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Everything posted by KRL

  1. https://www.si.com/nfl/2022/05/23/robert-saleh-jets-optimistic-bills-community-mmqb There’s been plenty for coaches to watch the last few weeks, as NFL offseason programs have started to ramp up with the summer approaching. Robert Saleh has actually taken more from listening. “We have so many new faces, both offensively and defensively,” the Jets coach told me from his house Sunday morning. “And what’s been encouraging through Phase II was to hear it. I always listen to volume, a player’s voice and volume on whether or not he’s understanding. The more he understands, the louder his voice will get. It’s confidence in communication. And so offensively, defensively, as Phase II went, as we went to the last week of Phase II, you could hear the volume of practice increasing in terms of communication. “It’s players speaking to one another, having alerts, being aware of things. So from that regard, it’s good. And you anticipate when it gets faster this week, it’ll have to rebuild again, trying to get comfortable doing it while competing against their teammates.” Organized team activities begin, in earnest, Monday morning across the NFL. In layman’s terms, it really means, finally, football practice can begin. The way the league’s offseason sets up, Phase I of the offseason program is for classroom work, lifting and running; and Phase II is for the beginning of on-field instruction. Phase III, which contains each team’s allotted OTAs and mandatory minicamp, allows for nonpadded, noncontact competitive action out on the field for the first time. So no, this isn’t what you’ll witness in training camp. And yes, everyone still has a long way to go. But for a team like Saleh’s Jets, this is the first chance to see all the new pieces assembled for the first time. Laken Tomlinson lining up opposite Alijah Vera-Tucker. Garrett Wilson catching the ball from Zach Wilson. Sauce Gardner and Jermaine Johnson II lining up on the edges of the secondary and front seven. “The athletes, we’re excited about for sure,” Saleh continued. “Obviously, we believe they fit our system, and fit what we’re trying to get accomplished. Our front seven, it is long and athletic, we’ve got a bunch of three-techniques and a bunch of rush ends—throw four guys on the field and let’s go play. And we got C.J. [Mosley] and Quincy [Williams], and revamped the entire back end … Saleh went on for a while on the roster before stopping and pivoting. “But if you’re really going to comment on something, Albert, it’s gotta be the character,” Saleh said. “And the shift to guys who love this game and love working, love their teammates, love hanging out and want nothing more than to win.” Today’s a new day for everyone in the NFL, as on-field work ramps up. All have big plans. With that established, Saleh isn’t making any proclamations about where all this will lead the roster he and GM Joe Douglas have revamped over the last 17 months. But this much is for sure—he likes who he’s going to work with. There are lots of pro football stories out there worth your attention, even though it’s May. And to me, somehow, even being in New York, the Jets are one that’s overlooked. They’ve got a quarterback going into his second year with an exciting playing style but not a ton from his rookie year to go off of. They’ve brought in five first-round picks over the last two springs, thanks to the Jamal Adams trade. They were major players in free agency in each of the last two offseasons. The time to turn the corner, it would seem, is now, with Douglas heading into his third full year at the helm, and the honeymoons for Saleh and Wilson soon to expire. “I think no matter what type of roster you think you have, and this is where I get cliché on you, I apologize—but it’s the urgency at which you approach every day,” Saleh said, when I asked if urgency to win is ramped up now. “We have this ‘all gas, no brake’ mantra here; what does it mean? It means you go to bed better than when you woke up. Which means you wake up every morning and put your best foot forward and you do everything you can to be your personal best—not the best, but your personal best. “And you’re trying to PR every single day. And you hope, if we do that as a collective group, we’ll love our results. Obviously, the main goal is to win. Obviously, we’re trying to win Super Bowls, all that stuff. But none of that happens unless you really understand the process and how to get there.” Which, then, comes back to that detail of what he’s heard out on the field through the first two phases of this spring’s offseason program—to him, the tone, inflection and force in the players’ voices show they’re starting to get it, which is one of a few reasons why, even if he won’t say it explicitly, the volume in his own voice paints a picture of optimism. And yes, to be clear, Saleh is excited for Phase III. “I think anytime we can get on the grass—I’ll speak for any coach in football—we love being on the grass with our guys,” he said. “The film room is great, the weight room is great, all that stuff is great. But there’s nothing better than being on the grass with the guys. So for that, I’m always excited, when we get those opportunities.” But there are also some specifics that he and I covered, as to just why this team at least has the look of one that could make a significant jump in a division with perhaps the NFL’s best team (the Bills), its preeminent power of the last 20 years (the Patriots) and another up-and-comer that’s been pretty aggressive itself the last couple of months (the Dolphins). That, of course, will have to start with the quarterback. It’s no secret that the Jets have a lot riding on the 22-year-old who went No. 2 in the draft 13 months ago, after a rough rookie year that included three wins, nine touchdown passes, 11 picks and a month missed. The good news is that the lessons of 2021, as the coaches see it, have sunk in for Wilson. In particular, Saleh cited the time he missed, and in particular a game he was out for—the Jets’ 34–31 upset of the eventual conference champion Bengals, in which journeyman backup Mike White threw for 405 yards and three touchdowns—as valuable in showing Wilson where he needed to grow. “Where I think he’s really, really focused is on the more important parts of the game, rather than what he perceived the game to be a year ago,” Saleh said. “A year ago, it felt like he was trying to find ways to make every play, rather than just taking what the defense gives you—and the defense is always giving you something. It’s just a matter of taking it. He’s really learning about space, and he’s able to say, Well, shoot, there’s space. Let me get the ball to my athletes, and my athletes will go make plays. “And I think the starting point for that trigger was the Mike White game against the Bengals. … Mike just played quarterback. He executed the offense and did an unbelievable job doing it. I think from that point on, [Wilson] has really changed, at least in those meeting rooms. That part has been fun to watch.” The idea, Saleh continued, is to feast on layups, and be judicious shooting three-pointers (so to speak). “Every once in a while, you’re going to have to do something special,” Saleh said. “But Tom Brady is Tom Brady because he wasn’t afraid to take layups. And he’s done it, for it seems like 100 years now. But there are other quarterbacks; they all do it. Like [Patrick] Mahomes is the coolest example for me, because everyone goes crazy for his splash plays, but he will play small ball all day with you if you let him. “And I think once Zach realizes that the small-ball element is what creates the explosive plays, and gives you the opportunity to create explosive plays, that’s where I think you’ll see all the special traits he possesses.” One thing that should help is having a growing line (how left tackle Mekhi Becton plays is a big swing factor there), and young weapons like Elijah Moore and Garrett Wilson to throw to, with veterans like Corey Davis and C.J. Uzomah complementing them. And for his part, Wilson has come back thicker and stronger and, per Saleh, “He’s got a mullet going …” Which might be the one thing from Wilson this spring the coach hasn’t really approved of. “I’m bald; I don’t like hair,” he said, laughing. “But he’s in a really good place, I’m just excited to get him to the competitive part. I’m really excited for training camp to be honest with you, because Phase III isn’t going to be overly hard. You get to training camp, and the competitive juices are flying again; that’s gonna be exciting.” Also exciting: how the new pieces on defense are fitting together. This, really, is where Saleh and I went initially, when he was taking me through how he can hear the difference this year in the on-field communication versus where it was at this point in 2021. “Defense is where most of the communicating happens,” he said. “The offense lines up, they do their thing; the only one really doing the talking is the quarterback, making his checks and all that stuff, and maybe the center making some Mike points. Defensively, you’ve got to make all the adjustments, and there was a lot of communication happening. “Lamarcus Joyner missed all of last year, and we added Jordan Whitehead, getting D.J. Reed in there, there’s new faces on that back end. Those three guys in particular, understanding the nuances of our scheme and what we’re being asked to do. The entire safety group, for the most part, is relatively new. … And you can tell they were getting comfortable as Phase II came to a close. Now it’s just, can you take it to Phase III, and let’s roll into training camp.” It’s good news, too, because so much of Saleh’s defense is predicated on playing fast. That the communication is working well this early on the back end, with mainstays like Mosley handling it on the front end, should have everyone in a good spot going into summer. The makeup of the team is getting to where Saleh wants it. And this is probably where there’s some risk of sounding a little cliché again. But the truth is that the general vibe of the team is one thing you actually can read a little into this early in the season, and seeing scenes like Wilson leading teammates into Madison Square Garden for Rangers playoff games does have more than a little meaning for the coach—and maybe as much as what they’re doing inside the team’s walls at this time of year. “The attendance we got was phenomenal, which I’m sure it’s phenomenal for everyone in Phase I and II, even with it being voluntary,” he said. “But I look at it in the way they hang out with one another. You go to the cafeteria; everybody’s hanging out with one another. You go to the weight room, and they’re laughing. On the practice field, they’re talking in stretch lines. There’s just an energy to them. “You’re seeing them at baseball games together, they’re golfing together; it’s not come to work and leave and everyone goes their separate ways. Guys are hanging out when they leave here. These guys actually like one another, and like being around one another; and I think that’s cool.” These things, of course, still have to stand the tests of time, injuries and the inevitable losing streak. But Saleh and Douglas have been pretty intentional on the types of guys they’re bringing in—and that part of the equation does seem to be adding up now. O.K., so now the truth about why no one’s really talking up the Jets right now: The track record is not good. Since making the AFC title game after the 2010 season, New York has gone 8–8, 6–10, 8–8, 4–12, 10–6, 5–11, 5–11, 4–12, 7–9, 2–14 and 4–13, and made the playoffs precisely zero times. That’s 11 years of futility. The challenge of breaking the mentality that surrounds a drought like that, a mentality that the other shoe is always about to drop, remains there. “And that’s the hard part,” Saleh said. “But you go back to the question you asked, about what stood out. You have to understand process. Football is not easy, and so the process of football, and the process of getting to game day is hard. It’s not for everyone. The weight room, the rehab, the hitting, the grind on your body, it is brutal. And so if you do not love this game, you will not enjoy the process. “If you do not enjoy the process, you’re not gonna put everything you can into the process, which means you’re not going to be your best on Sunday. So that goes back to the whole thing we’ve been trying to accomplish here, in bringing in guys who love everything about ball. Because at the end of the day they’re gonna maximize who they are. And you trust that if they maximize who they are, it’s gonna be good enough.” It’s hard to say, in May, whether it will be. But even if Saleh wasn’t making any grandiose predictions that a breakthrough was coming, it really wasn’t hard to sniff out how he feels. “We’re gonna keep that focus,” he continued. “Now, we’re a super young team and we’re going to try to grow up as fast as we can. But I love the direction we’re going.” And Monday morning should be another step in figuring out how soon they get there.
  2. I'll be shocked if they didn't. With them bringing in Ogunjobi & Alexander for visits I would expect one or both to be signed before camp. Then with the quality depth we have at DLine & CB I would expect Douglas to pull a trade for a draft pick or two at the end of camp
  3. Nice to hear from RG3, I hope he's right but I'm more in the Woody camp. We have to be in wildcard contention in December
  4. I know with the wretched football we've seen over the past 10+ years we've been reduced to focusing on the schedule and hoping some "easy" games can get us some wins. But with the improved roster I think its time we leave that mindset behind and expect this team to compete/win against any opponent. At worst I expect this team to be challenging for a wildcard spot in December, so let's go out and beat BAL and get the tiebreaker over them
  5. With the amount of pass rushers we brought in its fair to expect at least 3 sacks a game. So that would be a minimum of 51
  6. What a joke, even on the clip you can see Hill had to stop and wait for the pass
  7. Are we as Jet fans really going to complain about "too many pass rushers"??? Really???
  8. At least playing for a wildcard spot deep into December
  9. Ogunjobi would not be a depth piece, if he's healthy he would be an interior pass rusher who would cause offenses problems: https://www.espn.com/nfl/player/stats/_/id/3050122/larry-ogunjobi Douglas/Saleh aren't fooling around if they bring him in
  10. Why networks are paying announcers the same as players is beyond me. Don't they realize those overpayments are going to come back and bite them in butt???
  11. Here's my thoughts: FS - It has to be Joyner, with such a young secondary we need a vet on the back end to help with alignments/communication. Joyner needs to be an "on-field co-DC" along with Mosley Nickel - Carter was impressive there last year and I don't think anyone will beat him out 3rd LB - It should be a battle between Sherwood, Nasirildeen, Marcell Harris (SF free agent we picked up) and DQ Thomas (UDFA). Harris knows the system and Thomas stats and amount of $$$ given (130K) means the team really likes him
  12. https://www.newyorkjets.com/photos/gallery-best-photos-from-day-1-of-jets-rookie-minicamp
  13. The staff/front office now have 5-6 weeks to analyze the run defense. If it appears shaky I'm sure Douglas will pick up a DT before camp starts. The easiest player to find is a "run stuffing" DT. I'm just glad that we don't have to find a pass rusher anymore, for the first time ever it seems like we have plenty
  14. Based on this interview if Gardner was gone it seems we may have taken Stingley
  15. With Douglas and now Jeremiah reporting how Mims is killing the off-season it means one of two things. That it's actually true or they are trying to boost his trade value, I'm hoping its true because a WR corps of Davis, Moore, Wilson, Berrios & Mims is scary
  16. KRL

    OTA Pictures

    Good leg development by Zach Wilson: https://www.newyorkjets.com/photos/gallery-best-photos-of-jets-offseason-field-workouts-phase-2
  17. I bought the narratives of: - The defense doesn't value CBs - The RB position is by committee Therefore I never thought we would draft Gardner high. And I never thought we would take a RB1 so I never saw Hall being taken
  18. Time to put "Deebo-palooza" away, he's not going anywhere. And SF will have issues with him holding out this summer
  19. Interesting tidbit on Johnson and how he taught himself pass rush moves https://www.si.com/nfl/2022/05/02/nfl-draft-howie-roseman-eagles-daily-cover AGGRESSIVE JETS LAND QUITE A CLASS By now, you may have caught the videos the Jets put out—of a celebrating war room after New York took first Sauce Gardner and then Garrett Wilson off the board in the top 10. But what you didn’t see was coach Robert Saleh, after passing off the phone with Wilson (and yelling “G-Dub!!!” to start that conversation), tap GM Joe Douglas on the shoulder. “He’s like, ‘Hey look, if Jermaine [Johnson II] starts falling, let’s go get him,’” Douglas said Saturday afternoon. “And I looked at him and I’m like, ‘Let’s do it.’” That’s how the Jets turned a draft they already really liked into one they loved. This was always going to be a critical class for the future of the franchise. Thanks to deals parting with the team’s first-round picks from 2017 (Jamal Adams) and ’18 (Sam Darnold), Douglas and Saleh went into the weekend with four of the top 40 picks. So as much as the GM, in his third year, and coach, in his second year, are tied to last year’s first-rounder, QB Zach Wilson, how this year’s class pans out will also go a long way in how they’re judged. And the Jets aren’t psychics. They don’t know what Gardner, Wilson and Johnson, or the 36th pick, Iowa State tailback Breece Hall, will collectively become. But they sure didn’t expect it’d play out this way—where the four top-40 picks they came into the weekend with, added to a third-rounder and two fifth-rounders used in trades up, would land them three of the top 10 players on their board and four of the top 20. “We felt like we had a unique opportunity with these four picks at four and 10 and 35 and 38 to be aggressive if it felt right for us,” Douglas said. “The most important thing that we did was rank our top 150 as a group, together, with the scouts and the coaches. We were going over each guy versus each other, so going into the first night, we felt like we had a great group of top-50 players. And from then, we can only control the controllables, and we can’t control who comes up in front of us or who’s willing to trade back if we want to come up.” Sometimes, things just fall into place. It started with Gardner’s availability. The Jets had a good handle on the first two picks, figuring Georgia’s Travon Walker and Michigan’s Aidan Hutchinson were going one and two, in some order. The Texans were the wild card—Douglas and Saleh knew Houston had done its homework on the corners, and all the same the Jets also knew that if the Texans took one, that’d leave New York with a shot to put its top-ranked lineman in the class in front of Zach Wilson. But just before the draft, they’d settled on a plan, and it was one that acknowledged how Saleh’s defense had evolved, in valuing corners differently than teams he coached in Seattle, Jacksonville or San Francisco might have, while still sticking to the scheme’s preference for taller, longer players at the position. “We thought O-linemen could go at one, we thought O-linemen could go at three, so we were prepared for every scenario,” Douglas said. “But the one constant was if he was there, it was going to be Sauce. This was a guy that can be a dynamic guy for us at a premium position, cornerback. It’s been a position that we really haven’t been able to invest a lot of assets in, whether it’s free-agent money or draft picks.” So once the Texans swung on another corner, LSU’s Derek Stingley Jr., even with NC State’s Ickey Ekwonu and Alabama’s Evan Neal there, the call became academic. And then, in Douglas’s words, “It’s nervousness again, because we felt good about our top 10, but you’re hoping for things to fall a certain way.” Which came back to one of Douglas’s goals for the draft, “to do whatever we could to help our young quarterback develop.” Getting him a guy with a shot to be a true No. 1 receiver, of course, qualifies. The Jets saw Garrett Wilson as that guy, and, when he got past the Falcons, who took USC’s Drake London instead, and a tackle was there for Seattle, Douglas could breathe again. “When you just watch the tape, just a great blend of route skill, ball skill, run-after-catch, and big-play ability; there was a multidimensional aspect to his game,” he said. “There was more than one way that he could help you. It just felt like he was a guy who could separate against anybody. He was going to go up and make tough, contested catches. He can run by people if he has to, and then after the catch, he’s elusive.” Just as important was that Wilson, like last year’s second-round pick, Elijah Moore, could separate enough to create easy completions for the quarterback, while also bringing a rare ability to, like Douglas said, make combat catches in 50-50 situations, which should make Zach Wilson’s job easier in giving him layups, while also allowing for him to take more chances. So Wilson went 10th, and then came the tap on the shoulder. And the important thing to start with from there is that Johnson, in the Jets’ predraft meetings, was absolutely a consideration for the 10th pick. Obviously, things played out in a way that made Wilson the one. But Johnson wasn’t far off on the board. “If my board fell a certain way,” Douglas said, “he 100% would’ve been an option for us at 10.” As it was, Douglas and Saleh started getting more serious about a move after the Eagles made their move, from 15 to 13, to get Davis. After the Ravens took Notre Dame S Kyle Hamilton at 14, the calls started. First to the Texans at 15, then to the Commanders at 16 and the Chargers at 17, with one line drawn—Douglas didn’t want to give up both of his second-rounders to move. Then the Brown trade happened, and the Titans got on the clock at 18. With a receiver need just created, and Arkansas’s Treylon Burks there, Robinson wasn’t going to deal 18. But the conversation was good with Douglas, enough so the two agreed to circle back at if things fell in a way where the Jets still wanted to move up. They did, of course. Johnson was there. And the interesting thing was he was there in large part because some of his predraft meetings hadn’t gone well, while a big piece of the Jets’ interest in him was because of his predraft meeting with them, during which he told Douglas that, before he transferred from Georgia to Florida State, he taught himself an array of pass-rush moves via … YouTube. “I felt like him and Jameson Williams were two birds of the same feather in that they bet on themselves to go somewhere else and succeed, and they both hit,” Douglas said. “And I like the fact that he went to a different scheme, different defense, left the place that he would’ve been comfortable as a rotational player, but he took a chance, bet on himself, changed defenses and was ultraproductive as an edge player for them. “The other thing was, it felt like there was five different ways that this guy could get to the quarterback. … We were talking about Georgia. And I just said, ‘Hey Jermaine, I heard you guys don’t practice one-on-one pass rush all that much.’ And he said, ‘No, we don’t do it as much as other places.’ I said, ‘I see that. I watched the tape this year. You got so many different ways you can get to the quarterback. How did you develop that if you never really practice it before?’ He said, ‘Honestly, I would YouTube different pass-rush moves, watch and just practice it by myself. I just taught myself how to do it.’” So the Jets traded third- and fifth-round picks to get him at 26, securing a third player off that top 10 that Douglas, Saleh and their staffs had compiled. On Douglas’s way home Thursday, he noticed his 14-year-old son had sent him a text, right around when the 13th or 14th pick was made: “Jermaine Johnson’s falling.” So Friday morning, Douglas’s son said to him, “You got Jermaine!” Douglas responded, “Yeah.” “Yeah, you saw my text,” he said. “Obviously, you saw my text. That’s why you did it.” Douglas laughed, knowing how clear it was how fortunate he’d been the night before, in how things fell into place as they did. And hours later, he’d cap that with a short trade up, from 38 to 36, sending a fifth-rounder to the crosstown Giants to land Hall, another piece to help Wilson be his best. Now, what’s left is to put all that good fortune to work. “The last two drafts, some things bounced our way, and some guys fell to us that we didn’t really think had an opportunity to fall to us,” he said. “But through it all, I feel like the constant has been every person on staff, and their ability to connect with each other, communicate, get on the same page, hash out different opinions in a real productive, respectful environment and ultimately come to the best decisions for the team.” Whether they’re the right decisions will play out over time.
  20. Here's a controversial thought I had and Daniel Jeremiah said as he talked about the Jet draft. Its fair to say that Zach Wilson has a better offensive cast around him than Aaron Rodgers has in GB
  21. Defense - I think we are going to see some drastic scheme changes. The DLine will still be the focus, but the additions to the secondary leads me to believe we will see: * More 1 on 1 coverage * Less zone concepts * More blitzing from the secondary, particularly the CBs * More positional switching - You don't spend the amount of free agency $$$ (DJ Reed & Jordan Whitehead) and draft capital (Ahmad Gardner) on players to have them play vanilla Cover 2/ Cover 3 all game. Particularly when their tape showed that they're physical, can press cover and blitz - With the depth we have in the secondary we should see massive "cross training" as we head to camp. The staff flipped Jason Pinnock to safety last year and in my opinion we should do the same with Bryce Hall. A secondary that has "positionless" players can confuse QBs and lead to INTs - John Franklin-Myers should "float" between DE and DT based on the situation Offense - I believe the drafting of Breece Hall will shift the RB position from a committee approach to a RB1, RB2, RB3 structure. Hall's size and college production showed he can be RB1 (20-25 touches) and even though Michael Carter was impressive last year he did get banged up. Which leads me to believe he would be better suited to a RB2 (10-15 touches) role. The fight for the RB3 role will be wicked between Tevin Coleman, Ty Johnson, Zonovan Knight, Austin Walter and Lamical Perine - With actual TEs on the roster this year I would expect to see some of the "SF Kittle" package incorporated into the passing game - I'm glad we didn't double dip at WR in the draft. Because I want to see if Denzel Mims has any shot at reaching his draft potential. I'm not expecting it but if Mims somehow finds his game a WR corps with him being WR5 would be scary - Now its all on Zach Wilson to thrive in this offense. Because Joe Douglas has done for him everything Mike Maccagnan didn't do for Sam Darnold. The OLine has been revamped and there is quality and depth at the skill positions. Wilson now needs to show what he did in the TB game for an entire 17 game schedule
  22. Reminds me of LeSean McCoy
  23. https://www.newyorkjets.com/
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