After a mistaken-filled practice this morning, the New York Jets came back to the practice fields at Hofstra looking for ways to greatly improve from earlier today and prepare for Saturday’s preseason game against the Giants.
Prior to the start of evening practice, the sounds of the Dave Matthews Band echoed through the speakers which, along with the selection of classical music and the decision to wear only uppers (half-pads), indicated that it was to be a mellow beginning of the evening in front of a crowd that got slightly bigger than earlier this morning.
Exciting plays did come later in practice, however. During a passing drill pitting receivers and backs against defenders, S Erik Coleman - who took a free pass from this morning’s session - picked off a pass from QB Chad Pennington, which brought a roar from his defensive teammates. During 11-on-11 drills, CB Rayshaun Kizer had a pick of his own.
It was during those 11-on-11 drills that the majority of Monday evening's highlights occurred. Jack-of-all-trades Brad Smith was involved in a number of impressive plays during the drill, making an over-the-shoulder catch on a deep pass from QB Kellen Clemens early on and later getting a potential touchdown catch slapped out of his hands by CB Drew Coleman.
Big runs into the red zone were also plentiful as RB Alvin Banks and RB Tony Hollings rushed their offensive teams deep into opposing territory. Banks had to shake off a would-be tackler to complete his long run, showing off the physicality that has carried him deep into training camp as an undrafted rookie free agent.
The last-minute drills provided the biggest highlight of the evening. After WR Laveranues Coles caught a pass from Pennington, he made a lateral pass to RB Leon Washington, who got out of bounds to keep the possession alive.
Unfortunately for both offensive units, attempts to end the day on a high note failed yet again as their respective Hail Mary passes fell short of the end zone and were batted away by defenders.
Although the ending was a bit disappointing to the fans, the bright side of it was that the session's intensity more than made up for the rough morning Gang Green had. Coach Mangini is hoping to see many more improvements being made in the days to come before the Jets face a daunting test on Saturday against the G-Men.
-The list of the walking wounded did not change since this morning’s session. Starting-RB Thomas Jones and CB Justin Miller were doing conditioning exercises and walked around the practice fields. Jones had a brief stay on the hand bike and was on the stationary bike the remainder of the day.
-Safety Eric Smith started and ended the day on the stationary bike, but took laps around the field and did exercises as well. Rookie-WR Chansi Stuckey, who was injured during this morning’s session, spent most of his evening on the stationary bike.
-In punt-return drills, CB Darrelle Revis and Leon Washington have been splitting reps as return men.
-Trick plays were also experimented during punting drills, including a lateral from Brad Smith to P Ben Graham.
-During special teams drills, Revis bobbled the ball while catching a punt before he fell on it to prevent further damage. It was the first muffed punt by Revis since the first he saw as an official member of the Jets on Sunday.
-At first, it appeared that RB Danny Ware was going to have another rough session after dropping a short pass during a situational drill (Ware dropped numerous short passes in the morning session on Monday). However, he atoned for the mistake by quickly catching two short passes and taking them for sizable gains.
-During goal-line drills, DE Kenyon Coleman got an interception off of a batted Chad Pennington pass to the delight of his defensive teammates. Pennington later ran a keeper in for a touchdown, spiking the ball emphatically afterwards.
-Leon Washington had his speed on display to the delight of the crowd in nearly every drill Monday evening. Along with the trick play in the last-minute situation, he also turned some short catches into huge gains and ran the ball effectively.
-Wide receiver Justin McCareins was shaken up during 11-on-11 drills and retreated to the sidelines. To the relief of all in attendence (especially after Stuckey's injury earlier in the day), he returned to the field for the last-minute drills and appeared to be fine.
-After practice, the Jets front office announced the waiving of rookie-DB James Ihedigbo. Ihedigbo, a product of the University of Massachusetts, initially signed with the Jets as an undrafted rookie free agent on May 15.