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Why Jets' Erin Henderson decided to help Darron Lee instead of ignore him


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Why Jets' Erin Henderson decided to help Darron Lee instead of ignore him

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By Darryl Slater | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

One of the things the Jets like so far about rookie inside linebacker Darron Lee, their first-round draft pick, is that he acknowledges how little he understands about what it takes to thrive in the NFL. 

From Day 1 with the Jets, Lee hasn't taken a know-it-all approach. And the minute Erin Henderson noticed Lee's openness to learn, he decided he'd help the kid. 

"That was one of the first things I said when they drafted him: Once I get a chance to meet him and see what kind of kid he is, I can either be all for him and try to give him everything I know, or act like I don't even know him at all," Henderson told NJ Advance Media during June minicamp. 

After all, Henderson is the starter at the inside linebacker position next to "mike" linebacker David Harris. And Lee is currently Henderson's backup. So Henderson, who has played seven NFL seasons, doesn't really have to help Lee. 

"Because this is a competition, and this is a business at the end of the day," Henderson said. "And we are in competition. But I think the better he plays, the better it'll be for all of us. So it's my job as an older guy to try to help him as much as I can.

"As long as he's willing to learn and willing to listen, I'm willing to help him out. He came into the room with a smile on his face. He didn't come in and try to not fit in. His willingness to learn and his eagerness to learn definitely makes it easier to deal with him and get along with him. I don't have to treat him like a kid." 

Lee has made a point to pepper Henderson and Harris with questions about the Jets' defense. 

"I always pick their minds," Lee told NJ Advance Media. "I'm always asking them questions. That's practically every day. I feel like they get annoyed at me sometimes, because I'm literally asking so many questions.

"It's not just Erin. I'm asking Dave questions, too. I'm slowly but surely trying to add a little bit of mike [linebacker] into my game, too, because the more you know, the more useful you can be." 

Asking questions and acting modestly about his lack of knowledge just makes sense to Lee, who never considered behaving otherwise this spring. 

"One, it's a completely different scheme, so I obviously don't know anything about it," he said. "So obviously I'm learning in that aspect. I've never been necessarily an inside backer when I was at Ohio State. I have a lot to learn.

"If I were to come in and think that, 'Oh, I know this and that,' one, that's just stupid. That's just dumb. I don't know how anybody, if you've never played in that scheme before, how you could come in and think you know what you're doing. Come in having the confidence that you can play. But if you come in and think that you know what you're doing already, that's asinine. That doesn't make any sense." 

Lee is comfortable enough with Harris, a 10th-year veteran, that they get into good-natured debates about whether LeBron James or Michael Jordan is better. 

"I call LeBron the king — King James," Lee said. "And he's like, 'Yeah, that's yourking.' I'm like, 'All right, Dave.' Because Dave loves Michael Jordan. I love Michael Jordan, too. Don't get me wrong. I watched 'Space Jam' 800 million times. I'm just saying right now, LeBron is my guy."  

Lee, who could help the Jets in pass coverage this season as a sub packages player, is absolutely striving to contribute as a rookie, even if he doesn't become an immediate star like James did with the Cavaliers back in 2003. 

"I figure that's why they brought me in here, is to contribute," he said. "I keep it pretty black and white with that. I feel they brought me in here to help contribute as soon as possible, so that's what I'm going to build toward."

And Henderson is happy to help, with things like leverage and alignment pointers. 

"It's kind of cool, because we have our walk-throughs and he's kind of in my hip pocket through all the walk-throughs," Henderson said. "I get a chance, in between plays, to kind of talk to him and let him know what's going on, or what I'm seeing, or why I did a thing a certain way." 

Though Lee knows he faces a steep learning curve with the Jets, one part of his NFL transition has been easy compared to his time at Ohio State — weight lifting. 

"I would say the lifts are a lot easier," he said. "Ohio State's stuff was pretty brutal. At Ohio State, they were trying to kill you. They had to, especially as a freshman. They were trying to kill you, to get you acclimated to what they do. Here, not so much. And thank goodness. It's completely different." 

Darryl Slater may be reached at dslater@njadvancemedia.com.

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Why Jets' Erin Henderson decided to help Darron Lee instead of ignore him

One of the things the Jets like so far about rookie inside linebacker Darron Lee, their first-round draft pick, is that he acknowledges how little he understands about what it takes to thrive in the NFL. 

From Day 1 with the Jets, Lee hasn't taken a know-it-all approach. And the minute Erin Henderson noticed Lee's openness to learn, he decided he'd help the kid. 

"That was one of the first things I said when they drafted him: Once I get a chance to meet him and see what kind of kid he is, I can either be all for him and try to give him everything I know, or act like I don't even know him at all," Henderson told NJ Advance Media during June minicamp. 

After all, Henderson is the starter at the inside linebacker position next to "mike" linebacker David Harris. And Lee is currently Henderson's backup. So Henderson, who has played seven NFL seasons, doesn't really have to help Lee. 

"Because this is a competition, and this is a business at the end of the day," Henderson said. "And we are in competition. But I think the better he plays, the better it'll be for all of us. So it's my job as an older guy to try to help him as much as I can.

"As long as he's willing to learn and willing to listen, I'm willing to help him out. He came into the room with a smile on his face. He didn't come in and try to not fit in. His willingness to learn and his eagerness to learn definitely makes it easier to deal with him and get along with him. I don't have to treat him like a kid." 

Lee has made a point to pepper Henderson and Harris with questions about the Jets' defense. 

"I always pick their minds," Lee told NJ Advance Media. "I'm always asking them questions. That's practically every day. I feel like they get annoyed at me sometimes, because I'm literally asking so many questions.

"It's not just Erin. I'm asking Dave questions, too. I'm slowly but surely trying to add a little bit of mike [linebacker] into my game, too, because the more you know, the more useful you can be." 

Asking questions and acting modestly about his lack of knowledge just makes sense to Lee, who never considered behaving otherwise this spring. 

"One, it's a completely different scheme, so I obviously don't know anything about it," he said. "So obviously I'm learning in that aspect. I've never been necessarily an inside backer when I was at Ohio State. I have a lot to learn.

"If I were to come in and think that, 'Oh, I know this and that,' one, that's just stupid. That's just dumb. I don't know how anybody, if you've never played in that scheme before, how you could come in and think you know what you're doing. Come in having the confidence that you can play. But if you come in and think that you know what you're doing already, that's asinine. That doesn't make any sense." 

Lee is comfortable enough with Harris, a 10th-year veteran, that they get into good-natured debates about whether LeBron James or Michael Jordan is better. 

"I call LeBron the king — King James," Lee said. "And he's like, 'Yeah, that's your king.' I'm like, 'All right, Dave.' Because Dave loves Michael Jordan. I love Michael Jordan, too. Don't get me wrong. I watched 'Space Jam' 800 million times. I'm just saying right now, LeBron is my guy."  

Lee, who could help the Jets in pass coverage this season as a sub packages player, is absolutely striving to contribute as a rookie, even if he doesn't become an immediate star like James did with the Cavaliers back in 2003. 

"I figure that's why they brought me in here, is to contribute," he said. "I keep it pretty black and white with that. I feel they brought me in here to help contribute as soon as possible, so that's what I'm going to build toward."

And Henderson is happy to help, with things like leverage and alignment pointers. 

"It's kind of cool, because we have our walk-throughs and he's kind of in my hip pocket through all the walk-throughs," Henderson said. "I get a chance, in between plays, to kind of talk to him and let him know what's going on, or what I'm seeing, or why I did a thing a certain way." 

Though Lee knows he faces a steep learning curve with the Jets, one part of his NFL transition has been easy compared to his time at Ohio State — weight lifting. 

"I would say the lifts are a lot easier," he said. "Ohio State's stuff was pretty brutal. At Ohio State, they were trying to kill you. They had to, especially as a freshman. They were trying to kill you, to get you acclimated to what they do. Here, not so much. And thank goodness. It's completely different." 

Darryl Slater may be reached at dslater@njadvancemedia.com. Follow him on Twitter @DarrylSlater. Find NJ.com Jets on Facebook.

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I have high hopes for Lee and have been a fan of Henderson. He said it best, while they are competing for the position, the better each plays, the better it is for the team. I love that attitude from our players.

The only thing Henderson needs to do for Lee, is take him by your smoker on a daily basis.

He wouldn't be a scrawny shrimp in a few short weeks.

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6 minutes ago, peebag said:

You're a bore anymore.

<beatbox>

Sip the juice, I got enough to go around

Hack's gonna hit Devin Smith downtown 

Even though Erin is a woman's name

you know my mans' got game

put fools to shame

Bitches in the Hall of Fame

Check out this ridiculous freestyle

<beatbox>

Idzik. Mangini. Parcells got the groceries.

I'm writing they obituaries

Word. Shout out to Rex. Having foot sex in the nitrous Lex.

Could've drafted Lynch and I don't mean Marshawn.

Eating haters like Skittles.

shoot from deep like Kittles.

you're a bore anymore

Psyche, check out the encore.

 

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You have to Love Lee when he said the following:

"If I were to come in and think that, 'Oh, I know this and that,' one, that's just stupid. That's just dumb. I don't know how anybody, if you've never played in that scheme before, how you could come in and think you know what you're doing. Come in having the confidence that you can play. But if you come in and think that you know what you're doing already, that's asinine. That doesn't make any sense." 

That tells you all you need to know about this guy. 

I remember Sanchez laughing at Joe Namath when Namath said that "Sanchez was holding the ball improperly and that it would lead to fumbles".  Sanchez' arrogance at seeming to think he knew it all led to hot dogs, nose picking and FUMBLES...and of course his being let go by the Jets....

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3 hours ago, T0mShane said:

<beatbox>

Sip the juice, I got enough to go around

Hack's gonna hit Devin Smith downtown 

Even though Erin is a woman's name

you know my mans' got game

put fools to shame

Bitches in the Hall of Fame

Check out this ridiculous freestyle

<beatbox>

Idzik. Mangini. Parcells got the groceries.

I'm writing they obituaries

Word. Shout out to Rex. Having foot sex in the nitrous Lex.

Could've drafted Lynch and I don't mean Marshawn.

Eating haters like Skittles.

shoot from deep like Kittles.

you're a bore anymore

Psyche, check out the encore.

 

I hate while people.  Is it ok to say that?  

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34 minutes ago, The Crusher said:

I hate while people.  Is it ok to say that?  

 

5 minutes ago, Greenseed4 said:

T0m Shane's freestyle rap is to the ears :: what a white man dancing is to the eyes. 

Go back to your Drake tracks, pasty ninjas. My rhymes are strictly built for Cuban links. 🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥

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Just now, T0mShane said:

 

Go back to your Drake tracks, pasty ninjas. My rhymes are strictly built for Cuban links. 🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥

I'd say you def march to your own beat...but that would imply that you could keep one. 

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4 hours ago, T0mShane said:

<beatbox>

Sip the juice, I got enough to go around

Hack's gonna hit Devin Smith downtown 

Even though Erin is a woman's name

you know my mans' got game

put fools to shame

Bitches in the Hall of Fame

Check out this ridiculous freestyle

<beatbox>

Idzik. Mangini. Parcells got the groceries.

I'm writing they obituaries

Word. Shout out to Rex. Having foot sex in the nitrous Lex.

Could've drafted Lynch and I don't mean Marshawn.

Eating haters like Skittles.

shoot from deep like Kittles.

you're a bore anymore

Psyche, check out the encore.

 

You're an embarrassment to wiggers everywhere. 

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14 minutes ago, sourceworx said:

You're an embarrassment to wiggers everywhere. 

 

48 minutes ago, Greenseed4 said:

I'd say you def march to your own beat...but that would imply that you could keep one. 

You know what? I don't think you two fellas understand the rap game.

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2 hours ago, T0mShane said:

You know what? I don't think you two fellas understand the rap game.

 

1 hour ago, sourceworx said:

I am an African American. You offend me. 

The Rap game & African American are mutually exclusive.

Case in Point:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

:D

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12 hours ago, T0mShane said:

<beatbox>

Sip the juice, I got enough to go around

Hack's gonna hit Devin Smith downtown 

Even though Erin is a woman's name

you know my mans' got game

put fools to shame

Bitches in the Hall of Fame

Check out this ridiculous freestyle

<beatbox>

Idzik. Mangini. Parcells got the groceries.

I'm writing they obituaries

Word. Shout out to Rex. Having foot sex in the nitrous Lex.

Could've drafted Lynch and I don't mean Marshawn.

Eating haters like Skittles.

shoot from deep like Kittles.

you're a bore anymore

Psyche, check out the encore.

 

Sipping juice with enough to go around/

blunts and pouring crown, trust, we tore it down/

Aaron is the way to spell it... just page Ellen/

and we ain't jealous of you patriots and your caged felon/

my mans got game, he had a girl..bad blond with boobs/

but now all he ever sees the pad lock in rooms/

Bleeding green like I drank some shamrock booze/

I got some Hancock moves.. Catch me flying around/

and we'll silence em' now, when we win the super bowl, **** the Giants in town/

i riot, I'm foul, I'm a tyrant now, these teams are thirsty for the crown they broke the fire hydrant down/

.....R-R-REMIXXXXX

 

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This could also be understood as him having "NO instincts" for playing linebacker. I mean, really? This guy played a in pro style defense his entire career at Ohio State under one the best Head Coaches in the nation and he doesn't understand?

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19 hours ago, Charlie Brown said:

You have to Love Lee when he said the following:

"If I were to come in and think that, 'Oh, I know this and that,' one, that's just stupid. That's just dumb. I don't know how anybody, if you've never played in that scheme before, how you could come in and think you know what you're doing. Come in having the confidence that you can play. But if you come in and think that you know what you're doing already, that's asinine. That doesn't make any sense." 

That tells you all you need to know about this guy. 

I remember Sanchez laughing at Joe Namath when Namath said that "Sanchez was holding the ball improperly and that it would lead to fumbles".  Sanchez' arrogance at seeming to think he knew it all led to hot dogs, nose picking and FUMBLES...and of course his being let go by the Jets....

Mark Sanchez SUCKED and was just a bad pick, SAME as Darron Lee....

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