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6 starting spots up for grabs as Jets enter training camp

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7 hours ago, Jetsfan80 said:


6 starting spots up for grabs as Jets enter training camp

17 hours ago

The Jets have a lot of things to figure out once they report to training camp on July 28 — especially when it comes to their starting lineup.

General manager Joe Douglas spent the offseason improving New York’s roster, but there is still plenty of uncertainty surrounding who is starting at multiple positions on both sides of the ball. Fortunately for the Jets, training camp is the ideal time for position battles to unfold and for starting jobs to be won.

So, which starting positions will be up for grabs once training camp kicks off in less than three weeks? Here are six to keep an eye on.

No. 2 Wide Receiver


Jamison Crowder is entrenched as a starter in the slot and speed demon Breshad Perriman is a lock to start on the outside. That leaves the No. 2 spot on New York’s depth chart open for the taking.

Quincy Enunwa and Denzel Mims were set to battle for the job until a neck injury put Enunwa out for the season. Mims now has a major inside track at beginning 2020 starting opposite Perriman, but the likes of Braxton Berrios, Josh Doctson and Vyncint Smith will have something to say about that throughout training camp and the preseason.

Mims is likely to emerge as the winner of this position battle, but that is not a foregone conclusion. Nothing is going to be handed to the rookie in his first NFL training camp. If he slips up at any point, New York’s “veterans” will be chomping at the bit to impress and take the spot.


Right Tackle


Barring any unforeseen circumstances, rookie Mekhi Becton will begin 2020 as the Jets’ starting left tackle. It remains to be seen who will be lining up on the other side of the line at right tackle, though.

The battle for the right tackle spot will come down to free agent signing George Fant and second-year pro Chuma Edoga. Fant is the favorite to win the job, as New York did not give him a three-year deal worth $27 million to sit on the sideline. Edoga’s play in 2019 did not exactly prove he is ready to step into a starting role, either.


Outside Linebacker


There is plenty of intrigue surrounding the battle for New York’s second outside linebacker spot entering training camp.

Tarell Basham came on strong at the end of 2019, while rookie Jabari Zuniga has the potential to develop into the kind of pass-rusher the Jets have been lacking in recent years. He also has a ringing endorsement from defensive coordinator Gregg Williams working in his favor.

Frankie Luvu and Bryce Huff are also in the mix, but expect the decision to ultimately come down to Basham and Zuniga. Either way, the Jets will be starting a solid edge rusher with promise in Week 1.


Middle Linebacker

As the old saying goes, three is a crowd. That rings especially true when it comes to New York’s middle linebacker situation.

Blake Cashman, Patrick Onwuasor and Avery Williamson are set to duke it out throughout training camp for the starting spot opposite C.J. Mosley. Cashman shined as a rookie before an injury brought an abrupt halt to his rookie season, while a torn ACL ended Williamson’s 2019 campaign in the preseason. Onwuasor, meanwhile, spent last season with the Ravens.

This position battle is tough to call. Onwuasor might have the inside track at the job considering his experience playing next to Mosley in Baltimore. The Jets also have a financial incentive to award Onwuasor the job over Williamson, as New York could save money by parting ways with the latter before the regular season kicks off.


No. 2 Cornerback

The Jets will have plenty of options to choose from when it comes time to decide who will open 2020 as the No. 2 cornerback opposite Pierre Desir.

Bless Austin and recently-acquired Quincy Wilson are the frontrunners for the job. Rookie Bryce Hall cannot be slept on, as he was one of the best cornerbacks in college football before a gruesome leg injury ended his senior year at Virginia and sent his draft stock plummeting.

Austin seems to be the favorite, but Wilson has the talent to earn the spot — he just has to figure out a way to get back on track after a rough ending to his tenure with the Colts. Hall will also have a legitimate chance to win the job if he can return to form.



Sam Ficken and Brett Maher are not exactly the most inspiring kicking competition candidates in the world, but that’s who the Jets have right now.

Maher is coming off a rough 2019 season with the Cowboys, while Ficken was below average for the Jets a year ago. It’s nearly impossible to call who will win this position battle right now, but it is certainly one to monitor closely throughout camp and the preseason. Don’t be surprised if another name is added to the battle, too.

I would still be surprised if Beckton starts on the left side,  I see Fant as the starting LT while Beckton begins his pro career on the right side. 

As far as OLB... Zuniga is not likely to be a starter.  I see him being used as a situational pass rusher on clear passing downs and on special teams as well.  I figure Besham gets the nod.

For WR, I see Mims, but there is always the coach's pet Berios that could play into things. Gase loves him and may very well give him more consideration than is due.

ILB ??? One word here...  Injuries.  Who is going to hold up ??? CJ Mosley is a question due to injury.  Cashman has an injury issue as does Williamson.  This is going to be decided by who can stay on the field. 

For CB.  I see Austin getting the nod as the # 2 based on his performance last year.  

Kicker ??? Ug...

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12 minutes ago, Bleedin Green said:

Agreed, but the one part you hope works in the Jets' favor is that, for both Mosley and Williamson, last season was a bit of an outlier for them, as neither had injury issues throughout their careers to that point.  So as long as they are fully recovered, you'd have to hope they can be considered more reliable.

Cashman is a completely different story, as injury issues were a red flag coming out and seemed to be often be cited as the primary reason he fell the to the 5th round.  Given that, I think they just need to take advantage of the very low cost of Cashman and basically just consider him a high level reserve/sub player, as betting on him for more than that is likely dangerous until he can prove he's gotten over the injury bug.

I think it would take the Jets coming away both being seriously impressed with Onwuasor and getting a decent trade offer for Williamson for the line-up to end up being anything other than Mosley/Williamson.

The injuries that Mosley and Williamson are coming off of are not trivial.  Even if they didn't have a history of injury like Cashman, they do now.  I don't have any confidence that any of them can hold up.   I expect to see a whole new stable of LB's in 2021. 

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