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Thread: NY Times Piece on HOBSON

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    Rookie Offers Jets' Defense a Big Boost
    By JUDY BATTISTA

    http://www.nytimes.com/2003/08/07/sports/f...all/07Jets.html

    HEMPSTEAD, N.Y., Aug. 6 - In the minutes before the Jets opened the preseason last Saturday in Tokyo, the team was not even sure Victor Hobson could play. Hobson, a rookie linebacker, had hurt his back in warm-ups, and the Jets waited to see if his back, perhaps still tight from the long flight, would loosen up.

    It did, and Hobson unleashed the best statistical performance of the game. On an otherwise shaky defense, Hobson had 10 tackles, including a sack, and displayed a physical tackling style that delighted the coaches.

    Hobson also committed some rookie mistakes, but for a player who has already been tabbed as Mo Lewis's heir apparent at strongside linebacker, Hobson's debut was impressive.

    "He's very strong, with strong hands, and can play on the tight end," said Bob Sutton, the linebackers coach. "He's been a pleasant surprise in his coverage ability, both in zone and even man to man. For the first game, he did a good job. He's going to be a good player."

    Hobson's learning curve has been reduced because his college team, Michigan, plays a style of defense similar to the Jets'. The basic concepts are the same, and so is the off-the-field preparation. Nothing about training camp has surprised Hobson: not the morning-until-night meetings, not the grinding practices. The soft-spoken Hobson said he had not been overwhelmed or nervous about his first professional game.

    Hobson slipped into the defense without a difficult adjustment period. Although he is not fast, he is physically ideal for his position. At 6 feet and 252 pounds, Hobson has a thick, blocky upper body that he uses to ward off tight ends. And he is being tutored by Lewis, who can not only teach him the defense, but can also tell him how to recognize the nuances of opposing offenses to improve his anticipation.

    "Playing over the tight end, you have to be strong at the point of attack or people will notice you're getting pushed all over the field," Hobson said. "The pass coverage was something I thought was a weakness when I got drafted, but it's something I have been working on for a while. That's something I feel more and more comfortable with every day. I wouldn't say it comes easy, because nothing comes easy as far as playing football. I was in a fortunate position at those times and my attitude is to try to make every play. Luckily, I was in on a few of them."

    When Hobson was drafted in the second round of the draft in April, the Jets' defensive coordinator, Ted Cottrell, said they thought he was the best strongside linebacker in the draft. Hobson will provide depth at a position where the Jets were thin last season. In the two seasons that Herman Edwards has been the Jets' head coach, no starting linebacker has missed a start, a remarkably injury-free run for that position.

    Last season, James Darling was the backup at all linebacker positions, and he played extensively in the nickel and dime defenses. Darling had 11 tackles that prevented a first-down conversion on either third or fourth down. But Darling signed with the Arizona Cardinals as a free agent, leaving the Jets with a hole to fill.

    Sutton said he believed that three players would serve as backups: Hobson, Jason Glenn and Khary Campbell. He said Hobson might eventually take on some of the role that Lewis now plays in the nickel defenses, rushing the quarterback, a role Hobson played at Michigan, too.

    "When he hits you," Sutton said, "he can stop you."

    EXTRA POINTS

    Defensive tackle CHESTER McGLOCKTON, in just his second day of practice, had a sack in the morning session. The rookie linebacker MARK BROWN was having a good camp until he injured his hamstring during the Jets' scrimmage before they left for Japan. Coach HERMAN EDWARDS spoke to Brown on Tuesday about his future. "I told him, 'What you need to do is keep your head in the books,' " Edwards said. " 'Don't cut yourself.' " {hellip} Cincinnati Bengals Coach MARVIN LEWIS will make his head coaching debut in Sunday's preseason game against the Jets, which will match two of the N.F.L.'s three African-American coaches against each other. "I'm glad he's playing against us," Edwards said. "You remember that. For Marvin, it's a long time coming.''

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    REALLY WOW B)

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    Thanks, Herm...goes to show you scouting NEVER will be an exact science.....there are too many intangibles involved in a players make-up besides 40 time and bench press that ultimately determine what type of player he is.....things like instinct, heart, explosion into tackles, and leadership are hard to see on paper...I'll bet some of the coaches here at JIer will certaintly attest to that.....Hobson looks to be that type of player.
    Who were those small, stocky LB's that wrecked havos for New Orleans in the 80's?? He reminds me of those guys....might not be fast, but he gets to the ballcarrier faster than anybody else.

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    These were Ted's comments in last Tuesday's "Tues. with Teddy" over at nyj.com. (it's kinda funny - everyone "did good" in Tokyo. Not one of Teddy's more substantive interviews)

    Tackling Machine: Linebacker Victor Hobson, our second round pick from Michigan, played well. He made a couple of mistakes, which is understandable. His effort was good. I like the way Victor tackles. When he hits those guys, they go down. He is a good wrap-up tackler. And he got a sack. He has to work on his conditioning. Victor is on all those specialty teams. He had to run down to cover a punt, and then jump right into the defensive huddle. His oxygen supply was maybe diminishing a little bit.

    Ted had also mentioned in rookie camp in May Vic had hit the rookie wall in a practice rather soon. That makes two "conditioning" statements now. But with a guy like Hobson, you have to suspect he'll do what it takes to play all out for as many minutes as he's on the field.

    I'm so psyched about this player!

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    In the long run, hobson might be the best pick of the draft. what a game he had! when they picked him i was like, "who?" but we needed a LB so i had to trust the pick.
    also, the glock, why do i have a feeling that somewhere down the line the glock is going to take fergies position and dominate? why? are my green goggles on?

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    Originally posted by Shadetree@Aug 7 2003, 09:40 AM
    Thanks, Herm...goes to show you scouting NEVER will be an exact science.....there are too many intangibles involved in a players make-up besides 40 time and bench press that ultimately determine what type of player he is.....things like instinct, heart, explosion into tackles, and leadership are hard to see on paper...I'll bet some of the coaches here at JIer will certaintly attest to that.....Hobson looks to be that type of player.
    Who were those small, stocky LB's that wrecked havos for New Orleans in the 80's?? He reminds me of those guys....might not be fast, but he gets to the ballcarrier faster than anybody else.
    Shadetree, for some reason Hobson reminds me of Hardy Nickerson. Nickerson (is he STILL playing?) is a little taller, and lighter, but there is something about Victor's on field presence, stance, style, makes me think of Nickerson more than any other LB in recent memory.

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    Great article, thanks. I'm still not buying the knock on Victor as "slow." He just doesn't look slow on the field watching the Tampa game or in the Michigan games I've watched against my beloved Hawkeyes.

    I posed the question to him in the players forum, we'll see. Any opinions from those who've seen him at camp? Probably hard to tell.

    It also seems counterintuitive to me that he could be "slow," yet so "strong" in man-to-man coverage. Surely there are other abilities needed to be good in coverage, but speed must be a big one, no?

    Victor's gonna be a second round gem.... B)

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    Originally posted by HermsHerald@Aug 7 2003, 09:40 AM

    I'm so psyched about this player!
    ditto, herm.

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    Wow, I hope at the draft I was so wrong with this player!

    I was actually pissed (along with some other Jets "Green" posters) we chose this guy over other LB's available....ie Willie Cie Grant, Gerald Hayes, Sam Williams. Oh well........I'll take "HobKnocker."

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    Originally posted by FreddyG@Aug 7 2003, 09:49 AM
    It also seems counterintuitive to me that he could be "slow," yet so "strong" in man-to-man coverage. Surely there are other abilities needed to be good in coverage, but speed must be a big one, no?

    Victor's gonna be a second round gem.... B)
    Freddy, this is where, I think, Herm's statement "it helps to know what you're doing" aggregates Hobson's game. He might not be the fastest guy out there, but the split second(s) it takes to get back into the right position, or to wonder " duh so what do I do now", or to check the other backers positions and figure out the assignment from there, to re-align oneself, etc..all I know is guys like Jason Glenn with much more speed don't necessarily get to the ball or the player with it on time. Hobson will make his mistakes, but he is, by all indications, a smart player, whose so-called lack of speed will be mitigated by the fact he can think fast..

    ok enough Hobson gushing for now

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    ok enough Hobson gushing for now
    Actually, I don't think we've paid enough attention to him. He looks to be a real quality player and if he continues to perform we'll be talking about him even more.

    Nickname anyone? For that matter, I think that JetsInsiders should make it an annual tradition come up with nicknames for every player in the draft class? Maybe they'll filter into Camp - The Knish was discovered!

    Let's work on Victor Hobson....

    Stay tuned...

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    Originally posted by FreddyG@Aug 7 2003, 10:36 AM
    ok enough Hobson gushing for now
    Actually, I don't think we've paid enough attention to him. He looks to be a real quality player and if he continues to perform we'll be talking about him even more.

    Nickname anyone? For that matter, I think that JetsInsiders should make it an annual tradition come up with nicknames for every player in the draft class? Maybe they'll filter into Camp - The Knish was discovered!

    Let's work on Victor Hobson....

    Stay tuned...
    I meant VH gushing coming from ME, because I've been doing that since draft time. hee hee

    I hope everyone else continues gushing. I want to sit back, read. and ENJOY!

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    Originally posted by FreddyG@Aug 7 2003, 10:36 AM
    ok enough Hobson gushing for now
    Actually, I don't think we've paid enough attention to him. He looks to be a real quality player and if he continues to perform we'll be talking about him even more.

    Nickname anyone? For that matter, I think that JetsInsiders should make it an annual tradition come up with nicknames for every player in the draft class? Maybe they'll filter into Camp - The Knish was discovered!

    Let's work on Victor Hobson....

    Stay tuned...
    You want to talk about someone who is not being paid attention to Lets talk about Khary Campbell. I guarantee you he had as many or more tackles, and was close to a sack on 2 occasions that I counted and was in the backfield several times. That guy was all over the field. For those of you who taped the game, watch it again and keep your eye on #53. His motor never stopped running. Not taking anything away from Hobson, he will be a great player but K.C. also played a hell of a game.

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    Originally posted by FreddyG@Aug 7 2003, 10:36 AM
    ok enough Hobson gushing for now
    Actually, I don't think we've paid enough attention to him. He looks to be a real quality player and if he continues to perform we'll be talking about him even more.

    Nickname anyone? For that matter, I think that JetsInsiders should make it an annual tradition come up with nicknames for every player in the draft class? Maybe they'll filter into Camp - The Knish was discovered!

    Let's work on Victor Hobson....

    Stay tuned...
    The Terminator! Victor Hobson.

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    When The Jets draft guys, They usually look for character guys who have leadership skills.

    Both Hobson and Askew were team captains at Michigan. They were leaders on their team in college.

    From first glance, Hobson looks like a big strong guy who can hit. The guy is in great shape and it shows. He needs to be ready to step in for one of our solid vets in Cowart, Lewis and Jones, in case anything happens to one of those 3 players. Hobson's main role though is to replace James Darling on special teams.

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    A lot of us doubted Hobson just after the draft, hopefully he will make all of the experts on this board eat those words for the next 10 years.

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    I remember seeing several Michigan games the last couple of years and Hobson was very noticable in run defense. He was usually in or around the tackle being made.
    I like the quote from Bob Sutton LB coach in NY Times article-when he hits you he stops you.

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    Originally posted by ARodKeyWestJetsFan@Aug 7 2003, 10:59 AM
    The Terminator! Victor Hobson.
    I've already got my "pet" name for Hobson. Since he is rather stocky, built low to the ground, has a short neck, looks natural in green on green, and since they "claimed" he is "slow".

    THE TURTLE

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    How bout Victor "Traffic Jam" Hobson. We're in NYC...

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    Victor "the Hobgoblin" Hobson :lol:


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