Florham Park, NJ – A look at what’s happening around the New York Jets:
1. Welcome to the club: Zach WilsonThe junior season wasn’t pretty. No one can handle that better than Troy Aikman, who went 0-11 with nine touchdowns and 18 interceptions after being drafted by the Dallas Cowboys for the number one spot in 1989.
“I struggled like everyone else [rookie quarterback] in the history of the game,” Ekman said this week.
Not everyone experiences the tribulations of Aikman Wilson, which the former Cowboys star admitted to by saying of Wilson, “Welcome to what has become a rarity younger than a struggling rookie quarterback.” Wilson was 3-10 early last season, and finished with nine touchdowns and 11 interceptions.
This does not mean that Aikman does not care about Wilson’s long-term prospects. Although he doesn’t usually study the quarterback until he makes it to the NFL, he did some homework on Wilson around the time of the 2021 draft and came away far from impressed.
“I love Zach Wilson a lot,” said Aikman. “From what I saw in him, I liked him a lot. I was expecting maybe not to see him struggle as much as he did last year, but I think he has a chance to be a really good player.
“We don’t give these people that much slack anymore. I don’t know that’s necessarily good or bad. I think the expectations have changed a lot because of some of the success we’ve had from some of these up-and-coming players, not just in the last few years. It’s coming back. To a man like Ben Roethlisberger and what he was capable of.”
Roethlisberger was a rookie for the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2004 and went 13-0 as a regular season starter.
Wilson’s start consisted of nine plays, two of which ended in nasty misses – an ugly interception and an ill-advised stampede that resulted in a meniscus tear and a bony contusion to his right knee. Coach Robert Saleh insisted the game did not reflect the progress the midfielder had shown on the training field.
Rest assured, Wilson’s end-of-season evaluation will be based on his game performance, not his training exploits. This is a year that proves it for Wilson, who turns out to be bad when he returns to the squad. When is that? Saleh did not rule him out from the first week, saying the return-to-play protocol structured him to play in a game after only one week of full training. It was removed 19 days after laparoscopic surgery.
Once again, Ekman can connect. The new colorist for ESPN’s Monday Night Football dealt with knee surgery during his Hall of Fame career.
“You’re able to manage it a little bit better than in other situations, but it still feels comfortable with people around your leg,” he said. “I expect he’ll get rid of that, and once he slowly regains his confidence, he’ll be fine.”
2. Less green: The main takeaway from the 53-man roster is that the Jets are a bigger team than a year ago.
The average age is 26.1, compared to 25.1 at the start of 2021. (“Funny guys” as Saleh described last year’s team.) They have nine emerging players, down from 12. They have 16 players with less than two years experience, out of 21.
Part of this can be attributed to the natural evolution in menu building. General Manager Joe Douglas described them as “a wonderful group of young and experienced people.” With a more mature team, there should be fewer twists of the unbridled contrasts, which plagued last season’s squad.
3. Survivor: The longest staying player in airplanes is the long snapper Thomas Hennessy, who arrived in 2017. He is only 28 years old. Think about that for a second.
4. No More Skittles: wide future Corey Davis He didn’t generate much publicity, but he quietly made a solid boot camp after reporting 205lbs – 10lbs less than last year and his lightest weight since his junior season with the Tennessee Titans (2017). He felt faster and didn’t miss any training, adding to his optimism of a recovery year after injury-plagued 2021.
The key to losing weight? Follow a strict diet that includes eliminating sweets. Davis had (or had) a nice spot for Skittles and fruit snacks. Many of us can relate to that.
“I lost a lot of weight, weight that obviously needed to be shed,” he said.
Davis tried playing through a heart muscle injury last season, but there was so much pain that he couldn’t lift his leg. In the end, he underwent surgery and ended up missing eight matches.
5. Adams apple (their eye): Saleh has held 27 press conferences since the start of the training camp in late July, and his name is Salama Al-Nashid Tony Adams Didn’t come until this week. Reporters did not ask about him during camp and Saleh, unwilling to inform the other teams, was not about to volunteer an opinion.
Adams, who slept among all the sleepers, made the list as an undeveloped freelancer from Illinois. Now, of course, they are flocking about it. A quick story from Saleh: During a Zoom pre-interview with the Jets, Adams was asked what he wanted out of the NFL. his response:
“I want to take someone’s job.”
6. Mismatch? One concern about the menu composition is the lack of volume in the safety / nickel – Jordan Whitehead (5 feet – 10), LaMarcus Joyner (5-8) and Michael Carter II (5-10). This is one of the reasons why Gates cut the back of the nickel Javelin Guidry (5-9). This could be a problem against teams that rely on big tight ends in a passing game. It starts in the first week with the Baltimore Ravens. We see: Mark Andrews (6 feet – 5).
7. The hard farewell: Seven of the 21 players ceded by the Jets on the day the final roster were shortlisted were scored by other teams – the league’s highest (by a lot). The Buffalo Bills finished second with four players, which shouldn’t surprise anyone because they have a playoff roster.
This shows how the bottom of the Jets roster, once a breeding ground for marginal talent players in the NFL, has improved to the point that forsaken It is collected by other teams. tight end Tryvon Wesco He was the most popular player to request exemption, with four teams submitting claims. He ended up with the Chicago Bears.
The aircraft chose the narrow end of the development Lawrence Kager, a former wide receiver, over a heavily blocked Wesco—a surprising move. Obviously, other teams were also surprised when it became available.
8. The Long Way Back: Treat Macy Picton He had knee surgery recently in Los Angeles, performed by Neil Turks, the same doctor who performed Wilson’s arthroscopy. Becton, who is doing his early rehab in Los Angeles, will eventually return to the team. Douglas said he will be out for this season, but doctors “are satisfied with his long-term ability to play football.” Becton is under contract until 2023, but this does not guarantee him a job or even a place on the list.
9. Did you know? Joe Flacco He defeated 30 of his 32 teams initially, excluding the Ravens (his first team) and the Seattle Seahawks. He’ll get a shot at crows the first week if Wilson isn’t ready. Eight quarterbacks in history have defeated 31 or more teams, only two of which are active – Tom Brady (32) and Aaron Rodgers (31).
10. Hello again: Journalists were allowed into the locker room last week for the first time since the end of the 2019 season, before the pandemic spread. It’s a new experience for younger players, who’ve gone from college locker rooms to NFL’s Zoom news conferences, but treat it like seasoned pros (based on a small sample size).
Two new locker room additions we didn’t see during the Adam Gas era: a chessboard and a cornhole set.