Despite a 4.3 yard per carry average by rookie Leon Washington, the Jets will continue spreading out the carries to both Washington and Kevan Barlow (above). (Jets Insider.com Photo)
The New York Jets begin preparation for the Detroit Lions today after barely holding off the Miami Dolphins last week at the Meadowlands. The Lions come into town on a sour note after winning their first game of the season last week against the Buffalo Bills; DT Shaun Rogers was suspended today for four games for violating the league’s substance abuse policy. According to Lions head coach Rod Marinelli, Rogers is out for Sunday’s game and will not appeal to try to play against the Jets.
Jets head coach Eric Mangini said that the Lions have “flexibility there to move guys around,” so the Jets will “plan accordingly” to adjust for the changes in the Lions defense. Mangini said that, “defensively, they are fast; they are aggressive” and he thinks, “it’s an opportunistic defense that’s getting more and more opportunistic each week.”
Also, the Jets will be seeing an old friend this weekend in former defensive coordinator Donnie Henderson. Henderson served time with the Jets for two seasons, from 2004-2005. Over that period of time the Jets defense improved greatly in all areas, jumping his first season from 21st to seventh in total defense. For Mangini there is no real advantage in the players knowing about Henderson’s style because, “it’s a system that incorporates elements of both things that Donnie liked to do and some elements of different systems. When there is a fusion of systems it’s not always as clean cut as if the one system had just moved to a new place.”
Offensively, the Jets have to worry about the offensive genius of coordinator Mike Martz. Martz impresses Mangini every week and “he’s always done a good job and it’s always challenging whenever you face one of his offensive groups.” WR Roy Williams will be a big obstacle for the Jets secondary. It will be a “problem,” but the Jets seem eager and ready for him.
For the Jets, WR Laveranues Coles has been exceptional at his job. Each week he appears on the injury list with something new that’s wrong on his body, yet he still performs at a high performance week in and week out. Coles was a huge reason why the Jets won last week scoring two touchdowns and having another 100-yard day. To Mangini, Coles is the “shining star” in terms of how he handles his injuries and has continued to perform at a high level.
The running back situation is also a hot topic for the Jets now knowing that RB Curtis Martin won’t return any time soon. Mangini is happy with his “package-based” running back situation. The quartet of Kevan Barlow, Leon Washington, Cedric Houston, and Derrick Blaylock is still something Mangini likes to use. He believes that all have something to bring to the table, and he likes the option of being able to use different backs at different points in a game.
QB Chad Pennington is happy because he didn’t have to waste time getting over a lost this week. Instead, he was able to have fun with his kids and begin preparing for the Lions defense. The no-huddle offense has been a great new asset to the Jets and Pennington enjoys working on it to make it better and more successful. “There’s a communication key to the no-huddle and we work on efficiency with it every week.” With Pennington taking on his former defensive coordinator this week, Pennington stressed, “ball security is key and not getting sacked.”
The Jets need to win this game to make a name for themselves in the AFC. First, this would be the first two game win streak for the Jets this season and it would put them over the .500 mark for the second time this season. Also, it would be a great motivator for the team before going to Cleveland to take on another friend of Mangini’s, Browns head coach Romeo Crennel.
- Mangini during his press conference admitted that CB David Barrett was not ready to play and that his situation “has been more medical than anything else. He is happy though with the way Barrett has treated himself “medically in terms of his rehab.”
- SS Erik Coleman and CB Drew Coleman have impressed Mangini recently. Mangini said that their opportunities to play will “continue as long as they continue to make progress and continue to take advantage of the opportunities that they do get.”
- K Mike Nugent said he was relaxed and ready on Sunday when he was called in to kick two field goals, the first field goal attempts he has had in weeks. Nugent said his mindset doesn’t change from week to week and he takes the “same approach as if he’s kicking a field goal or a point after.”
- The Jets are not taking these three games against arguably weaker opponents lightly. CB Andre Dyson said that, “we worry about it game by game and that every game in the NFL is tough.”
- Marinelli pointed out that Mangini is “very creative” and he “respects what he has being doing with his team.”
-FB BJ Askew-(Foot)-Questionable
-CB David Barrett-(Hip)-Questionable
-WR Laveranues Coles-(Calf)-Questionable
-WR Tim Dwight-(Thigh)-Questionable
-RB Cedric Houston-(Knee)-Questionable
-OL Trey Teague-(Ankle)-Questionable
-DL Dave Ball-(Hand)-Probable
-RB Kevan Barlow-(Calf)-Probable
-LB Matt Chatham-(Foot)-Probable
-OL Anthony Clement-(Shin)-Probable
-OL Pete Kendall-(Thigh)-Probable
-QB Chad Pennington-(Calf)-Probable
-S Kerry Rhodes-(Thigh)-Probable
-WR Brad Smith-(Thigh)-Probable
-DL Kimo von Oelhoffen-(Knee)-Probable
The Jets return to practice tomorrow in preparation for Sunday’s home game against the Lions and as always JetsInsider.com will be there with all the late breaking developments.