoff drills, as PK Doug Brien, P Toby Gowin and P Brian Simnjanovski alternated kicks. All showed sufficient leg strength to reach inside the 5-yard line, where WR Ken-Yon Rambo, RB Ian Smart, WR Jonathan Carter, RB Josh Davis and RB Johnathan Reese each took return reps. Of the group, Rambo displayed great change-of-direction ability and natural hands. He impressed with a diving catch on a short kickoff by Gowin.

Following the kickoff drill, the team practiced punt protection and punt returns. Gowin exhibited solid hang time on punts, allowing coverage to get downfield. The gunners or outside coverage men were WR Derek Lee, WR Terrence Stubbs, WR Matt Dominguez and rookie WR Jerricho Cotchery. On one kick, Gowin launched a ball into the fan bleachers after a 45-yard boot. The punt returners included Rambo, Davis, WR Justin McCareins, RB Lamont Jordan and rookie CB Roderick Bryant of Idaho. To the fans’ displeasure, Jordan muffed a punt on his first attempt, but was successful on his next try.

Players who shined on the punt block team were LB Quincy Stewart and S Derek Pagel, both showing good up field pressure on the team’s punters. The team has experimented with their placement of rookie LB Jonathan Vilma, as he lined up over center on the punt block unit, after previously working on the edge.

INJURY REPORT

LB Jason Glenn, who sat out the morning practice, worked on his reaction skills along the sidelines. Glenn was training on a small blocking sled with a device in the center that flashed which blocking dummy to hit. CB Ray Mickens had his right knee taped during practice, but he did not appear hampered by it.

Here is the current status on all injured Jets players and their projected status for Friday’s preseason game against the Saints.

-S Reggie Tongue (calf) Day to day. Out for Friday
-WR Santana Moss (hamstring) Day to day. Out for Friday
-LB Eric Barton (hamstring) Day to day. Out for Friday
-WR Lawrence Hamilton (hamstring) Day to day. Questionable for Friday
-RB Derrick Ward (high ankle sprain) 1 week or more. Out for Friday
-DE Kevin Fales (knee) 1 week or more. Out for Friday
-S Jarrell Weaver (groin) Day to day. Questionable for Friday
-S Jon McGraw (calf) Day to day. Questionable for Friday
-LB Jason Glenn (undisclosed) Day to day. Questionable for Friday

The team takes the field today at 3:30 PM for a full practice. As always, Jets Insider.com will be there so check back often for all of the latest training camp news and reports.