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Apparently, the word from Charlotte was not what the Jets were hoping for.

According to Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network, the Jets are shutting down center Nick Mangold, after he got a second opinion on his ankle today from Dr. Robert Anderson today.

Mangold came back after a four-game absence, but wasn’t able to finish Monday’s game against the Colts.And while there’s a ceiling on how much a 3-9 team will miss any player over the last four, there is reason to wonder about Mangold’s future there.

He’ll turn 33 in January, and he’s due nearly $8.5 million next year ($6.075 million in base salary and a $2.4 million roster bonus). That’s a lot of money for an aging center, and it could put his future there in jeopardy.

>     http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2016/12/08/jets-shutting-down-nick-mangold-after-second-opinion/

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cimini_rich_m.jpg&w=160&h=160&scale=crop

Rich CiminiESPN Staff Writer 

Surgery is a possibility for Jets C Nick Mangold (ankle), although the team will take a conservative approach at first. He has one year left on his contract, with a $9.1 M cap charge. Clearly, his future is up in the air.

 

>     http://www.espn.com/nfl/team/_/name/nyj/new-york-jets

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-- The day after the New York Jets placed veteran center Nick Mangold on injured reserve, coach Todd Bowles said the loss of the seven-time Pro Bowler for the rest of the season is unfortunate but won’t be an emotional blow to the team.“He’s one of the leaders, but it’s not an emotional blow, because he missed quite a bit of time," Bowles said of Mangold, who missed four weeks with an ankle injury before returning to play in Monday night’s 41-10 loss to the Indianapolis Colts and being reinjured in that game.

“It’s a blow from a leadership standpoint, that you know he’s always around and he’s going to be there," Bowles said of Mangold, 32. “But at the same time, we’ve been playing with the other guy [backup center Wes Johnson]. So from that standpoint, it’s not emotional; you just feel sorry for the man."Johnson, a 6-foot-5, 297-pound third-year pro out of Vanderbilt, called it “a shame" to see Mangold’s season end prematurely. But he acknowledged that Mangold’s absence offers him an “opportunity" he hopes to be able to take advantage of, starting with Sunday's visit to the 1-11 San Francisco 49ers.

Johnson said he hopes he’s done enough to convince the Jets they can rely on him.

“I think I’ve played well," he said. “Obviously, there are things that I learned that hopefully I’ll take going into this week, and hopefully I’ll focus on the fact that Nick’s on IR and I’ve got to play the rest of the season later."

Bowles said Johnson has played well so far in replacing Mangold. “Wes has done a good job," Bowles said. “He’s getting better every week. The big thing is, he’s smart and he’s a fighter."Johnson, who said he is comfortable playing any position on the offensive line, said he should be even more comfortable now given how much time he spent this summer working with second-year quarterback Bryce Petty, who has taken over for veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick as the Jets’ starter.

“It’s good. It’s kind of the same thing," Johnson said of his and Petty’s rise to starting roles. “We feel like we’re growing together. He’s becoming more comfortable as I’m becoming more comfortable."

>     http://www.espn.com/blog/new-york-jets/post/_/id/65491/jets-wesley-johnson-embraces-opportunity-to-replace-injured-nick-mangold

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Inside the Numbers: Centers of Attention

Posted 4 hours ago

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From John Schmitt through Nick Mangold, the Jets Have Always Found Their Man in the Middle


We wish Nick Mangold a quick rehab on injured reserve and into the offseason and a return to form in 2017. But his departure gives us a chance to reflect on what can arguably be called the five "eras" of Jets center.

It could be luck or foresight or a mixture of both, but the franchise has had a remarkable run of centers from the Sixties to today, with very little buffer from one to the next.It began with John Schmitt, the free agent from Hofstra who took over the pivot in Joe Namath's first full year as the starting QB in 1966 and held it without missing a game through 1973.

Next up: Joe Fields, the Jets' 14th-round pick from Widener, who took over the job midway through his second season of 1976 and held it with few hiccups for the next decade.Then came Jim Sweeney's turn. Sweeney, a second-round pick out of Pitt in '84, started at LG and LT his first four seasons. Ultimately he moved to the middle and didn't depart until after the '94 season.

After a brief hiatus, Kevin Mawae arrived as an unrestricted free agent in 1998 and masterfully took over the center position until an elbow injury in 2005.Mawae's 125 consecutive starts including playoff games is the Jets' center standard, and Mangold almost matched it. Starting as a rookie on opening day in 2006, Mangold went 89 starts before an ankle injury sidelined him for two games in '11, then reeled off another 59 before another rest.

 

Seasons Jets Gms Center     Starts     Long Streak Pro Bowls
1965-73 115 John Schmitt 115 115 0
1976-86 171 Joe Fields 152 67 2
1988-94 113 Jim Sweeney 111 68 0
1998-2005 135 Kevin Mawae 125 125 6
2006-16 179 Nick Mangold 171 89 7
 

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40/40 Vision
Was Monday night's game a tiring one for Robby Anderson, the free agent rookie WR who was targeted a career-high 12 times vs. the Colts?

"Kinda," Robby admitted, "but I love this. I'm going to go till I fall out."

Anderson fell down once, but that was a good thing — he tumbled to the turf with the 40-yard TD strike from Bryce Petty in the fourth quarter, his first pro TD grab.And with that catch, Anderson and Petty, coupled with Matt Forté and Ryan Fitzpatrick, who found each other on a 40-yard catch-and-run in the second quarter, earned a distinction in franchise history. It was only the fourth time the Jets had at least two 40-yard completions in a game thrown by two different quarterbacks. The first three:

■ In the 1962 opener at Oakland, starter Butch Songin hit none other than Don Maynard with a third-quarter longball for a 64-yard touchdown. But Lee Grosscup replaced Songin before and after and found Art Powell with 80- and 64-yard touchdown strikes.

■ Six years later, Joe Namath and Maynard hooked up with Maynard for a 54-yard score, then rested as Babe Parilli came in and connected with Bake Turner (40-yard TD) and Maynard (47-yard TD).

■ This pass oddity didn't happen for the next 40 years, then it occurred on back-to-back pass plays in the 2009 AFC Championship Game at Indianapolis. Mark Sanchez aired out a 40/40 ball (40 yards in the air, 40 after the catch) for an 80-yard score to Braylon Edwards. The next throw by the Jets was by Brad Smith, off a direct snap, for a 45-yard completion to Jerricho Cotchery.

 

>     http://www.newyorkjets.com/news/article-randylangefb/Inside-the-Numbers-Centers-of-Attention/c3b791e3-e5e0-4002-8310-ab919e22a7ad

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 -- Jets linebacker Jordan Jenkins seemed to know what was playing out in front of him. He saw this reporter walk over to the locker of teammate Brian Winters, and the smile instantly spread across his face.

"Contract year!" he shouted from a few feet away "Contract year!"

Jenkins is right. This is Winters' contract year, and his stock has never been higher. 

After struggling a bit his first two years in the league, Winters has blossomed since moving from left guard to right. He replaced an injured Willie Colon in 2015, started the final 12 games of the season and played well. This year, he's one of ProFootballFocus.com's best interior offensive linemen. It's why re-signing him must be priority No. 1 for general manager Mike Maccagnan.

Winters has proven to be an above average run blocker, and tremendous in pass protection. Playing on a line marred in uncertainty, he's one of the few unquestioned positives and a budding star up front."When I first got here, I went through growing pains," Winters told NJ Advance Media. "I never played inside in my life, and they kind of just threw me in there. I settled in at right guard, figured things out, and I've been going from there.

"I'm pretty sure I proved myself well enough last year. This year, it's just been about building off of that."

There are a laundry list of issues with the Jets' roster. Maccagnan is going to have his work cut out for him this offseason. Among the many things he'll have to address is the offensive line.The Jets are going to need to new offensive tackles. Breno Giacomini and Ryan Clady are likely gone for injury reasons. They could be in the market for a center, too. Nick Mangold is getting older (he'll turn 33 in January), his body is breaking down, and the Jets can free $9.075 million with his release. All this does is increase Winters' value. Not only is he young (25) and having the best year of his career, but Maccagnan can't afford to dig another hole when so many need filling.

If it's up to Winters, he won't be going anywhere.

"100 percent," Winters said when asked if he wants to return. "I love what has been going on here. I would love to continue to play here. I've built something here. I don't want to leave it."

The real question ? Just how much is it going to cost to keep him in green.

While they aren't valued as much as tackles, guards are getting paid more and more each year. The Ravens gave Kelechi Osemele a five-year, $58 million deal this March, and the Vikings a $26 million contract over four years to Alex Boone. In 2015, the Jets signed James Carpenter to a four-year deal worth $19 million.The argument can be made Winters is playing better ball than all three, except maybe Osemele, at the time of their respective payments."He's done a good job," offensive coordinator Chan Gailey said earlier this year. "He continues to get better. I thought he had a good year last and he continues to get better."Winters is well aware of the money being thrown at guards. And he knows, eventually, he'll get his chunk of the pie, too.

For the Jets sake, they best be the ones serving it up.

"I've seen it," Winters said, "but I don't want to jinx myself or anything. I just want to continue to work and go from there. It's obviously good. People are finally noticing the value in the position."But I try not to let it bother me. I worry about everything game-by-game. I know the rest will come."

>        http://www.nj.com/jets/index.ssf/2016/12/re-signing_brian_winters_should_be_jets_top_priori.html#incart_river_index

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-- Leonard Williams had a goal entering this season: He wanted sacks. 

Thirteen games in, he has them. A lot of them, actually. Seven, to be exact.But the Jets defensive end isn't satisfied. Not even close.

"I want more," Williams told NJ Advance Media with a smile. "I always want more."

It's easy to look at Williams, whom the Jets drafted with the No. 6 pick in 2015, and find nothing wrong. He's a massive physical beast (6-5, 302 pounds), and his production is undeniable (55 tackles, two forced fumbles, nine tackles for a loss).But when the 22-year-old watches film, he becomes his harshest critic.

Maybe it's a bull rush when he should have used a swim, poor hand placement that slowed him off the line? Maybe he took an angle outside, when he should have cut in? Each game, he sees two or three opportunities missed to make a big play."Even when I get a sack or a big play in a game, I still see times where I would have someone beat and didn't finish my move," Williams said. "I know I've improved my numbers a lot this year, but I can keep growing.

"Not a lot of fans can see through the stats. When I'm watching film, I see I can be making more plays than I am right now."

So many in Williams' position would be content, happy with the player they are. What impresses the Jets most is his mental maturity. He looks past the plays he is making to focus on those he should be.Williams is obsessed with the nuances of the game. It's why head coach Todd Bowles says he has only started to scratch the surface of his potential."He's understanding blocking schemes a little bit better, and the game has slowed down for him," Bowles said earlier this year. "Before he was just running like a bull in a China shop. Now he understands what's happening to him and he's adjusting.

"He has come along leaps and bounds. The mental part of the game is becoming slow to him, so he's doing a very good job."

Despite playing on a defensive line that includes Pro Bowlers Sheldon Richardson and Muhammad Wilkerson, Williams is regarded by many as the Jets' best defensive player. In almost no time at all, he has seamlessly transitioned from the college game, to pros.Every now and again, Williams says he has to pinch himself. He sees his Twitter mentions filled with praise and compliments, the analysts talking him up, too.But none of it's getting to his head.

"It's honestly really hard to hear," Williams said. "I wouldn't be expecting any of that already. I'm only 22. It feels good to be mentioned with guys that have been doing this for a long time. Hopefully, I can be doing this for a long time as well."I just want to keep working. Keep growing. I love and appreciate all the support, but luckily I do a good job not reading into it."

>       http://www.nj.com/jets/index.ssf/2016/12/jets_leonard_williams_says_more_sacks_are_coming.html#incart_river_index

 

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Jets' Leo (Big Cat) Williams just can't wait to be king of defensive linemen

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- Where's Leo?

A few days before facing the New York Jets, Bill Belichick -- on his weekly coach's show -- devoted most of his telestrator segment to Leonard Williams. He pulled up a clip of Williams facing Miami Dolphins standout Mike Pouncey, theorizing the Jets were employing an old Buddy Ryan philosophy: Put your best player on the center because it gives him a two-way go against what is traditionally the weakest pass-blocking position on the offensive line.

The New England Cheaters coach rolled the tape, showing Williams use an arm-over move to blow past Pouncey so fast that he barely got out of his crouch before the Jets' defensive stud tackled the running back behind the line.

"He's a problem," Belichick said.

As it turned out, Williams lined up at nose tackle only a handful of plays in the Week 12 game against the Cheaters. He's so versatile he can play any position on the defensive line, turning every play into a "Where's Waldo?" game for concerned opponents. Really, he poses a two-pronged problem:

Find him.

Block him.

They haven't been doing a very good job.

Only 29 games into his career, Williams has established himself as the Jets' best player, a bright light in the darkest of seasons. He has almost twice as many sacks (seven) as the team has wins (four), and that pretty much tells the story of 2016. The dreary season continues Saturday night against the Dolphins (8-5), who can help their playoff chances by blocking Williams better than the previous meeting.

Williams is playing so well he has crashed the Pro Bowl conversation. That, he admitted, was a secret goal before the season."That would mean so much to me," he told ESPN.com. "I went into the season with high expectations, and I still want to get a lot more sacks before the season is over. For someone who wants to be great, being able to go to the Pro Bowl in my second year would be huge.

"Usually, I don't set a goal or a number [of sacks]. I just try to go as hard as I can, but the Pro Bowl is definitely one of the things I wanted to accomplish this year."With seven sacks, he's tied for the league lead among interior lineman. The others are Aaron Donald and Gerald McCoy, a couple of perennial Pro Bowlers. In a category called "disrupted dropbacks," which counts sacks, interceptions, batted passes and passes defended, Williams' percentage ranks sixth, according to ESPN Stats & Information. He trails McCoy, Donald, Ndamukong Suh, Fletcher Cox and A'Shawn Robinson.

A potential problem: Williams is listed on the Pro Bowl ballot as a defensive end, not a tackle. Not only is it inaccurate, but it hurts his chances because the defensive-end position is littered with players with high sack totals.Even if he doesn't make the Pro Bowl, Williams has established a reputation around the league. Buffalo Bills coach Rex Ryan called him "a big monster," and Belichick -- not known for hyperbole -- compared him to Richard Seymour, one of the best defensive linemen in Cheaters' history.

"He's just a really good player," Belichick said of Williams. "Plays hard, makes some plays from the backside. He's a good player, hard to block, long, can tip balls."The Jets knew Williams was special when they drafted him sixth overall in 2015, but they didn't think his ascent would happen this quickly. He's still a pup, only 22 years old. In fact, he didn't have his driver's license when he was drafted. Growing up in Daytona Beach, Florida, he didn't start playing organized football until he was 14. He wasn't allowed to play Pop Warner because he exceeded the weight limit, so he played rugby.

"I went into the season with high expectations, and I still want to get a lot more sacks before the season is over."

Leonard Williams

Unfortunately for opponents, there was no weight limit in the Pac-12, where Williams became a dominant player for USC."I never played with a guy as big and athletic as he is," said teammate Matt Forte, who spent eight seasons with the Chicago Bears before signing with the Jets. "The mix of size and athleticism is pretty unique. It's impressive to watch."

One of Williams' most endearing qualities, according to teammates, is his easygoing demeanor. He's the epitome of SoCal cool, laid back and always wearing flipflops, regardless of the weather -- yes, even on sub-freezing days like Thursday. His hair is big and curly and all over the place, which doesn't bother him at all. His giant mane makes him look like a lion -- Leo the Lion -- which spawned his nickname, Big Cat.

What people like about him is that he doesn't behave like a star. The Jets have too many players who think they're better than they are; he isn't one of them.

"He's a young guy that listens," Forte said. "He's not opposed to constructive criticism, which is really good in a young guy. When you're a young guy, you kind of feel like you can't do anything wrong. That's not being coachable. That's a mistake. A lot of guys make that mistake, but he hasn't."Not only that, but he's super talented. As long as he continues on this path and doesn't get complacent, I think he can be -- if not the best -- one of the best defensive linemen in the league."

 

After a solid rookie year, Williams made it a priority to improve his pass-rushing. He accomplished that, raising his sack total from three to seven (and counting). Coach Todd Bowles said the biggest improvement is his ability to read blocking schemes, which has helped his play against the run.Williams is a weapon because of his versatility. He has played 64 percent of his snaps at tackle/nose tackle (three sacks), 36 percent at defensive end (four sacks), per ESPN Stats. He's quicker than most interior linemen, stronger than most defensive ends.He's a 6-foot-5, 302-pound cornerstone for a franchise short on blue-chip talent. If the NFL had an expansion draft and each team was allowed to protect only one player, the Jets' choice would be Williams.

"My goal is to be one of the best," he said, not in a bragging kind of way. "I just want to be remembered."

>       http://www.espn.com/blog/new-york-jets/post/_/id/65668/jets-leo-big-cat-williams-just-cant-wait-to-be-king-of-defensive-linemen

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Some hardcore Leo orgy going on over here. I'll join in when he starts turning a few games around. For now, he's not a PB snub. 

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2017 Pro Bowl: Leonard Williams Named First Alternate

Posted 16 hours ago

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Sheldon Richardson Also Named a Fifth Alternate for the AFC

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While the Jets didn’t have any players named to the Pro Bowl on Tuesday, DL Leonard Williamsicon-article-link.gif figures to stand a decent chance of gaining an invite to play for the AFC when they match up with the NFC on Jan. 29 at the Orlando Citrus Bowl.

Williams was named a first alternate tonight. The 6’5”, 302-pounder, in his second season from USC, leads the Jets with 7.0 sacks, 23 QB hurries and 2 forced fumbles. His 11 TFL ties for the team lead and he also ranks second on the club with 78 tackles. He has become one of the most stout interior players in football as the Green & White have held opponents to 91 or fewer yards on the ground in nine of 14 contests.  Selected No. 6 overall by GM Mike Maccagnan in the 2015 draft, Williams is just 22 and has already appeared in 30 contests for New York’s AFC representative.
 


Fellow defensive lineman Sheldon Richardsonicon-article-link.gif was named a fifth alternate for the AFC. Richardson, a Pro Bowler in 2014 after recording a team-high 8.0 sacks along with 84 tackles, has played in 13 games this season while being credited with 57 tackles and 1.5 sacks in addition to 14 QB hurries. He is a versatile performer who has been asked to play OLB times.

 

>     http://www.newyorkjets.com/news/article-7/2017-Pro-Bowl-Leonard-Williams-Named-First-Alternate/1536cd50-402f-4123-95f6-86979cb29288     

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Wait, even a 5th alternate is too damn high for the "Where da hoez at" idot. 

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The Jets will need a new right tackle in 2017, because Breno Giacomini is a goner. That much we know already.But what remains unclear is this: Can Brandon Shell take over at right tackle for this team next season?

Shell, a rookie, had a promising starting debut in Saturday's loss to the Dolphins. According to Pro Football Focus, he allowed zero quarterback pressures on 55 pass blocking snaps.Not bad for a guy who had played 10 offensive snaps all season, plus just 20 on special teams. He was supposed to sit, watch, and learn this year. But a season-ending back injury to Giacomini, and then a hamstring injury to Brent Qvale, resulted in Shell starting against Miami. And he did all right in his first career NFL start. 

Jets offensive coordinator Chan Gailey agreed with the assessment that Shell played well against the Dolphins, but he noted that the Jets gave Shell blocking help, because he was a green player blocking Cameron Wake."He played good," Gailey said of Shell. "He was physical. We tried to make sure he had some help over there for him, knowing that they would try to come after him, and he was on Cameron Wake. That's two bad things. You try to make sure that you help out over there as much as you possibly can for the guy."

Shell has long been more comfortable at right tackle, dating back to his high school and college days. 

The Jets drafted him in Round 5 this year, out of South Carolina. But they actually used a fourth-round pick on him, because they traded away their Round 4 pick in 2017, in order to move into Round 5 and get him.After Saturday's game, Shell felt encouraged by his performance. It appeared, at first glance, as though he missed a blocking assignment in the first quarter, when Wake ran free and strip-sacked Bryce Petty.But Shell said he did what he was supposed to do on the play -- block down to the inside of the line. Gailey said Shell was speaking the truth. Gailey declined to say who screwed up on the play, and let Wake run free toward Petty. 

Shell will need to be productive for more than just one start, in order for the Jets to trust him as their right tackle in 2017. But this was an auspicious beginning.Giacomini has struggled over the past two seasons. This season, he dealt with a lingering back injury that finally caught up to him. He turns 32 next September. The Jets would create $4.5 million in salary cap space (with just $625,000 in dead money attached) by cutting him. Next year is the final season of his contract. 

All that adds up to Giacomini being released after this season. Is Shell ready to step in and take over? 

>       http://www.nj.com/jets/index.ssf/2016/12/can_brandon_shell_be_jets_right_tackle_in_2017.html#incart_river_index

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Jets RT Breno Giacomini slated for back surgery, future in doubt

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- Right tackle Breno Giacomini, who played only five games due to back troubles, will have surgery Wednesday to repair a herniated disc. He said the recovery time is four months, which means he will miss about one month of the offseason program.

Giacomini said the surgery will involve "shaving down" the disc. He was injured last June while training, and he began the season on the physically-unable-to-perform list. He returned to the starting lineup, but the disc issue flared up, and he was placed on injured reserve.

"It should help," he said of the surgery. "I'll have a full offseason. I'll get into training camp and try to make the team again. Hopefully, it helps me get back on the field and get back stronger."Giacomini, 31, is heading into the final year of his contract. With a cap charge of $5.1 million, he could become a cap casualty. He's an easy cut because they'd save nearly the entire amount ($4.5 million) by releasing him.

Rookie Brandon Shell started the final three games at right tackle and received positive reviews from the coaching staff. He's a candidate to replace Giacomini.

>          http://www.espn.com/blog/new-york-jets/post/_/id/66129/jets-rt-breno-giacomini-slated-for-back-surgery-future-in-doubt

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With Shell at RT, the Jets are really just a LT away from having a really solid line... The FA market might be a little thin, but Cam Robinson might be in play with the 6th pick... It might be a little bit of a reach but man... Having a solid OL would make this team much better... Maybe our QBs would stay standing long enough to make a few more plays, and an improved running game can only help. 

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Josh Martin Out to Prove the Doubters Wrong

Posted 20 hours ago

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Martin Believes Jets Set the Foundation on Special Teams, Would Like to Return

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Josh Martinicon-article-link.gif has bounced around quite a bit in his NFL career, so he began his first full season with the Jets on a mission. The 25-year-old Martin, a backup linebacker who led the Jets with 14 special teams stops in 2016, carried a chip on his shoulder and he became a standout performer along the way.“I feel like I had something to prove. I still feel like I have something to prove,” he said. “When you come off a year like I had my third year, where you weren’t really with the team for an extended period of time, there’s always people that doubt you. You can feel it in the building. They don’t quite know what I’m capable of. Show them what I’m about, that’s kind of how I approached this season.”

In November of 2015, the Jets signed Martin off the Indianapolis practice squad. Starting out as an undrafted free agent with Kansas City in 2013, Martin played two seasons with the Chiefs and then started the 2015 campaign with the Buccaneers. After he was waived/injured by the Bucs, Martin joined the Colts’ practice squad. And during that short time in America’s Heartland, Martin became acquainted with current Jets special teams coordinator Brant Boyer, who was serving as a special teams assistant for Indy.“I have a good relationship with Brant and I feel like I’m on his good side,” Martin said. “He appreciates the work that I do and that’s the goal. That’s what you want coaches to say about you. Give them some evidence that you can prove them right.”
 

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In the salary cap era, there are few core special teams performers and units are constantly changing. After Martin became a valuable contributor in KC with 13 special teams tackles for the Chiefs in 2013-14, Martin once again flourished with the Jets.“It’s different today. It’s one of those things where you toss younger guys out there. I was one of those younger guys out there,” he said. “And now that I have more experience, I’m more comfortable running down on kickoff, understanding if I’m going to get blindsided, where it’s going to come from. I play a little faster and a little more aggressive.”

While the Jets’ units overall didn’t establish the consistency they would have liked in Boyer’s first year, they ended the season on a high note with the “kick six” as rookie S Doug Middletonicon-article-link.gif recovered Nick Folkicon-article-link.gif’s fourth-quarter kickoff in a 30-13 win over the Bills in Week 17.“Earlier on in the season, we had success with some returns. We didn’t have the best year, we gave up a lot of points special-teams wise,” Martin said. “That’s disappointing, but he definitely set the foundation of the scheme. I think it showed throughout the year how important special teams is.”

In the lead up to a game with the Cheaters, New England head coach Bill Belichick called Martin one of the top players in the league covering kickoffs. After racking up 17 sacks at Columbia during his collegiate days, Martin has certainly made his mark. With an expiring contract, he would like to return for a second season in green and white.“I’ve never been in this situation before. I’m going to travel a little bit and take some time off the next few weeks,” he said. “Then I’ll get back to work and hopefully we can reach an agreement. I like it here. I like the foundation we’ve been able to establish. I want to lead that base now.”

 

>        http://www.newyorkjets.com/news/article-7/Josh-Martin-Out-to-Prove-the-Doubters-Wrong/2eee47a8-3687-409f-8874-1d6cb6079644

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An inside look at how the Jets negotiated an early Winters

Still seven weeks away from free agency, the New York Jets made a pre-emptive strike by locking up their No. 1 priority, guard Brian Winters, who signed a four-year contract extension on Monday.

The knee-jerk reaction : Wow, the Jets mean business. They're ticked off by the 5-11 season, and they can't wait to start fixing things.There might be some of that sentiment at One Jets Drive, but there were other factors in play. For one, the two sides actually began negotiating late last season -- before Winters suffered a rotator cuff tear in Week 15.

Secondly, this was a business opportunity for the Jets. And for Winters.

If healthy, Winters would have been one of the most coveted guards on the free-agent market, but he underwent rotator cuff surgery at the end of the season. Even though he should be fine for the 2017 season, he evidently felt that the injury would have affected his value on the open market.That factored into his decision to sign in January. The Jets pounced on the early-bird special, probably saving some money.

The deal averages about $7 million per year, according to sources. The amount of fully guaranteed money wasn't immediately available -- that's the most important detail when evaluating a contract -- but it's thought to be about $12 million. A year ago, Texans guard Jeff Allen received a $12 million guarantee on a four-year, $28 million contract. Winters gets a lot of money for a solid, if not Pro Bowl-level guard, but it falls in line with the market set last year by Allen and J.R. Sweezy (five years, $32.5 million). The two sides worked off those contracts in the negotiations.

From the Jets' perspective, the deal carries risk. They've committed a boatload of money to a player only one month removed from a significant shoulder operation -- a player who had major knee surgery in 2014 and never has started for a full season. But they felt it was a worthwhile gamble because he's still young (he'll be 26 in July), he played well last season before the injury and he still hasn't reached his ceiling. They know the player and they know the injury, and they felt comfortable with the situation. If they had lost him in free agency, it would've cost at least $8 million per year to replace him with a top guard, i.e., Kevin Zeitler (Bengals) or T.J. Lang (Packers).

Winters, too, took a chance because he surrendered the opportunity to become an unrestricted free agent. Evidently, he didn't think he'd have much bargaining power because of the injury, so he took what he could get while the getting was good. The best deals usually involve risk from both sides.

From a personnel standpoint, this means two-fifths of the offensive line is secure -- right and left guard (James Carpenter). Now all the Jets have to do is figure out what to do with center Nick Mangold and both tackle spots. They have a lot of work left, but they cleared a big item off the to-do list by securing Winters.

>    http://www.espn.com/blog/new-york-jets/post/_/id/66406/an-inside-look-at-how-the-jets-negotiated-an-early-winters

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O-Line Had Its Share of Bumps & Bruises

Posted 20 hours ago

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Despite Fielding 11 Different Starters, Unit Held Together as Young Players Got Experience

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Last Season Review


In 2008, '09 and '12, the same five Jets offensive linemen started all 16 regular-season games. This past season was nothing like those seasons. As has been well documented, only one of the projected '16 starters, LG James Carpenter, started all 16 games. LT Ryan Clady (who arrived after D'Brickashaw Ferguson's offseason retirement) went on Injured Reserve after Game 9, followed by C Nick Mangold, RT Breno Giacomini and RG Brian Winters.As a result, 11 different players got at least two starts on the O-line, and 10 different lineups were used, with no one lineup working together for more than three games.

"You think back to 2015 and we had a lot of success and we were fortunate," GM Mike Maccagnan said recently about his entire roster. "This season, it was like every week you turned around and somebody else was getting injured."Yet despite the almost weekly turnover, the line actually held up fairly well. The Jets were 12th in the NFL in rush yards/game and 14th in rush yards/attempt as Matt Forté early and Bilal Powell late often found some nice holes. In the pass game, the line was 21st in sacks/pass attempt and tied for 15th in total sacks allowed. And the team's 20 offensive holding penalties, 15 against O-linemen, were sixth-fewest in the league.

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Looking Ahead


C Nick Mangold has said he plans to return from his foot injury that cost him eight games in all, wants to return to the Jets, and thinks he can still play at his Pro Bowl level — "I have no qualms about that." Head coach Todd Bowles concurred: "If he's healthy, yes."A healthy Mangold flanked by Carpenter and Winters — who signed a contract extension after the final game vs. Buffalo — makes for a solid interior of the line.

As head coach Todd Bowles said about the injuries, "We have to see how bad the injuries are going forward and how nagging they are. But the big thing is the young guys had a chance to play and establish themselves, so, there is hope there." One of those young guys was rookie Brandon Shell, who was throw into the fray with RT starts over the last three games, acquitted himself well, and Bowles said, "I'm encouraged by him going forward."Shell could compete with Breno Giacomini, another health question who, before undergoing surgery for a herniated disc in his back shortly after the season, told reporters, "I'll be back." Brent Qvale is another who drew experience with five starts, three at RT.

The big question is left tackle. Clady, who started the first eight games before a shoulder injury sent him to IR, is under contract. Ben Ijalana, who started the last eight games at LT after getting five starts at RT, is the line's only unrestricted free agent, while Johnson, who filled in ably for Mangold except for a few mistimed snaps, is the only restricted FA.

>     http://www.newyorkjets.com/news/article-randylangefb/O-Line-Had-Its-Share-of-Bumps--Bruises/a26d4eda-31b6-4d07-aac0-6bfccb614e76

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The New York Jets eventually face a decision on the future of left tackle Ryan Clady, but the team bought itself sometime with a contract reworking that actually took place in December, according to a source.

Clady, who started eight games for the team in 2016, was scheduled to have a $2.5 million roster bonus due in mid-February, which would have put the clock on team management to decide whether or not to move on from the former All-Pro lineman, who was previously due a $7.5 million base salary for 2017, none of which was guaranteed.Under the new terms, Clady is no longer due a roster bonus, with that $2.5 million instead being folded into his base salary, bringing that total to $10 million for 2017, with an additional $1 million available in incentives. None of that money is guaranteed until Week 1 of the regular season, at which point base salaries for all vested veterans become guaranteed.

Clady’s season was cut short because of a rotator cuff injury, as injuries have limited him to a total of just 27 of 64 total games since the start of the 2013 season. While Clady would still seem like a long shot to be retained for 2017 with a $10 million base salary, the Jets have afforded themselves more time to evaluate his health and performance.Ben Ijalana started the final eight games at left tackle for the Jets, but he will be an unrestricted free agent. He'd be the only in-house candidate to assume left-tackle duties if the Jets move on from Clady.

>    http://www.espn.com/blog/new-york-jets/post/_/id/66567/source-jets-re-work-ryan-cladys-contract-to-buy-time

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LB Got Younger, Faster Behind David Harris

Posted 12 minutes ago

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Old Veteran, Youthful Contributors Lee, Jenkins & Mauldin Should Be Jets' 'Backer Anchors in '17

 

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Last Season Review


GM Mike Maccagnan and HC Todd Bowles continued their work to infuse the LB corps, led by longtime Jet David Harris, with talented youth. Darron Lee was drafted in the first round (20th overall) out of Ohio State and Jordan Jenkins arrived in Round 3 (83rd overall) out of Georgia.Lee was thrown into the fire right away — he played in all games except three he missed due to injury, started eight games, logged 640 defensive snaps, and notched 76 tackles, including 10 for loss/no gain and two half-sacks. Jenkins sat out the first two games with injury, then broke in more slowly, yet still finished the season with 10 starts and 513 snaps. And he came on strong in the season's final quarter with 4.0 of his 6.0 tackles for loss/no gain, all of his 2.5 sacks, and one of only three team strip-sacks all year, which he also recovered, in the season finale vs. Buffalo.

Harris continued his outstanding 10-year Jets career with a team-leading 113 tackles — his ninth time leading the Green & White with 100-plus tackles. He once again logged major minutes in starting 15 games (he missed one game due to injury, which snapped his 121-game starts streak) and playing 899 defensive snaps and 985 including special teams, the latter the top number on defense.Second-year OLB Lorenzo Mauldin showed improvement through the first 11 games, getting 2.5 sacks and posting 13 QB hits, second-most on the D behind Leonard Williams' 19, not to mention scoring his first pro interception on a late deflection in the win at Cleveland. But he could not make it back from a severe ankle injury for the last five games.

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Two 'backers did most of their work as valued contributors to the special teams. Josh Martin led all Jets with his 342 ST plays and not coincidentally led the team with 14 tackles in kick coverage. Bruce Carteradded 215 ST reps, fourth on the team and second behind Martin among front-seven players. Freddie Bishop began the season on the practice squad and finished it with an extended look, including two starts, in the last quarter of the schedule.Physical issues hit the 'backers as they did other positions on the team. Erin Henderson, who began the year starting on the inside alongside Harris, went to the Non-Football Injury/Illness list after Game 6. Mike Catapano played in 11 games, started three, but finished on IR. So did Julian Stanford, who also had three starts on the inside.

Looking Ahead


Harris moved into No. 2 on the Jets' all-time tackles list and at 1,251 needs a mere 221 to pass No. 1 Kyle Clifton. Will he pursue it? "I'm under contract for another year, so we'll see," he said after the Bills finale. Lee and Jenkins will be back after getting that all-important offseason after their rookie years under their belts, as will Mauldin. Henderson could also return.

It will be interesting to see which among their other LBs on last year's roster the Jets seek to re-sign. Both Martin and Carter, the special teams mainstays, can be unrestricted free agents. So is Corey Lemonier, who played just one game but flashed as a rusher vs. the Bills. Catapano, Stanford and Randell Johnson, who also played in one game late in the year, can become restricted FAs. Frank Beltre, a teammate of Bishop's on the 2014 Grey Cup-champion Calgary Stampeders, was signed to a reserve/future contract.

>      http://www.newyorkjets.com/news/article-randylangefb/LB-Got-Younger-Faster-Behind-David-Harris/3f8d87e6-f553-4359-bbf0-e31b177006df

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1 minute ago, BurnleyJet said:

Well the transformation went well..

I remember Revis in his rookie season struggling. We'll know more this year.

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Just now, UnitedWhofans said:

I remember Revis in his rookie season struggling. We'll know more this year.

Kool Story Bro..

  • Upvote 1

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2017 NFL Free Agency: 5 offensive line targets for the Jets

By: Tyler Calvaruso | 11 hours ago

The Jets may have been able to make the best of what was essentially a patchwork offensive line in 2016 due to injuries, but there are upgrades that could be made on various parts of the line.While the Jets seem content with the recently locked up Brian Winters and James Carpenter playing the two guard spots, Ryan Clady and Breno Giacomini have dealt with injury problems and are likely to be cap casualties this offseason. The same could apply to fan favorite Nick Mangold.

Expect youngsters like Wesley Johnson and Brandon Shell to get some opportunities for New York in 2017. That being said, there will still be holes to fill.here are five offensive linemen that are hitting free agency that the Jets should take a look at.Here are five offensive linemen that are hitting free agency that the Jets should take a look at.

RICKY WAGNER


With not many top-level linemen hitting the market this year, re-signing Wagner will most likely be the Ravens’ top priority this offseason.However, if he does hit free agency, he will be the best offensive lineman on the open market and will be targeted by many teams in need of a top-tier tackle.The Jets should be one of the teams in the mix for his services.

RILEY REIFF


A first-round pick by the Detroit Lions back in 2012, Reiff’s rookie deal is up.The Iowa product has displayed versatility during his time in the NFL, starting out as a left tackle before moving over to the right side.He has been a much better player at right tackle as opposed to left tackle, but his versatility gives him an extra bargaining chip when it comes down to contract negotiations.Due to his youth and willingness to play on both sides of the line, the Jets should be all over Reiff when the time comes.

MATT KALIL


Matt Kalil has been a disappointment so far to say the least.The former No. 3 overall pick has not played well to start his career with the Vikings, but he still has loads of potential.Kalil was drafted as high as he was for a reason and just because he hasn’t been able to put it together in Minnesota doesn’t mean he is a lost cause.All he might need is a change of scenery to get it together, and the Jets could be a potential landing spot for the former USC Trojan.

MIKE REMMERS


Remmers fought and won a position battle during training camp in 2016 and he could be in line to do the same thing in New York if he chooses to leave the Carolina Panthers.Remmers started the season as the Panthers starting left tackle and moved over to the right side when Michael Oher went down for the season with a concussion.Remmers would serve as a nice depth signing for the Jets with potentially the chance to compete for a starting job in training camp

J.C. TRETTER


With the Jets expressing a desire to go younger on both sides of the ball and Mangold getting up there in age, his days as a Jet could be coming to an end.If the team does not view Johnson as a potential long-term answer at center, expect J.C. Tretter to be a free agent target.Tretter, 25, is one of the better centers in football and whoever signs him will be getting his prime years.Mangold’s future remains up in the air and the team seems to like Johnson to replace Mangold, but Tretter could be an excellent alternative moving forward.

>     http://jetswire.usatoday.com/author/calvaruso/

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Jenkins Finished Rookie Campaign Strong

Posted Jan 26, 2017

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Jets OLB Saved His Best for Last, Wants to Improve Pass Rush for 2017

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Jordan Jenkinsicon-article-link.gif characterized his first professional season as a “big learning experience.” While he endured his share of bumps and bruises as any rookie would, he took his game to another level in the final quarter of 2016.“As I was looking back at some of the earlier games compared to when I played in the later ones, I feel like I’m a totally different player,” he said. “I’m starting to feel more comfortable out there. I’m having a little bit of the swagger back as the tough guy talking trash type of attitude that I had in college. It’s something that I’m going to have to get back into feeling and getting more comfortable.”

Jenkins’ exclamation point came against Bills in Week 17 when he strip-sacked QB EJ Manuel and recovered the ball. In the Jets’ last four games, the Georgia product registered 17 tackles, four tackles for loss/no gain, 2.5 sacks, and seven QB hits.

The 2016 third-round pick credited his homework for his improved play. Jenkins said he amped up his film study and preparation after a “bad experience” in Week 9 against the Dolphins where he felt responsible for a blown coverage that resulted in a touchdown. “I learned in the Miami game and a couple of the other games that you really have to be dialed in 100% of the time. You can’t afford not to study film during the week so you can be prepared for all the adverse situations that you might not usually see during practice. If you would’ve spent time during the week, you might’ve seen it already.


“I just really learned how to be an effective player, what it looks like and how to be a pro. I wouldn’t trade anything else that happened this year for anything in the world. The season didn’t go the way we wanted it to, but I learned a lot of things, played with a lot of great players and I’m excited for the future.”Jenkins is a part of a rookie class that is close-knit and has laid the groundwork for the future on both sides of the ball. Six of the seven 2016 draft selections all started at least one game this season (only Christian Hackenbergicon-article-link.gif didn't play) and three other rookies received the nod as well — WR Robby Andersonicon-article-link.gif, WR Jalin Marshallicon-article-link.gif and DL Lawrence Thomasicon-article-link.gif.

“That’s most definitely something we want to try and do because our rookie class has contributed all across the board and that’s something we really like about each other,” said Jenkins. “We got together and really wanted to make sure that we step up next year and expand our roles. Just to try and suck up more information and get on the field more. Be better teammates and leaders next year.”The next step for Jenkins involves two things —his pass rushing skills and completing his education. An insurance risk management major, the Hamilton, GA native will take two of his final five classes at his alma mater. 

“Most definitely in the offseason I need to work on my lateral quickness because there’s times I’m over striding or I could be a lot quicker,” Jenkins said when he and his teammates cleared out their lockers in early January. “I’m not getting my feet down. I also need to work on my upper body strength so I can press off of blockers and be more effective. I can get guys off me, but there are times where I might be struggling with a block and if I had the upper body strength needed, I could just tear off and make a play a lot quicker. That’s one of the things I’ll be focusing on this offseason.”

>       http://www.newyorkjets.com/news/article-7/Jenkins-Finished-Rookie-Campaign-Strong-/0a609c6c-96f7-4f2e-952c-cd83b1aa5bd8

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As it turns out, the Jets still likely will cut left tackle Ryan Clady next week. 

That's because Clady's latest, updated contract information does include a 2017 option clause that the Jets must exercise (or not exercise, if they cut him) by Feb. 15, next Wednesday -- the 22nd day prior to the start of the 2017 NFL year. The league year begins on March 9. 

A league source confirmed this information, which was first reported by NFL Network's Mike Garafolo.

A report late last month from ESPN's Field Yates stated the Jets no longer had the February option clause deadline for Clady, so they could wait until the end of training camp, if they wanted, to make a keep-or-cut decision on him. 

Sometimes, contract information in the NFLPA's database can change to include other details, which explains the mixup. Clady's initial contract with the Jets included the Feb. 15 option clause. Even though Clady restructured his deal Dec. 21, the clause remained, as it turns out. 

So what does the Feb. 15 option clause deadline mean?

 

Mock drafts roundup

Mock drafts roundup

Look into the crystal ball ... or something like that.

 

If the Jets exercise the option -- and they probably won't -- then Clady will receive a fully guaranteed $1 million roster bonus on the third day of the league year (March 11). Clady's base salary in 2017 would be $10 million, but none of that money is guaranteed. 

Bottom line: If the Jets are going to cut Clady -- and they probably will -- then they'll make that decision by next Wednesday, in order to owe him no money for 2017.Cutting Clady would obviously mean the Jets needing to find a new left tackle, but it would also create $9.4 million in salary cap space, with just $600,000 in dead money attached.The Jets traded for Clady last offseason to replace the retiring, remarkably durable D'Brickashaw Ferguson. But Clady was a disappointment in 2016, when he lasted just half the season before landing on injured reserve. 

Clady, who turns 31 in September, has been hampered by injuries in recent seasons. He was limited to two games in 2013 with the Broncos, because of a foot fracture. After playing a full season in 2014 and making the Pro Bowl, he didn't play in 2015, because of an ACL tear.Last season, he played in nine games (with eight starts) for the Jets before a torn rotator cuff put him on IR.In the bigger picture, the Jets need to get younger on their offensive line. Clady, entering the final year of his contract in 2017, isn't a long-term solution, even if he bucks the odds and returns next season. 

The Jets also are expected to cut right tackle Breno Giacomini, limited last year by a back injury. The move would create $4.5 million in cap space, with $625,000 in dead money attached. Giacomini turns 32 in September. He is no longer an effective player. 

 

8 Jets who should be gone in 2017

8 Jets who should be gone in 2017

Time to make some cuts.

 

When Clady went on IR last season, the Jets replaced him with Ben Ijalana, a career backup who turns 28 in August. He is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent in March.Ijalana isn't an elite left tackle, but if the Jets cut Clady and don't find a replacement in the draft or free agency, Ijalana would presumably be their left tackle again in 2017. The Jets, of course, would have to re-sign him first. 

>       http://www.nj.com/jets/index.ssf/2017/02/ryan_clady_jets_option_year_cut_left_tackle.html#incart_river_index

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Clady is done and no way is Mangold worth anything close to $9 mil at this stage of his career 

 

cut

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Free Agent T Jeff Adams Signs with Jets

Posted 20 hours ago

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Green & White Are His 6th NFL Team in 6 Seasons After He Played 4 Years at Columbia in NYC

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The Jets have signed free agent tackle Jeff Adams.

Adams (6'7", 305) will be considered a fourth-year NFL player when the new league year begins, but 2017 will be his sixth season in the league and the Jets are the sixth team he's spent time with.He began his pro career as an undrafted free agent out of Columbia with Dallas, was waived by the Cowboys in late August, then signed on with the Cincinnati and Miami practice squads in 2012 and the Titans' practice squad in '13.

Adams was acquired on waivers by Houston in early 2014 and finally got some playing time with the Texans — four games and two starts in 2014-15 combined. He began 2015 as the LG starter but injured his right knee and spent the rest of the season on Injured Reserve. He ended this past season on the Texans' practice squad.

Although he grew up in Illinois, Adams is now back in the area where he went to college, after playing four seasons for the Ivy League's Lions.

 

>     http://www.newyorkjets.com/news/article-randylangefb/Free-Agent-T-Jeff-Adams-Signs-with-Jets/209dca42-be7e-4519-9c4a-0d01d2973576

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Jets Free Agency Preview: Offensive Line

Posted 2 hours ago

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Before Free Agency Commenced, the Jets Made a Key Winter(s) Deal

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Overview


The changing of the guard has meant a guard emphasis for the Jets.GM Mike Maccagnan used his first free agency to ink James Carpentericon-article-link.gif to a four-year deal and “Carp” has been the team’s top lineman over the past two years. While Carpenter has manned the left guard spot for the last 32 games, Brian Wintersicon-article-link.gif has significantly developed and become a valuable right guard. After starting 13 games this past season, the Jets made sure their starting guards would be together for at least two more seasons as they signed Winters to a four-year extension.

“Me and him (Carpenter) always say we can be one of the best guard tandems in the NFL and I still think that,” Winters said. “That’s another reason I wanted to stay around because I have a lot of respect for him and everyone else across the line.”

Jets Free Agents


T Ben Ijalanaicon-article-link.gif (UFA): Accustomed to backing up D’Brickashaw Ferguson, things changed in a big way for Ijalana in 2016. After an illustrious 10-year career, Ferguson decided to retire in the offseason. With Breno Giacominiicon-article-link.gif battling a back injury, Ijalana started the season in a rotation at RT with Brent Qvaleicon-article-link.gif. Then the 27-year-old Ijalana flipped over to the left side when Ryan Cladyicon-article-link.gif couldn’t overcome a shoulder injury and was placed on injured reserve on Nov. 9.  Receiving the most extensive playing time of his career, Ijalana made 13 starts.

C Wesley Johnsonicon-article-link.gif (RFA): After Nick Mangoldicon-article-link.gif went down in Week 7 vs. the Ravens, Wesley Johnson became the center of attention. And he performed reasonably well for the Jets down the stretch as the team got RB Bilal Powellicon-article-link.gif on track late. The 6’5”, 297-pound Johnson started eight games for the Jets.

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The Market 


With Carpenter and Winters locked up, the Jets aren’t in need for a front-line player at guard. Teams targeting that position might a look at the likes of Kevin Zeitler (Cincinnati Bengals), T.J. Lang (Green Bay Packers) and Larry Warford (Detroit Lions).Entering February over the projected cap, the Jets will have decisions to make on Clady and Giacomini. The nagging back ailment limited Giacomini to five contests in 2016 after he started each game in 2014-15. Ricky Wagner (Baltimore Ravens), Andre Whitworth (Cincinnati Bengals), Riley Reiff (Detroit Lions), Jake Long and Matt Kalil (Minnesota Vikings) and Sebastian Vollmer (New England Patriots) all are scheduled to be on the market.

The 33-year-old Mangold, who paired up with Ferguson to be the fixtures along the Jets line from 2006-15, has expressed his desire to continue playing and would reportedly make $9.1 million this season under his current contract. The free agent crop at center includes J.C. Tretter (Green Bay Packers), Joe Hawley (Tampa Bay Buccaneers) and John Sullivan (Washington Redskins).

 

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Synopsis


Despite starting nine line combinations last season, the Jets ranked sixth in the AFC with 4.31 yards per rush. Eight different players participated in at least 20 percent of the snaps up front.“The big thing is the young guys had a chance to play and establish themselves, so, there is hope there,” said head coach Todd Bowles.

Brandon Shellicon-article-link.gif, a fifth-round pick from South Carolina, started the final three games of the season at RT and was strong in his short stint. With another offseason to develop, it’s possible the 6’6”, 324-pound Shell could become the team’s full-time RT. Johnson showed the game was not too big for him, but Mangold is a seven-time Pro Bowler and he remains a competent performer when healthy.

 

>     http://www.newyorkjets.com/news/article-7/Jets-Free-Agency-Preview-Offensive-Line/fc900aae-efe0-4fd8-b77a-654ade772c2f

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Erin Henderson was a starting inside linebacker for the first six games last season and then ... pffft!

He was gone.

Henderson, who battled alcohol problems earlier in his career, was placed on the New York Jets' non-football injury list for the remainder of the season with no explanation from the team. Because he signed a two-year, $4 million contract last offseason, his rights still belong to the Jets. A decision is looming -- two decisions, actually.The Jets must decide by Wednesday whether to exercise their option for 2017. There's no financial commitment with this decision; that doesn't occur until March 9. That is the first day of the league year, when he's due a $250,000 roster bonus.If not by Wednesday, the Jets will determine his fate by March 9. He's counting $2.75 million on the salary cap, including a non-guaranteed base salary of $2.25 million.

The Jets are shy on depth at inside linebacker, where the current starters are David Harris and Darron Lee, but Henderson's cap number is too high for a backup. He turns 31 in July, and they're probably looking to get younger. Plus, there's the off-the-field baggage. Clearly, Henderson was dealing with a personal issue -- it wasn't injury-related, the team has said -- and only the Jets know whether he can be trusted.Henderson hasn't returned multiple calls and messages seeking comment. There was no activity on his Twitter account from last October, around the time he left the team, until January. In January, he responded to a follower's question about what happened, saying, "Long story. I'll tell you guys about 1 day. But all is well on my end."

 

The Jets gave Henderson a shot in 2015, signing him to a minimum deal after he sat out the entire 2014 season following his release from the Vikings. Minnesota gave up on him after two DUI arrests, which resulted in a four-game league suspension. The Jets liked what they saw and signed him again.

Settling into a starting position last preseason, Henderson emerged as a vocal leader on defense. Then, suddenly, he was gone, placed on the nebulous NFI list.

General manager Mike Maccagnan said during the season that Henderson was "taking some time right now to deal with a few things, but we’ll address that at the end of the season and where we decide to go with that."

That time is now.

>      http://www.espn.com/blog/new-york-jets/post/_/id/66917/time-approaching-for-jets-to-make-decision-on-mystery-linebacker

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For a decade, the New York Jets were spoiled.

They had D'Brickashaw Ferguson at left tackle, and he never missed a practice, let alone a game. Week after week, season after season, they never had to worry about that position.

Now ?

Big-time worries.

Ryan Clady's release, though not unexpected, leaves the Jets with no experienced left tackles on the roster. It's a hole the size of the entrance to the Lincoln Tunnel, and it won't be easy to fill. The free-agent class is thin and so is the draft. This is a concern because left tackle is a position of premium importance :

 

Possible replacements :

 

  • Ben Ijalana, Jets: They're interested in re-signing him before he hits the open market. That would be a smart move. Ijalana, who replaced Clady (rotator cuff) midway through the 2016 season, has value because he's only 27 and can play both tackle positions. Would he be the long-term answer? Maybe, maybe not, but he'd be a solid, hold-the-fort guy.

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  • Kelvin Beachum, free agent: On Wednesday, the Jaguars declined an option, making him a free agent. You might recall the Jets showed interest in Beachum last offseason. He played 965 snaps at left tackle in 2016, per ESPN Stats & Information. He turns 28 in June.

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  • Russell Okung, Broncos: With an $11.7 million cap charge, Okung, 29, could be a casualty. He played 1,004 snaps, but he wasn't the old Okung.

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  • Ryan Ramczyk, Wisconsin: He's considered by many to be the best left tackle in the draft. He'd be a reach at No. 6, the Jets' draft position, but he could be an option in a trade-down scenario.

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  • Andrew Whitworth, Bengals: He's widely regarded as the best of the free agents, but buyer beware: He's 35 years old.

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  • Clady : Teams won't be breaking down the 30-year-old's door with offers, so there's a chance the Jets could re-sign him at a lower price. He was due to make $11 million before the Jets declined his option.

 

>   http://www.espn.com/blog/new-york-jets/post/_/id/66968/with-ryan-clady-gone-jets-search-for-another-brick-in-the-wall

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Darron Lee Makes NFL.com's All-Rookie Team

Posted 20 hours ago

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NFL.com’s Gil Brandt Believes Jets ‘Backer Could Be a “Future Star”

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Darron Leeicon-article-link.gif had a good start to this NFL career and big things could be on the horizon. Legendary NFL personnel man Gil Brandt named Lee to his All-Rookie Team, stating that the 22-year-old ILB has what it takes to become one of the league’s elite players.“Lee is a linebacker who thrives in a game built on speed. He has a chance to be a future star,” Brandt said. “He finished with 73 tackles — that's a lot of tackles for someone who started just nine times (out of 13 games).”

Lee, selected No. 20 overall out of Ohio State last April, had modest expectations when starting his NFL trek.“I definitely wanted to ease into a starting role. That was my goal, to be able to start at some point in the season, whether it be early or later on,” he said at the end of his first campaign. “I just wanted to get to that starting role and at that point contribute, make some tackles and have an impact to help the team. I was starting to get to that and then the Arizona game and it was a roadblock.”


An ankle injury suffered against the Cardinals in Week 6 forced Lee to miss three games. The 6’1”, 232-pounder, who was leading the club in tackles at the time of his sprain, returned to action against the Rams in Week 10 and then started the team’s final six games.“At least I know I can belong and I can play,” said Lee, who finished with a sack along with three passes defended. “Now it’s about closing that gap from being so close to making that big play to making that big play.”

Following Todd Bowles’ initial plan, Lee came in an as the nickel ‘backer and became a three-down player. He gave the Jets an infusion of speed and pursued well while showing progress in coverage. Lee says he can get better at everything and he’s anxious to become the game-changer he was with the Buckeyes.“Taking the whole film to another level and taking cues to another level, so I put myself in a better position to make that big play,” he said. “And I’d say that’s the next big part is making that big play.”

In 2014-15, Lee combined for 27.5 tackles for loss and 12.0 sacks at Ohio State. He has high expectations for himself and doesn’t plan on slowing down.“I haven’t arrived in any shape or form.”

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>    http://www.newyorkjets.com/news/article-7/Darron-Lee-Makes-NFLcoms-All-Rookie-Team/2caa08f8-742e-40ed-84c2-2b625506d9dc

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Jets Free Agency Preview: Linebackers

Posted 5 hours ago

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Four Jets Are UFAs Including a Special Teams Ace

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Overview
Mike Maccagnan wants to build the Jets through the draft and he solidified the linebacker position last April.  ILB Darron Leeicon-article-link.gif, an Ohio State product who was selected No. 20 overall, brought an infusion of speed and performed well in his first season. There were growing pains along the way, but Lee appeared in nine contests and finished fourth on the defense with 73 stops. A tremendous athlete in a league that favors speed, the heady Lee could be poised for a sophomore leap.

After selecting Lee, Maccagnan came back in the third round and nabbed Georgia OLB Jordan Jenkinsicon-article-link.gif.  Over the last quarter of the season, Jenkins found his groove while registering 17 tackles, 2.5 sacks and a forced fumble. The 6’3”, 259-pound Jenkins is stout on the edge and he brings heavy hands to the pass rush.

Across from Jenkins, second-year OLB Lorenzo Mauldinicon-article-link.gif experienced some tough luck. Maudlin, a third-round pick in Maccagnan’s first draft with the Jets, missed the final five contests with an ankle injury. His playing time increased before that and Mauldin, who finished with 2.5 sacks, had 18 QB hits.David Harrisicon-article-link.gif remained a pillar in the middle, pacing the club with 113 tackles while moving into No. 2 on the Jets' all-time tackles list.

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VIEW GALLERY | 27 Photos



Jets Free Agents


LB Bruce Cartericon-article-link.gif (UFA): In his first season with the Jets, the reserve ‘backer appeared in 13 games. Carter finished tied for fourth on the club with five special teams tackles.

OLB Mike Catapanoicon-article-link.gif (UFA): For a second consecutive season, the Princeton product went to injured reserve in December. Catapano started four times, finishing with seven defensive stops.

LB Corey Lemoniericon-article-link.gif (UFA): A third-round pick of the 49ers in 2013, Lemonier was claimed off waivers in late December and played in the Jets’ Week 17 win over the Bills.

OLB Josh Martinicon-article-link.gif (UFA): While Martin didn’t get but a few snaps on defense, he was the Jets most consistent special teams performer. Reunited with Brant Boyer, Martin led the Green & White with 14 special teams stops.

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VIEW GALLERY | 13 Photos



The Market


The Jets finished just 299h in sacks (27) last season and 16.5 came from defensive linemen. There will be some prolific pass rushers on the market including OLB Chandler Jones, a 26-year-old former Patriot who racked up 11 sacks last season for the Cardinals. Chargers OLB Melvin Ingram has collected 18.5 sacks over the past two seasons and possesses a non-stop motor. After four relatively quiet seasons to start his career, Packers OLB Nick Perry amassed 11 sacks in 2016. And while Lorenzo Alexander was best known for his special teams prowess from 2007-15, the 33-year-old is coming off a 12.5-sack campaign in Buffalo. James Harrison will turn 39 in May, but he remains a physical specimen and has amassed 15.5 sacks over the past three seasons in Pittsburgh. Limited to 10 games in 2016, Denver Broncos OLB DeMarcus Ware remains a handful when healthy.  While all of the aforementioned players predominantly line up on the outside, this is a deep inside linebacker free agent class. Dont’a Hightower (New England Patriots), Zach Brown (Buffalo Bills), Kevin Minter (Arizona Cardinals), Sio Moore (Arizona Cardinals) and Lawrence Thomasicon-article-link.gif (Pittsburgh Steelers) could all become UFA, but the Browns kept former Pats LB Jamie Collins off the market with a four-year deal.

Synopsis


A legendary competitor, Kevin Greene was hired to lead the Jets outside linebackers. In 15 seasons, the Hall of Famer registered 160 sacks and had double-digit sacks in 10 seasons.  He could be a great asset for Jenkins and Mauldin as they look to make pass-rushing jumps in their second and third pro seasons respectively. 

 


Solid as a rookie, Lee is hungry to become the playmaker he was at Ohio State. The future is bright and he couldn’t have asked for a better vet to learn from than Harris. Legendary NFL personnel man Gil Brandt, a NFL Media senior analyst, believes Lee has a chance to be a star. Lee is a building block and it will be interesting to see how the Jets continue to fill out the position around him this offseason.

 

>      http://www.newyorkjets.com/news/article-7/Jets-Free-Agency-Preview-Linebackers/c625ad53-dfcf-458e-bf75-273e8075694d

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Four New York Jets Linebackers: Context Stats Breakdown

 

By Edward Gorelik

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A fact is the confirmation or validation of an event or object. Data is raw facts that describe the characteristics of an event or object. Information is data converted into a meaningful and useful context.

 

Not a lot of people know that there’s a significant difference between the three. It’s why numbers (whether football or otherwise) can lie. But eyes lie too.

As this writer delved into football analysis, my first inclination was to go the tape. After two years of “tape grinding” I noticed the massive flaws from a factual and argumentative standpoint. Anyone can find film of a player doing the same thing well and poorly. So I began drifting into stats, starting with the context stats project that’s been posted throughout the season on this website and now am moving onto a new personal project: analytics for linebackers.

Tape scouting without logging data has two big flaws. It can’t see the macro-view patterns and it is prone to personal biases. Analytics don’t have those issues but lack nuance and some domain knowledge that tape scouting provides.

Regardless, this is going to be a story of four recent Jets linebackers told through numbers and context..

The Stats

I wanted to see what it takes to play a non-pass rushing linebacker position via only analytics. So i got all the data from 2008-2016 and began working on building models and graphs that show what is and isn’t important about becoming a great linebacker. We subconsciously value many of these same traits when evaluating tape, but due to our inability to see the macro-view we miss out on some of the information. I know for certain NFL scouts value these traits, because the players who lead in these are usually higher draft picks.

The stats hierarchy goes like this:

  1. Solo Tackle % of team
  2. Total Tackle % of team
  3. Speed Weighted (Using the Speed Score formula)
  4. Age Breakout (what age the player hit 8% of his teams total tackles)

The remaining stats you’ll see just paint a full picture of the player. So far those don’t mean much.

It all makes sense though right? A player who enters the NFL and wants to play LB should have been good at producing against weaker CFB competition, so production translates the most. Speed is important because athleticism plays a huge part in running alongside routes and catching outside runs, along with bursting into the backfield. Age explains how long it took for you to figure it all out. If it took too long, then you were just a veteran beating kids.

All graphs you’ll see below show percentile ranking of each player. That means a player who is 91st percentile in Solo Tackle % is amongst the top 9% of all LBs in the system.

David Harris: 74 inches, 243 lbs

David Harris Analytics

David Harris is the first player in this story. Harris came onto the Jets via a second round pick in 2007. Jets fans have been regularly reminded that Harris is their only productive second round pick in nearly a decade.

Harris dominates the board in the most important categories. A dominant producer at Michigan, capable of taking on RBs one on one as shown by his 88th percentile Tackle Solo %. He was also dominant all-around via his 83rd percentile Tackle %. And he’s extremely fast in raw speed and weighted speed. The only mark on his resume was an extremely late breakout. But this is where data and information have their differences.

Harris suffered an injury in his freshman year that required 3 full years to heal. Seriously. Harris came back from that horrific injury to have one of the most dominant college seasons in my records, at least contextually. Harris wasn’t able to put up the type of tackle volume others put together which may have been a sign of his ultimate ceiling as he only had 96 total tackles despite owning 14% of his teams production. Regardless, Harris passed the three most important tests and became one of the Jets cornerstones on defense for years.

Demario Davis: 74 inches, 235 lbs

Demario Davis Analytics Profile

Jets drafted Demario Davis in the third round of 2012. He was drafted to play the weakside inside linebacker along Harris who took the strong side. He was supposed to bring speed back to the defense. He sorta brought nothing else.

Demario’s Jets career was two “development” years before seeming like he was turning the corner and then immediately falling apart.

We could’ve seen this coming from his college analytics. Demario was unable to produce in college. His production was anemic. Below 27th percentile in percentage of teams solo tackles, meaning he struggled in space; and 20th percentile in tackles, so he wasn’t even near the ball most of the time. He was an average age breakout so he wasn’t a prodigy either. All he had going for him was speed.

Here’s where the difference between data and information kicks in again though. If he was such an elite athlete, why was he struggling to produce against inferior competition? He played in the SUN BELT conference. The answer to that is the reason why his Jets career was what it was. He just wasn’t good. In the NFL, playing linebacker is a bit like playing running back. Simply getting the opportunity leads to production, but only the good ones keep their jobs in the face of competition.

Nick Bellore: 73 inches, 245 lbs

Nick Bellore Analytics Profile

Weird pick right? Follow me though. Nick Bellore was a UDFA the Jets picked up in 2011. He’s built to play strong side linebacker, but he lacks straight line speed so much that in order to be good he has to play with a significantly high set of instincts, preparation, and timing. And playing in the MAC, he was able to. He understood the game immediately as a freshman and had a dominant season. That dominance continued every year of his college career.

The Jets never gave Bellore a chance to start, but should it be surprising that a player who understood the game so cerebrally was one of the best special teams players during his time here? John Idzik re-signed him at the end of his initial contract because of his special teams value. But he couldn’t overtake Demario Davis’ position because he was too slow, and Harris was an iron man at his natural position; so he never saw actual defensive snaps. In 2016 with the 49ers, he got on the field after Navarro Bowman went down.

Bellore was a young breakout and a dominant producer despite being a sub-par athlete. He’s the anti-Demario Davis. In 10 starts, he produced as well as Demario Davis did in any year of his career with 7.5 tackles per game, and it was Bellore’s first time ever starting in the NFL. Demario’s best season only had 7.25 per game.

Darron Lee: 72 inches, 232 lbs

Nick Bellore Analytics Profile

We have no idea what to expect for Darron Lee so far. We picked him in the first round of 2016 to put at the Demario Davis position of WILB.

In college however, Lee was a completely unproductive linebacker. Despite being an elite athlete, like Demario, he never put up a volume of statistics for his team. In fact, he was close to never breaking out at all. Had someone else taken just one of his tackles in his 2015 season, neither of Darron Lee’s seasons would’ve had 8% of his teams tackles, meaning no breakout at all.

It’s crazy to think that the Jets drafted someone who never produced in college in the first round. But again, this is where information and data separates. Ohio State was one of the most stacked teams in college. Darron Lee was moved around the defense and wasn’t even on the field all the time. Does that affect his projection? or is it signs of him not being NFL starter caliber? Do you believe the coaches at Ohio State didn’t believe Lee was good enough to have a solid role? or was he so good that he could do anything?

I like to project young players by finding their closest analytics comparison. Darron Lee doesn’t have a clean comparison, there hasn’t been a LB at his size/weight that has his speed. However, there is one that’s close; and he may be a glimpse into Lee’s future.

That’s 72 inches, 226 pounder, former Seahawk and current Raider: Malcolm Smith.

Malcolm Smith Analytics Profile

The Point Is

All i’ve given you is some data. What information there is to get out of this is up for debate. You could’ve predicted what these players may have done based only off these numbers, a few minutes of watching their games, and looking up their history. Three of these linebackers had plenty of clues to their story entirely found through an intelligently contextualized look at their collegiate careers and athleticism.

But the fourth has a lot of variables.

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