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'Very optimistic' OL Coach Rick Dennison feels good about the OL

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Why Sam Darnold protectors are Jets’ biggest question mark

September 7, 2018 

 

The Jets’ starting offensive line did not play one snap together this preseason. The unit’s members barely practiced together. Now, they face Ezekiel Ansah and the Lions on Monday night.

The biggest question mark facing the Jets offense on Monday may not be their 21-year-old starting quarterback, but the unit blocking for him.

Injuries in training camp prevented the starters from working together. Left tackle Kelvin Beachum did not play a snap in the preseason and barely practiced in training camp after suffering a sprained foot. Right guard Brian Winters had back tightness that kept him out of one preseason game and cost him a week of training camp.

The Jets linemen and the coaches say that the group has had time to jell and they are not worried about any confusion on Monday night.

“We’ve been around each other quite a bit during this whole process,” Beachum said. “So, we can’t get into this excuse making that people on the outside are trying to bring into the locker room right now. For us, we’ve got to go out and perform. We’re professionals. Every one of us across the offensive line has played games in the National Football League. When our number is called upon, we know we’ve got to execute and perform.”

The injuries to their starters made the Jets offensive line look particularly vulnerable in the preseason games. It gives Jets fans reason to worry about the season and if Sam Darnold will have time to operate. But the Jets feel confident that with Beahcum and Winters back in the lineup, they will be fine.

“I’m very optimistic,” offensive line coach Rick Dennison said. “I think they’ve done a good job. They’ve worked hard. Obviously, it’s the start of the regular season. There’s a little bit of unknown, but I feel good about their efforts. I feel good about the guys.”

With Darnold at quarterback, there will be more focus on the offensive line and how it is doing protecting him. It is reasonable to expect the rookie quarterback to need an extra tick to make a throw than a veteran would. The offensive line is going to have to hold its blocks a little longer, but the players are not thinking like that.

“You can’t get into that ebb and flow type of game where you need to change your game because somebody else is in the game,” Beachum said. “As offensive linemen, we have to stay steady. We have to be consistent. When the play is called and when our number is called, we have to find a way to execute.”

Beachum could face the toughest challenge of all the linemen against the Lions. Ansah, who had 12 sacks last year, has been lining up on the left side of the offense, so Beachum could get a heavy dose of him. New Lions coach Matt Patricia surely has some tricks planned that he did not show in the preseason, and that might mean moving Ansah around.

“Anytime you get a premier pass rusher it’s going to be a problem,” Jets coach Todd Bowles said. “He’s long, he’s strong, he’s quick, he’s athletic. Obviously, we have our work cut out for us there.”

Beachum knows what awaits him with Ansah.

“He’s a very disruptive pass rusher,” Beachum said. “I would say one of the best in the league. The NFC North presents a number of different animals on the edge. He’s one of those different animals in the NFC North. I’m excited to play him again. I know it’s going to be a great test to start the year.”

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Well I’m all choked up that someone out there believes our offensive line will be fine because I don’t. Then there Beachum chiming in - a guy that I don’t think has played 1 snap this preseason. Hmmmmm

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I'm not in love with our O-Line (far from it) but I do not see a catastrophic type of category 5 disaster in which is waiting to happen (due to seeing 5 more than capable NFL starters). 

LT: Kelvin Beachum when healthy (which he currently is) is a very, very good NFL starting LT who graded out as a 69.3 (2017) in comparison to Ryan Clady the year before (2016) with a grade of 51.2. And is now heading into his second season (as a Jet) and has previously protected the blindside of Ben Roethlisberger as a Pittsburgh Steeler (2014 was rated as the 5th best LT with a 97.5 grade in pass blocking efficiency and 3rd in pass blocking efficiency, behind only Joe Thomas and Andrew Whitworth) and still only 29 years of age.

LG: James Carpenter is a former 1st round draft pick out of Alabama and one who's build like an animal at 6'5 321 lbs and as a starting NFL LG he's got 93 games of experience under his belt consisting of 87 career NFL starts. Back in only 2013 played in all 16 games and started 10 games @ LG for the eventual SB champion Seattle Seahawks and just the following seaon (2014) started 13 games for the eventual NFC Champions and SB losing Seattle Seahawks; and has since started all 48 games since becoming a Jet (2015). Still only 29 years of age. 

C: Spencer Long may not be a Pro Bowl/All-Pro caliber Center but he's more than capable of solid play as a former 3rd round draft pick (2014) who since played in 40 games with 31 career starts and more importantly is an upgrade over Wesley Johnson who did rank 32nd (deal last) amongst all starting Center's last year (2017). You've gotta considered the Center position as being much improved with one of our bigger FA additions (Spencer Long). 

RG: Brian Winters is another big hog @ 6'4 320 lbs and a pretty underrated 5th year starter and former 3rd round draft pick who's now got 55 career starts under his belt and still young at only 27 years of age. 

RT: Brandon Shell (who's the great nephew of HOF Offensive Tackle legend in Art Shell) is absolutely massive himself @ 6'5 325 lbs and as only a 2nd year player (out of the SEC of South Carolina) started 12 games for us last year. And showed a lot of promise while doing so. Could develop into our next Damien Woody @ RT (who was very underrated for us). 

I do hope to see Mike Maccagnan attack our Offensive-Line during Free Agency and through the draft both early and often but contrary to popular belief our O-Line could be on the verge of being much improved upon last year and a specific unit in which I'm looking forward to watching and how it progresses throughout the course of our 2018 season. 

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18 minutes ago, johnnysd said:

NY Jets 45 Detroit 9.....Just saying....

45-39 Jets 

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A long time NFL gm said never listen to your oline coach when it comes to personnel because they always feel they can coach guys up to be good or good enough.  Now it seems to me that zone blocking helps alleviate pressure on oline one on one but a negative of zone block ig is if you have one miscommunication on the oline someone is coming in unhindered to kill your qb.

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32 minutes ago, The Crusher said:

45-39 Jets 

Lol, if this Jets team after drafting defense for what seems like FOREVER, then signing a CB to a 72 million $ contract gives up 39 points, fire Bowles Tuesday morning.  

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40 minutes ago, Defense Wins Championships said:

I'm not in love with our O-Line (far from it) but I do not see a catastrophic type of category 5 disaster in which is waiting to happen (due to seeing 5 more than capable NFL starters). 

LT: Kelvin Beachum when healthy (which he currently is) is a very, very good NFL starting LT who graded out as a 69.3 (2017) in comparison to Ryan Clady the year before (2016) with a grade of 51.2. And is now heading into his second season (as a Jet) and has previously protected the blindside of Ben Roethlisberger as a Pittsburgh Steeler (2014 was rated as the 5th best LT with a 97.5 grade in pass blocking efficiency and 3rd in pass blocking efficiency, behind only Joe Thomas and Andrew Whitworth) and still only 29 years of age.

LG: James Carpenter is a former 1st round draft pick out of Alabama and one who's build like an animal at 6'5 321 lbs and as a starting NFL LG he's got 93 games of experience under his belt consisting of 87 career NFL starts. Back in only 2013 played in all 16 games and started 10 games @ LG for the eventual SB champion Seattle Seahawks and just the following seaon (2014) started 13 games for the eventual NFC Champions and SB losing Seattle Seahawks; and has since started all 48 games since becoming a Jet (2015). Still only 29 years of age. 

C: Spencer Long may not be a Pro Bowl/All-Pro caliber Center but he's more than capable of solid play as a former 3rd round draft pick (2014) who since played in 40 games with 31 career starts and more importantly is an upgrade over Wesley Johnson who did rank 32nd (deal last) amongst all starting Center's last year (2017). You've gotta considered the Center position as being much improved with one of our bigger FA additions (Spencer Long). 

RG: Brian Winters is another big hog @ 6'4 320 lbs and a pretty underrated 5th year starter and former 3rd round draft pick who's now got 55 career starts under his belt and still young at only 27 years of age. 

RT: Brandon Shell (who's the great nephew of HOF Offensive Tackle legend in Art Shell) is absolutely massive himself @ 6'5 325 lbs and as only a 2nd year player (out of the SEC of South Carolina) started 12 games for us last year. And showed a lot of promise while doing so. Could develop into our next Damien Woody @ RT (who was very underrated for us). 

I do hope to see Mike Maccagnan attack our Offensive-Line during Free Agency and through the draft both early and often but contrary to popular belief our O-Line could be on the verge of being much improved upon last year and a specific unit in which I'm looking forward to watching and how it progresses throughout the course of our 2018 season. 

Yes. These are all of the players on our offensive line.

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33 minutes ago, Beerfish said:

A long time NFL gm said never listen to your oline coach when it comes to personnel because they always feel they can coach guys up to be good or good enough.  Now it seems to me that zone blocking helps alleviate pressure on oline one on one but a negative of zone block ig is if you have one miscommunication on the oline someone is coming in unhindered to kill your qb.

But Darnold is like an AI robot who can scan the field, go through his progressions in 2.5 seconds & deliver a laser after evading the open pass rusher.

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Misleading title but whatever

Let me clarify........the title of the thread leads you to believe the article would have more input from the coach than a 1 or 2 liner. 

 

Beechum had more to say in the article than the coach.

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27 minutes ago, Jetster said:

Lol, if this Jets team after drafting defense for what seems like FOREVER, then signing a CB to a 72 million $ contract gives up 39 points, fire Bowles Tuesday morning.  

Over drafting defense and yes

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The Jets will set the run up with the pass.  The OL will be ok if no one gets hurt.  If someone gets hurt we are hosed.  

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Jeez. I can't wait for Monday night. We finally get to talk about a REAL GAME. We'll actually have 3 of them in 11 days. Not that this constant analyzation of the OL, pass rush, safeties and WR's is wearing me out or anything...

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6 hours ago, jetrider said:

“I’m very optimistic,” offensive line coach Rick Dennison said. “I think they’ve done a good job. They’ve worked hard. Obviously, it’s the start of the regular season. There’s a little bit of unknown, but I feel good about their efforts. I feel good about the guys.”

If it’s my job to coach up the OL, and this it what I say.... it means my squad is going to struggle. 

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My only concern is the health of these guys.  I'm convinced that they'll be above average if they're all healthy enough to play unhindered (unlike Winters last year playing at about 70%).  But that really is a big IF because 3 key guys ALL have recent or repeat injury concerns (Beachum, Long and Winters). But again, I truly think this will be a slightly above average line if they can all play together most of the season with minimal missed games.

Winters will be better than last year if healthy.  Shell is a young guy with another year of experience.  Long is a good upgrade over Wesley Johnson and I think Carp will be slightly better in the Zone Blocking Scheme than he's been in the past, although he's still miscast in this type of scheme.

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Rick Dennison is an awesome O-Line coach and has been around since 1995 and brought up under Denver and their notorious zone blocking scheme's and one of the reasons why I'd love Le'Veon Bell come 2019 (behind an improved O-Line) and Dennison would then know exactly how to utilize an elite back such as Bell.

Overall I'm looking forward to our O-Line's progression under Dennison who's been a part of a 6 AFC Championships and 3 Super Bowl winning teams over the years. 

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9 hours ago, Beerfish said:

A long time NFL gm said never listen to your oline coach when it comes to personnel because they always feel they can coach guys up to be good or good enough.  Now it seems to me that zone blocking helps alleviate pressure on oline one on one but a negative of zone block ig is if you have one miscommunication on the oline someone is coming in unhindered to kill your qb.

I’m not one of those who’s mad at Bowles for the way he’s handled players in the pre-season. It could be he’s done a pragmatic job of keeping us clear of any major injuries to this point,  but the flip-side is the danger of us being completely undercooked when the games matter and this ties in with your point above. TheBiggest worry is that for zone blocking to work you actually need that familiarity and repetition as a unit and with zero snaps together I can’t see how we come out firing on all cylinders as a cohesive unit. 

I expect a disjointed effort but hope to be proved wrong. Dennison has been very successful doing this before so it;’s not like he’s an unknown

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Beachum and Long are the keys. If they are both healthy and play to their ability, the line will be fine.

If either guy is hurt or ineffective, we are in trouble. Especially Beachum.

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Jets O-lineman put in the work and has shot at breakout season

Kelvin Beachum knew Brandon Shell was getting serious about his NFL career when he learned the offensive tackle had traveled to Dallas to train and spend time with fellow Jets guard Brian Winters and later visited with veteran Jaguars offensive tackle Jermey Parnell.

“I was really excited about some of the things he did this offseason, going and getting around some other players,” Beachum said Friday at the Jets training facility in Florham Park.

“I’m excited by the fact that he went out of his comfort zone and went to learn from people who have been around the league longer than he has. I’m excited he’s taken it upon himself to invest in himself. That’s what it’s all about to play the game for a long time.”

In his third season, Shell has the opportunity to establish himself as a reliable run blocker and pass protector for Sam Darnold’s right side. At 6-foot-5, 324 pounds, he has the size and famous last name to be a success — Art Shell, the legendary Raiders offensive tackle, coach and Hall of Famer, is Brandon’s great uncle.

A fifth-round draft pick out of South Carolina in 2016, Brandon Shell has made 15 career starts. But his breakout season should begin with Monday Night’s season opener at Detroit.

“It’s time to play,” Shell said. “We’re ready.”

Shell said he got out of his comfort zone this offseason to improve as a player. Footwork, technique and a strong mental approach are needed to play offensive line in the NFL. Seeking the advice of experienced players helped Shell begin training camp with a more focused approach.

“I’m just trying to get better every day,” he said Friday. “I learned to focus on accomplishing the small things and to keep working and trying to get better. You don’t just want to make it through practice. You want to get better.”

Shell has been a work in progress much like the entire Jets offensive line after the recent retirements of Nick Mangold and D’Brickashaw Ferguson. Shell played in eight games his rookie season, starting three. Last year, he started all 12 games he played in. Entering his third season, Shell needs to be more than a role player. He needs to become a mainstay. He needs to be a franchise right tackle to go with the franchise quarterback. Shell wants to be that for Darnold or whoever the Jets quarterback might be.

“Regardless of who is back there, you have to protect the quarterback,” Shell said. “It’s not a matter of doing something harder because he’s a rookie. You have to protect the quarterback on every passing down. That’s just a given for us.”

When not on the field, Shell is a slow mover, as if the day has 25 hours instead of 24. But on the field, he can be a quick blast of power and force.

“In this game, you have to have something different about yourself,” Beachum said. “You have to be able cut it on when you need to, and he’s proven he has the ability to do so and has done so.”

It’s in the genes. He doesn’t shy away from the Art Shell legacy, and uses it for motivation.

“It means a lot,” he said. “But at the end of day, you have to play for the name that’s on the front of the jersey as well as the name that’s on the back. I’m representing both the same way — with pride.”

The Lions of rookie head coach Matt Patricia boast a formidable defensive line headed by defensive end Ezekiel Ansah, who had 12 sacks last year. The best way to keep Ansah from creating havoc and bothering Darnold is to establish some threat of a running game, something the Jets haven’t always done with consistency.

“You’ve got to establish the running game every time you play,” Shell said. “It helps to have balance.”

Beginning Monday night, it’s time for Brandon Shell to make his name known.

https://nypost.com/2018/09/08/jets-o-lineman-put-in-the-work-and-has-shot-at-breakout-season/

 

Oh no! Shell is saying it'll be ground and pound offense

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Big guys lined up in front of Darnold a huge key for Jets

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. (AP) — All eyes will be on Sam Darnold when the New York Jets open their season against the Detroit Lions.

But the five big guys lined up in front of him will play a major role in the success — or failure — of the rookie quarterback and his offense Monday night.

“It’s super important developing that trust and chemistry with your teammates,” Darnold said. “That’s mostly what football is. We’re on that field together, we’ve got to communicate. We’ve all got to be in sync together, so that’s really what it is, just communicating.”

That has been a point of emphasis all offseason, but is particularly important this week as the 21-year-old quarterback continues to try to build a rapport with an offensive line that struggled with consistency last season.

It’s still a work-in-progress, though. When left tackle Kelvin Beachum, left guard James Carpenter, center Spencer Long, right guard Brian Winters and right tackle Brandon Shell trot onto the field in noisy Ford Field, it’ll mark the first time all five will be together for a snap in a game.

“I’m very optimistic,” offensive line coach Rick Dennison said. “I think they’ve worked hard and done a good job. Obviously, it’s the start of the regular season and there’s a little bit of the unknown, but I feel good about the guys.”

Beachum didn’t play in the preseason because of a sprained right foot that kept him out of team drills for most of training camp. He has been a full participant in practice this week and appears to be a full go.

Same for Winters, who dealt with tightness in his back this summer and sat out the second preseason game against Washington.

“We’ve been around each other quite a bit during this whole process, so we can’t get into this excuse-making that people on the outside are trying to bring into the locker room right now,” Beachum said. “For us, we’ve got to go out and perform. We’re professionals. Every one of us across the offensive line has played games in the National Football League. When our number is called upon, we know we’ve got to execute and perform.”

The Jets are facing a tough task off the bat with Ezekiel Ansah roaming the Lions’ defensive front. He had 12 sacks last season and has been lining up on the right side of new coach Matt Patricia’s defense, but is athletic enough to move all around the line.

Beachum is fully expecting to face him quite a bit Monday night. The two last squared off in 2016 when Beachum was with Jacksonville. Ansah had four overall tackles in that game, but no sacks.

“He’s a very disruptive pass rusher,” Beachum said. “I would say one of the best in the league. The NFC North presents a number of different animals on the edge. He’s one of those different animals in the NFC North. I’m excited to play him again. I know it’s going to be a great test to start the year.”

The game will also mark Long’s debut with the Jets after he signed with New York as a free agent in the offseason. He replaces Wesley Johnson, who struggled last year in a full-time role as the center after the Jets released Nick Mangold.

Long, who spent his first four seasons with Washington, has impressed his new teammates with his cerebral approach to the game.

“He’s been great, real good,” Winters said. “He’s a good communicator, a physical player. He’s in the books a lot. He’s a ‘mind’ guy and he kind of reminds me a little bit of Nick. Nick was real smart when it came to the breakdown of the game.”

Added Shell: “He analyzes everything and it’s like he knows what’s going to happen, so he puts us in the right position with calls. I’m just grateful to have him on the line.”

As the center, Long is responsible for calling the signals along the offensive line and making sure the guys on either side of him are seeing the same thing.

Since offseason workouts, he has been working closely with his linemates on the field and in the film room, trying to develop the type of chemistry that will be key on gameday.

“It goes as he goes,” Winters said. “He makes the calls and we’ve got to abide by it and listen to it. Whatever he says, goes. He’s got a lot of weight on his shoulders, but we all trust in him.”

And, Darnold will need to have faith in all five linemen, who’ll be trying to keep him upright while also giving him time to throw or busting open holes for the running backs to run through and get the offense moving consistently.

“He’s done a great job of being able to communicate and understand what the defense is presenting him, and then putting us in a better position to either pick up a blitz or slide a different way,” Beachum said of Darnold. “He’s done things the right way to put us in a better position.

“At the end of the day, we have to make sure that we protect him.”

https://apnews.com/f88520c92e1147abaf1d733b1a35759c

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On 9/7/2018 at 7:42 PM, Defense Wins Championships said:

I'm not in love with our O-Line (far from it) but I do not see a catastrophic type of category 5 disaster in which is waiting to happen (due to seeing 5 more than capable NFL starters). 

LT: Kelvin Beachum when healthy (which he currently is) is a very, very good NFL starting LT who graded out as a 69.3 (2017) in comparison to Ryan Clady the year before (2016) with a grade of 51.2. And is now heading into his second season (as a Jet) and has previously protected the blindside of Ben Roethlisberger as a Pittsburgh Steeler (2014 was rated as the 5th best LT with a 97.5 grade in pass blocking efficiency and 3rd in pass blocking efficiency, behind only Joe Thomas and Andrew Whitworth) and still only 29 years of age.

LG: James Carpenter is a former 1st round draft pick out of Alabama and one who's build like an animal at 6'5 321 lbs and as a starting NFL LG he's got 93 games of experience under his belt consisting of 87 career NFL starts. Back in only 2013 played in all 16 games and started 10 games @ LG for the eventual SB champion Seattle Seahawks and just the following seaon (2014) started 13 games for the eventual NFC Champions and SB losing Seattle Seahawks; and has since started all 48 games since becoming a Jet (2015). Still only 29 years of age. 

C: Spencer Long may not be a Pro Bowl/All-Pro caliber Center but he's more than capable of solid play as a former 3rd round draft pick (2014) who since played in 40 games with 31 career starts and more importantly is an upgrade over Wesley Johnson who did rank 32nd (deal last) amongst all starting Center's last year (2017). You've gotta considered the Center position as being much improved with one of our bigger FA additions (Spencer Long). 

RG: Brian Winters is another big hog @ 6'4 320 lbs and a pretty underrated 5th year starter and former 3rd round draft pick who's now got 55 career starts under his belt and still young at only 27 years of age. 

RT: Brandon Shell (who's the great nephew of HOF Offensive Tackle legend in Art Shell) is absolutely massive himself @ 6'5 325 lbs and as only a 2nd year player (out of the SEC of South Carolina) started 12 games for us last year. And showed a lot of promise while doing so. Could develop into our next Damien Woody @ RT (who was very underrated for us). 

I do hope to see Mike Maccagnan attack our Offensive-Line during Free Agency and through the draft both early and often but contrary to popular belief our O-Line could be on the verge of being much improved upon last year and a specific unit in which I'm looking forward to watching and how it progresses throughout the course of our 2018 season. 

Quoted for Truth!

O-Linemen such as Brandon Moore and Damien Woody were always severely underrated by our fan base and I just knew coming into 2018 that our current O-Line was another classic example of being underrated to the point of catastrophic category 5 type of disaster waiting to happen. 

These guys (all 5 of them) can really, really play. 

Sam Darnold was only sacked twice and one of those sacks weren't on our O-Line as Darnold broke his own pocket and should've thrown it away.

They also manhandled Detroit's front 7 in the run game. 

And how about Isaiah Crowell running behind these hogs?!?

Pay attention to how aggressive and hungry they appear on this game changing run...

One of the most overlooked Maccagnan additions (feasted as a Cleveland Brown) and during his 1st game as a Jet just rushed for 102 yards off of only 10 carries with a long of 62 yards and two TD's and sweet Jesus I had no idea he was this FAST!!

 

I had no idea he had those types of wheels. 

His style of run with reckless abandonment and zero fear reminds me so much of Marshawn Lynch before becoming famous with Seattle as a Buffalo Bill. 

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