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Sunday, June 17, 2018

Jets Gear Up For New Era With The Same Coach!

The Jets mini-camp just finished and a kind of new era is beginning. Though the Jets still have Todd Bowles as head coach, if you are a Jet fan like me there is a different feeling going into the 2018 season. I don’t know if it is the Jets lucking out and getting Sam Darnold or maybe it is new offensive coordinator Jeremy Bates. Or is it that they finally cut ties with Christian Hackenberg. Whatever it is I’m seeing the glass half full for the first time in a while. The 2018 Jets will be younger and more interesting. Sure they need an edge pass rusher in the worst way and question marks loom big with the receiving corps and the offensive line. The injury and arrest situation is nothing to brag about but looking at the draft and what the Jets did in free agency are steps to building a good foundation for this franchise. Up I-95 there have been whispers of problems within the Patriots organization with cracks in the 
BB-Brady-Kraft relationship(s). Their problems extend beyond personalities with offensive line issues as well as receiver Julian Edelman serving a 4 game suspension. Morale there has not good since the benching of Malcolm Butler in the Super Bowl and it is still haunting all the players who thought that game was surely theirs with Butler. Whatever the reason, in about six weeks the Jets will look different and it is refreshing for the first time in a while. As a big critic of Todd Bowles, I have to give him credit for looking more the part as head coach now than anytime in his first three years. He must work on his clock management and in-game decisions especially in the final two minutes but players will always tell you how continuity is a big part of the formula for a successful franchise so this is the last mulligan Todd Bowles gets. 

Jets Turmoil
What has 180 legs and keeps getting arrested and injured? 
Must be the NY Jets franchise! I can’t keep up with the Jet arrests and now the injuries. What in the name of John Schmidt is going on here? I don’t think my Camry can reach 90 MPH and now every Jet arrested seems to be going 100+ MPH with one foot on the brake. And the injuries. First Terrell Pryor and now Rontez Miles. Are the Jets using the same training staff and doctors as the NY Mets? I hope not. I don’t want to sound like I’m making light of the situation but for god's sake, some common sense here. Linebacker Dylan Donahue was arrested for DWI driving the wrong way in the Lincoln Tunnel and crashing into a bus. He also faces a drunken-driving charge in his home state of Montana. The Robby Anderson situation is ridiculous. This guy is so lucky he had the felony charges dropped. If it was up to me, I'd put him in a two week bootcamp situation. He has got to get his life in order. Rookie tight end Chris Herndon was arrested and charged with driving while intoxicated after crashing his car into a vehicle operated by a 76-year-old man. According to the accident report obtained by ESPN, an eyewitness told NJ State Police that an SUV believed to be driven by Herndon was traveling at least 100 mph on Route 80. The report said Herndon's SUV flipped after colliding with another vehicle, which caught fire. The SUV slid approximately 700 feet after initial contact. In addition CB Rashard Robinson was arrested in Hanover Township for possessing marijuana-laced candy, according to police.  And Lorenzo Mauldin had an assault charge dropped. This is not good. By the way the Jets trading for Rashard Robinson was an awful trade. He has had a history of issues and for a cornerback he cannot cover a bed. This was a bad one for Mike Maccagnan. Not quite on the Hackenberg level but bad.

Special Teams
The Jets finished 29th in the league in return yardage. Specifically for punt returns they averaged 4.5 yards per return the worst in the NFL. It was a combination of horrible return men and it seemed the opposition always got their best punts off against the Jets. In the draft they picked up speedster Trenton Cannon, the RB from Virginia State who returned kickoffs in college but did not return punts. The word is he has not looked good in OTA’s as a punt returner. This can be a horrible situation that it is often overlooked with the potential yardage that can be gained on special teams. Field position is so important and when you see a team like the Jets return punts 5 yards or less each time and the Detroit Lions return every punt 14 yards, it makes a huge impact over the course of a game and a season. The Jets have got to get this right if they ever want to get to the playoffs. 

Green Tidbits
…..Former Jets tight end Kellen Winslow Jr.'s situation is unfortunate. According to NBC San Diego, the San Diego County Sheriff's department said Thursday Winslow has been charged with kidnapping and rape in addition to first-degree burglary….. Safety J.J. Wilcox came close to signing with the San Francisco 49ers. At the last second he changed his mind and said he wanted to play for Todd Bowles…..Jon Gruden blaming the unions’ CBA agreement and lack of reps for cutting Christian Hackenberg is hogwash. The guy just cannot play and no one wants to say it…..Sam Darnold improved as OTA’s progressed and was a sponge in the film room…..A shout out to NY Post Jet beat writer Brian Costello who recently lost his dad. Our deepest condolences. Brian is one of the good guys…..WR Chad Hansen has been the most improved Jet during OTA's…..The comparison drew quizzical looks and are-you-sure follow-up questions, but Stump Mitchell (RB coach) wasn’t backing down. The Jets’ running backs coach really sees some LaDainian Tomlinson in second-year pro Elijah McGuire…..Jets defensive coordinator Kacy Rodgers has his son Kacy Rodgers the second trying to make the squad…..After having auditioned for the Jets earlier this week, Courtney Upshaw has signed with the organization. The 2012 second-round pick initially entered the NFL as a linebacker, but he’s since been converted to a defensive lineman…..

What can be a better gift this year?


                                          Marty Schupak's new book on youth baseball is now available!

                                                                   Click Here:

"The most complete book I've ever seen on youth baseball."
-Bobby Woods, former pro player and coach

"The only book I've ever seen that explains strategies in simple detail."
-Tony Milewski, coach for 30 years 

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