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Taking a look at TJ Barnes

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By Glenn Naughton - Air Force Jet Fan

 

Just like every other NFL team getting ready to kick off the exhibition season, the New York Jets have plenty of big questions heading in to their pre-season opener. How will Geno Smith look in year two following an up and down rookie season? How will the secondary perform without an established dominant presence at the CB position to look to on game day? Among the many young guards on the roster, who will start on the left side, and who will step up if Willie Colon doesn’t last the full sixteen game schedule? One of the biggest questions in camp, (at least in a physical sense), that is rarely discussed yet still intriguing.

 

Who is TJ Barnes?

 

After going undrafted out of Georgia Tech, Barnes spent some time with the Jacksonville Jaguars and hung around until their final round of cuts before being let go. After giving Barnes a look, the Jets liked him enough to add him to their practice squad, where he spent 2013 season. For a team that boasts a defensive line that can make a case for being the best in the NFL, catching the eye of Rex Ryan and his staff is an accomplishment in itself. At 6’ 7’’ and 350+ pounds, Barnes is a physical specimen that will get a shot from somebody based solely on his size. For a man of Barnes stature, he moves much better than one might expect having run a 5.22 40 yard dash at the combine in Indianapolis. This surely played a role in Barnes leading all Georgia Tech defensive linemen in tackles (28) during his senior season while playing his first season as a NT in a 3-4 alignment. Despite having experience in a 3-4 and 4-3, Barnes is still a raw prospect.

 

Serving as a back-up for his first three seasons reduced the number of reps he got, but he was listed at 360 lbs in college, so even as a starter he may have had fewer reps than a smaller DT/NT.

 

We haven’t heard Barnes’ name mentioned much in camp with the exception of getting in to an altercation with O-lineman Will Campbell on day 8, but that may change with the pre-season just a few days away.

 

So when the second and third stringers are on the field in the coming weeks, Barnes is definitely a player worth looking out for. After all, you won’t have to look that hard.

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I would love for him to be our new Kris Jenkins, with that size. Realistically though, he gets cut.

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TJ Barnes

Just like every other NFL team getting ready to kick off the exhibition season, the New York Jets have plenty of big questions heading in to their pre-season opener. How will Geno Smith look in year two following an up and down rookie season? How will the secondary perform without an established dominant presence at the CB position to look to on game day? Among the many young guards on the roster, who will start on the left side, and who will step up if Willie Colon doesn’t last the full sixteen game schedule? One of the biggest questions in camp, (at least in a physical sense), that is rarely discussed yet still intriguing.

Who is TJ Barnes?

After going undrafted out of Georgia Tech, Barnes spent some time with the Jacksonville Jaguars and hung around until their final round of cuts before being let go. After giving Barnes a look, the Jets liked him enough to add him to their practice squad, where he spent 2013 season. For a team that boasts a defensive line that can make a case for being the best in the NFL, catching the eye of Rex Ryan and his staff is an accomplishment in itself. At 6’ 7’’ and 350+ pounds, Barnes is a physical specimen that will get a shot from somebody based solely on his size. For a man of Barnes stature, he moves much better than one might expect having run a 5.22 40 yard dash at the combine in Indianapolis. This surely played a role in Barnes leading all Georgia Tech defensive linemen in tackles (28) during his senior season while playing his first season as a NT in a 3-4 alignment. Despite having experience in a 3-4 and 4-3, Barnes is still a raw prospect.

Serving as a back-up for his first three seasons reduced the number of reps he got, but he was listed at 360 lbs in college, so even as a starter he may have had fewer reps than a smaller DT/NT.

We haven’t heard Barnes’ name mentioned much in camp with the exception of getting in to an altercation with O-lineman Will Campbell on day 8, but that may change with the pre-season just a few days away.

So when the second and third stringers are on the field in the coming weeks, Barnes is definitely a player worth looking out for. After all, you won’t have to look that hard.

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Barnes is a really big man.  Hopefully at that size he can stick and make the team.  Can he learn how to play o line?

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Barnes is a really big man.  Hopefully at that size he can stick and make the team.  Can he learn how to play o line?

 

I think he's gonna' have a hell of a time making the final 53.  If he shows anything at all in the pre-season, I could see him getting snatched up by a team in need of a big body if the Jets try to put him on the practice squad. 

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I think he's gonna' have a hell of a time making the final 53.  If he shows anything at all in the pre-season, I could see him getting snatched up by a team in need of a big body if the Jets try to put him on the practice squad. 

I do not disagree, considering he is on the defensive side of the ball (d-line), which is the Jets biggest strength going into this season.  But you have got to find a way to make use of that kind of size.... But I guess if he was all that he would have stuck with the Jaguars.....

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I think he's gonna' have a hell of a time making the final 53.  If he shows anything at all in the pre-season, I could see him getting snatched up by a team in need of a big body if the Jets try to put him on the practice squad. 

the next Ropati Pitoitua. 

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I do not disagree, considering he is on the defensive side of the ball (d-line), which is the Jets biggest strength going into this season.  But you have got to find a way to make use of that kind of size.... But I guess if he was all that he would have stuck with the Jaguars.....

 

I was thinking along the same lines.  Gus Bradley has a rep for being a solid defensive guy and the Jags aren't that great.  It's a good sign that he was one of their final cuts, and it could be that they saw how raw he was and didn't want to invest the time.  With no rush to add D-linemen, the Jets could afford to bring him along.  Again, interesting prospect at that size who may become a contributor one day, or he could be on the streets in a month. 

Edited by AirForceJetFan

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the next Ropati Pitoitua. 

 

Yep, he's turned out to be a pretty damn good player.  Jets were just too deep on the DL.

Edited by AirForceJetFan

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Good stuff Glen, so you're the new blogger that max had the wanted poster up for? Antwan Barnes is the guy who I think could be the most pleasant surprise this year if he can stay healthy, he could be a big sack guy-in 2011 he had 11 sacks for the Bolts

 

Oops. looking at the Ourlads depth Chart I'm sad to report that my guy there, Antwan Barnes is on the PUP list, which obviously makes it very hard for him to be an impact player for the 2014 New York Football Jets.

Edited by SoFlaJets

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Good stuff Glen, so you're the new blogger that max had the wanted poster up for? Antwan Barnes is the guy who I think could be the most pleasant surprise this year if he can stay healthy, he could be a big sack guy-in 2011 he had 11 sacks for the Bolts

 

Oops. looking at the Ourlads depth Chart I'm sad to report that my guy there, Antwan Barnes is on the PUP list, which obviously makes it very hard for him to be an impact player for the 2014 New York Football Jets.

 

Yep, Max was cool enough to let me get involved a little bit and I'm happy to do it.  I love this place. 

 

I know, losing Barnes last season really hurt.  Looking at the few games he played in, he definitely made an impact.  I was hoping he'd be back to 100% this season because even if Coples does come along, you can never have too many pass rushers.

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Here is a piece that I read about him losing 25 lbs on the caveman diet.  Not sure what that leaves him at.  He was 362 last year, but in college there was a piece about him losing 24-30 lbs to hit 347 his senior year.  Obviously the kid struggles some with his weight.  Even at 362 he looked well proportioned and not a fat load like Harrison or Ellis.  He is not likely to make the 53, but I am very interested to see him Thursday.  These big guys often take time to develop, so it is possible he will be a player.

 

 

 

For T.J. Barnes, a Matter of Losses and Gains

Posted Jun 24, 2014

Charlie-Frankel60x60.jpgCharlie FrankelReporter

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Jets’ Nose Tackle Has Shed Pounds in His Bid to Show He Belongs on the Roster

tj-barnes-header.jpg

It’s easy to see why the Green & White added T.J. Barnes and his 6’7”, 364-pound frame to the practice squad last October. After all, you can’t teach size.

“When I came in last year, it was like, ‘OK, cool, practice squad. Let’s go destroy the offense,’ ” the 24-year-old nose tackle said.

Barnes wreaked enough havoc to earn himself a reserve/future contract by year’s end, but sheer mass will only get you so far in the NFL.

“This year, it’s been more than just going through the motions,” he said. “I have to learn the plays now and really understand the system so that when training camp starts and it’s all full speed, I’m ready to go.”

Barnes knows that mastering head coach Rex Ryan’s defensive scheme will be a prerequisite in graduating from the practice squad, and the Georgia Tech product soaked in as much as he could during OTAs and minicamps in an effort to do so.

We all have our preferred learning styles, though, and T.J.’s no different.

temp20140619-ALP_4960--nfl_mezz_1280_102
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VIEW GALLERY | 20 Photos
Minicamp - DLine Having Fun with the Ball
“The biggest challenge for me is I hate watching,” he said. “That’s where you gain a lot of knowledge because you’re learning from other people's mistakes and it improves your own habits. But I always like playing.”

 

If learning from observing is Barnes’ No. 1 challenge, eating healthy is a close second.

“I love candy,” he said with a grin, “Lifesavers especially. But I needed to lose weight for my health and because the coaches wanted me to play lighter and faster, so I went on a diet and lost 25 pounds since January.”

Cutting out candy was only part of Barnes’ weight-loss secret. He also had a month of juicing and several weeks of the “caveman diet.”

“If a caveman couldn’t eat it back then, I wasn’t allowed to eat it, either,” he explained.

Barnes is banking on the fact that his improved fitness and sharpened mind will lead to an increased performance on the field and, eventually, a spot on the 53-man roster.

 
Buried behind Damon “Snacks” Harrison and Kenrick Ellis on the depth chart, it’ll be a challenge for Barnes to rise up past the practice squad. But after conquering candy and showing patience from the sideline, it’s nothing he can’t handle.

 

Until then, “It’s cool just being around the guys,” he said. “I think they’re starting to take to me a lot, a little bit more every day, and just being with them, it’s always funny. Somebody on the D-line always has a joke to say off the field. On the field we’re still joking and laughing but it’s business and we take our jobs very seriously. There’s no place I’d rather be.”

 

http://www.newyorkjets.com/news/article-5/For-TJ-Barnes-a-Matter-of-Losses-and-Gains/672f15b2-9756-4054-93ab-72a548f81e4d

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I don't expect much, if any role for him this season other than continuing his learning curve.  Next year, after Ellis has moved on, he could be an important piece in the DL.   Perfect timing.

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Here is a piece that I read about him losing 25 lbs on the caveman diet.  Not sure what that leaves him at.  He was 362 last year, but in college there was a piece about him losing 24-30 lbs to hit 347 his senior year.  Obviously the kid struggles some with his weight.  Even at 362 he looked well proportioned and not a fat load like Harrison or Ellis.  He is not likely to make the 53, but I am very interested to see him Thursday.  These big guys often take time to develop, so it is possible he will be a player.

 

 

http://www.newyorkjets.com/news/article-5/For-TJ-Barnes-a-Matter-of-Losses-and-Gains/672f15b2-9756-4054-93ab-72a548f81e4d

 

That's what jumped out at me about his combine footage.  He did not look at all like a guy who weighed that much.  Far quicker than I would have thought in a million years.  The physical tools are there, now the Jets just have to turn him in to a player who can succeed at this level.

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