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California on their minds

By Justin Paley
Jets Staff Writer
September 13th, 2004
After an impressive win over the Bengals yesterday, the Jets spent no time resting on their laurels and began preparing for their Sunday matchup against the San Diego Chargers.

After an impressive win over the Bengals yesterday, the Jets spent no time resting on their laurels and began preparing for their Sunday matchup against the San Diego Chargers.

San Diego features LaDainian Tomlinson at running back, and the Jets defense will have to try to figure out a way to stop him.

Last year, the Jets run defense was 27th in the NFL but yesterday they limited Bengals RB Rudi Johnson to 70 yards on 24 carries. Jets Head Coach Herman Edwards assessed the run defense in his daily press conference.

“I thought for the most part we played pretty well against the run,” Edwards said. “We put them (Cincinnati) in some downs they didn’t want to be in. My main concern coming into the game was shutting down the running game. I think we can still do some things better.”

On the opposite end of the spectrum, the Bengals defense could not do anything to stop RB Curtis Martin, who rushed for 196 yards and a touchdown. Edwards said it was important to establish the running game early since WR’s Santana Moss and Wayne Chrebet had missed a majority of practice leading up to the game. Edwards was pleased with Martin’s performance.

“At this point, probably where he was at four weeks into regular season last year,” the HC said. “Our o-line being healthy helped us. When you can run the ball, you can do a lot on offense.”

MISCELLANEOUS TIDBITS: The Jets 219 rushing yards and Curtis Martin’s 196 yards yesterday was the highest total since 2000 when the team rushed for 211 yards total and Martin had 203 yards against the Colts. It was Martin’s third carfeer highest total behind the Colts game and in 1997 against the Jets as a member of New England. Martin also shattered the Jets opening day rushing record that was previously held by Adrian Murrell in 1997 (131 YD’s vs. seattle)....Former first round pick Bryan Thomas’ Jets career hit a new low yesterday when he was placed on the inactive list in favor of rookie DE Trevor Johnson. Thomas has been hobbled by a sore hamstring that was suffered against the Giants two weeks ago....Don’t put rookie LB Jonathan Vilma in the Jets starting lineup just yet. Veteran Sam Cowart, who is now again playing his natural position in the middle, is not going down without a fight. The former All-Pro player led the defense yesterday with 14 tackles and a force fumble.

INJURY REPORT:The Jets escaped yesterday’s game with no new injuries. Here is the current injury report for Sunday’s game at San Diego.

-DE Bryan Thomas (hamstring) Probable
-DT Josh Evans (back): Probable
-S Jon McGraw (groin): Probable

The team has tomorrow off then returns to practice Wednesday. Be sure to check back to Jets often for all the latest NY Jets news.

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