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Thursday, August 25, 2016

Bragging Rights Preview

  Trivia time: Joe Namath was drafted by the AFL Jets. What NFL teams drafted Namath? Answer found later in Green Tidbits.

  The Jets were coming off the biggest game in NFL history seven and half months earlier. The nation was split with the Vietnam War going on. Hundreds of thousands of kids were gathering in upstate New York to witness the most famous rock concert in history. It was August 17, 1969 and the upstart New York Jets were meeting their cross town rivals, the New York Giants for the first time. Weeb Ewbank used the terminology: “battle for the braggin’ rights” which has stuck all these years. The Jets won the first game 37-14. This Saturday night (7:30 PM CBS) both teams will take the field in Met Life Stadium. Though much of the luster of the game has disappeared, both coaches would like to win. Usually the third exhibition game is noted for the extended play of the starters who may play into the third quarter.
  Here are some things I’d like to see in this third exhibition game:
1)    I want to see Muhammad Wilkerson play. Ideally I’d like to see him get anywhere from 10-15 snaps.
2)    Ditto for Matt Forte. I’d like to see him carry the ball 4-8 times and catch 1-3 passes out of the backfield.
3)    Stop the opposition on their first possession. Even though it is only an exhibition game, the first two drives of each previous game were way too easy.
4)    I want punter Lachlan Edwards to continue his fine punting. When he punts, don’t just look at his yardage. His punts have outstanding hang time making it much easier for our ST (Special Teams) to cover the return.
5)    How about 5+ completions to our tight end position? I know Chan Gailey doesn’t utilize tight ends much in his offense but let’s show the opposition there is a possible threat.
6)    Let’s start Darron Lee and see how he does on some running plays. Just as the team gets in shape for stamina, they also need to experience contact. Lee has looked great going end to end on the field. Let’s see if he can play the run against the Giants first team.
7)    Ryan Fitzpatrick needs to take his team down the field for a score on a drive with 10 or 12 plays, 80 yards mixing up the run and pass.
8)    Love to see some time management expertise from Todd Bowles. Tough to do it in pre-season and I’m not 100% sure he has mastered this tough coaching skill.

There was an excellent article this week in the Wall Street Journal about the Jets second round draft picks. Here they are for the past 7 years:

2016 Christian Hackenberg
2015 Devin Smith
2014 Jace Amaro
2013 Geno Smith
2012 Stephen Hill
2011 No Pick
2010 Vladimir Ducasse

Some others: Mike Nugent, Justin Miller both 2005, Jon McGraw 2002, Dorian Boose 1998, Rick Terry 1997. Let me stop it here so we all don’t throw up. Seriously it has been tough for the Jets in the 2nd round. Everyone knows you can do all your homework and still have misses.

Speaking of the draft, here’s a scary thought. Next year the Jets may need 3 new quarterbacks. Geno Smith will be gone and Ryan Fitzpatrick has a one-year contract so he can go also. And if Christian Hackenberg turns out to be a bust, it can be a busy off season for our GM.

  Deon Simon (#93) has impressed during pre-season. This second year nose tackle from 
Northwestern State-Louisiana has shown in practice he wants to play and against the Redskins he showed he can play-at least against the second team. Let’s keep on eye on this former 7th round pick. If he is a player, he will get reps this year.
                                            (See his draft profile below)

 Green Tidbits:

….Manish Mehta beat me to it with his Wednesday article insinuating Christain Hackenberg may “develop” an injury and go on the IR for the season….Speaking of Hackenberg-former Bears college scouting director Greg Gabriel tweeted Saturday.”Hardly a surprise. #wasted pick.” “The Jets are finding out Hackenberg can’t play,”….Speaking of second rounders, Mark Gastineau (’79) was probably the Jets best pick in that round….Anxious to see if Robby Anderson can have a good follow-up game. He leads NFL receivers in yardage in pre-season….Lorenzo Mauldin (LB-#55) needs to continue to improve. It would be nice if his 4 sacks last year doubled to 8….Speaking of linebackers, “younger & quicker” was what GM Mike Maccagnan wanted to accomplish and he is on the right track adding Darron Lee & Jordan Jenkins….Greg Buttle was on WABC radio this week talking politics. He did a fine job….Former Jets (and Oakland Raider) safety Burgess Owens has been making the airwaves also promoting his book, Liberalism or How to Turn Good Men into Whiners, Weenies and Wimps. Burgess is very articulate and does his homework. Just like when he played….In 1965 the St. Louis Cardinals selected Joe Namath twelfth overall in the NFL draft, while the Jets selected him with the first overall pick of the AFL draft.

Deon Simon, 6’4” 321lbs.

STRENGTHS Imposing, wide frame. Displays powerful upper half with ability to manhandle centers or undersized guards. Can eat blocks and command his spot. Uses his hands well down the line of scrimmage against the run and has the tools to become a factor against the run as a pro.

WEAKNESSES Fails to fire off the ball with quickness or explosion. Plays with straight legs, leading to inconsistency in his forward charge after contact. Motor runs hot and cold depending on game he's having. Turns into bored pass rusher if initial pass rush is quelled. Still learning to use strength to be more effective bull rusher. Has limited play radius against the run.

DRAFT PROJECTION Round 7 or priority free agent

BOTTOM LINE Big-bodied defensive tackle who could find a home as a two-gapping nose guard in a 3-4. Simon is 24 years old and is coming off of a knee injury, but he has noticeable power and shows potential to slow the run in the middle of a defense. He needs much better pad level and plenty of coaching for his potential to be unlocked.

This weeks newsletter is sponsored by Amazon Prime Instant video and Marty Schupak's sports instructional videos. Always free on Amazon Prime!

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