Jets WR Laveranues Coles has been avoiding the media since Chad Pennington was released. (Jets Insider.com Photo)
As things are slowly getting back to normal in Jetland, practice today was met with thunderous roars from Mother Nature and lightning strikes across the sky. But then the sun pierced through the clouds to keep practice open to Jets faithful.
POV (Point of View) of Favre: Defensive backs.
The addition of Brett Favre to Gang Green has put the defensive back unit to the test. If there’s anything that could test the mettle of a unit that finished ninth in passing defense last season, it’s Favre.
“I just go out there and try to do the best I can,” DB Darrelle Revis said. “He (Favre) slings the ball in there and gets them in tight holes. It’s good to practice against a quarterback like that because it makes us as a unit better.”
Safety Kerry Rhodes: “He’s one of the best at the hard count. He keeps the d-backs honest. You can’t go off trying to make other plays. You have to be in your spot and try to get a jump from there.”
Punt return drills started off the Saturday one-a-day on the east field, with RB Leon Washington, WR Chansi Stuckey, and Revis returning punts. Revis showed the most burst of the three.
“Those two (Washington, Miller) are tremendous athletes,” Revis said. “Miller’s a former pro bowler. I’m just trying to fit in where I can get in. Right now, I’m just doing what the coaches ask me to do. It’s a competition though. Even the rookie Dwight Lowery made a great play a couple practices ago.”
On the west field, the quarterbacks did dropback drills with WR Laveranues Coles as the lone wideout. QB Brett Favre took most of the reps.
QB’s Kellen Clemens and Brett Ratliff did red zone drills with receivers in coverage on the east field. Clemens was picked off by DB Hank Poteat in the endzone on a fade route intended for Stuckey. Ratliff connected with WR David Clowney on a crossing pattern and Brad Smith and David Ball on stop routes. Favre joined in and hit WR Paul Raymond and Wallace Wright on stop routes. Clemens finished the drill 1-for-3, INT, Ratliff was 3-for-3.
“Brett (Ratliff) throws a good ball,” David Clowney said. “Both my TD passes last week were in stride. A receiver always likes the ball in stride because they’re more reactive in stride and can make more people miss.”
Favre, showcasing that patented “zip” on his throw, hit Stuckey on a seam route up the middle for nine yards during 7 on 7 drills. Ratliff connected with TE Dustin Keller on an out route for 18 yards. Keller had to use his entire 6’2” frame to snag it.
“I overran it a bit and had to adjust myself in the air for that pass,” Keller said. “If I had dropped it, it would’ve been on me.”
Favre’s first deep pass of the afternoon saw Brad Smith battling with Darrelle Revis on a post pattern. The ball fell incomplete. However if it were a game, a flag would’ve been thrown for pass interference.
“I didn’t mean to knock him,” Revis said. “I went after the ball and knocked him over as well. In a game, hopefully the referee makes the judgment call because it wasn’t intentional.”
Favre was 2-for-5 during 7 on 7, his best throw coming on a 2nd and 6 seam route to Chansi Stuckey for 13 yards. Stuckey was everywhere during 7 on 7, catching passes for 10 yards or more from Clemens, Ratliff and Favre.
“He’s some ball player,” Clowney said. “He never seems to make a mistake. I don’t think he’s run a lap yet.”
The first session of 11 on 11 commenced after 7 on 7. Favre started off the installation completing passes to FB Tony Richardson out of the flat and TE Dustin Keller on a crossing pattern. RB Leon Washington fumbled a handoff, prompting a lap run.
“That was all on me,” Washington said. “I jumped the gun a bit.”
Clemens succeeded Favre at the helm, hitting RB Musa Smith on a crossing pattern and TE Bubba Franks on a go route down the left sideline for 18 yards.
The next play saw Keller grab an out route from Ratliff. Recently signed Blair Phillips and Keller were in a tugging match with the ball, which ultimately led to Keller throwing the ball into Phillips’ gut. DT Thomas Johnson played peacemaker.
“That was nothing,” Keller said.
Three plays later, Favre geared up for a go route down the middle of the field to David Clowney, but S Kerry Rhodes rotated over and snatched the ball with one hand right in front of the former Hokie wide receiver.
“We can’t be out of position against him (Favre),” Rhodes said. “He can be looking one way and come back the other way and still fit the ball in the hole. I went to the middle and I showed him that I was post safety. But I was able to get a jump on it.”
Clemens relieved Favre once again, hitting WR Brad Smith on post route for 20 yards.
Kick return drills followed, with DB Ahmad Carroll showcasing a nice burst through the hole.
Red zone drills saw Brett Favre exhibit his more accurate throws of the day. On the ten-yard-line, Favre avoided a would-be sack to hit Brad Smith in mid-air for touchdown. He followed with a screen pass to Washington for a TD score. Favre almost threw his second interception of the day, when a pass was tipped at the line and through the hands of Rhodes. Kellen Clemens also hit Keller on a dump pass for a score.
11 on 11 started again, with Favre hitting Washington on a dump pass which ended on 19 yard run.
His final throw during the session was productive, but not pretty. Throwing off his back foot, Favre hit WR Laveranues Coles on a go route down the left sideline for a 31-yard touchdown. Hank Poteat was in coverage but poorly played the stop-and-go route. Had Poteat been watching the ball, it would’ve been a clean pick.
Favre finished the day 12-for-17, 3 TD's in 11 on 11 drills and red zone drills combined.
Lap runners of the Day: OT Damien Woody, DT Thomas Johnson, QB Kellen Clemens, OL Will Montgomery, RB Leon Washington, LB Vernon Gholston and DB Rudy Burgess.
Nothing for Ainge today
QB Erik Ainge did not get one snap during 7 on 7 or 11 on 11 today. He didn’t even participate in passing drills.
No Access to Coles again
WR Laveranues Coles was not available to the media today, making it the third straight day that he has not spoken publicly, most notably about the release of buddy Chad Pennington. It’s been said that he is upset with the departure of his former quarterback. “I’ve spoken to Laveranues recently,” coach Mangini said. “I spoke to him right after the decision that we made and he and I have good, honest conversations.”
More Helmet Envy?
Much like Brett Favre on his first day, Laveranues Coles was the only player on the field that kept his helmet on during warmup stretches.
Head Coach Eric Mangini said at the pre-practice presser that the rookies did some role playing during meetings last night, where they impersonated members of the team; including coach Mangini and Brett Favre. “The rookies did a skit last night where they took a couple shots at Brett,” he said. OL Kyle DeVan was in charge with mimicking Mangini. “I didn’t get the whole joke,” he said. “I guess we have similar body types, but I don’t think it was that impressive an impersonation.” Most of the reference was to age in terms of jokes. The funniest guy according to Mangini: QB Erik Ainge. “With the exception of Ainge, he’s funny,” Mangini said. “Some of his throws have been funny,” he said playfully. On who was playing Favre: “Brett,” he said. “He was himself. They incorporated him into the skit for about 20 seconds, but realized he wasn’t going to be an active participant.”
WR Marcus Henry was back on the practice field today. However the appearance was short-lived. He was seen riding the exercise bike toward the end of practice. DE Shaun Ellis (hand) did not practice again today and as usual, LB Jason Trusnik is still on the PUP list. WR Jerricho Cotchery did not suit up today.
Two sessions at 8:30 and 5:30 both CLOSED to the public.
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