AFC East: New York Jets

Jets Camp Report: Day 28

August, 20, 2014
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FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- The New York Jets officially moved rookie cornerback Dexter McDougle to the reserve/injured list this afternoon. McDougle, who many thought was bound for the starting cornerback spot, tore his ACL on Aug. 10 and yesterday tweeted that he was going to be having surgery.

The Jets are struggling at the spot, since starter Dee Milliner has a high ankle sprain that will likely keep him out for a few more weeks.

McDougle, 5-foot-10, 195 pounds, was drafted in the third round. He played for Maryland last year, but missed most of last season with a shoulder injury.
  • Don't try to define Geno Smith. The Jets' don't-call-him-starting quarterback said he doesn't appreciate the limitations of quarterback labels. "I hate the fact that people always say, 'Pocket passer versus running,'" Smith said. "I understand why they say it, but a quarterback is a quarterback. You've got to do what it takes to win, whether it's run or pass."
  • Marty Mornhinweg was happy to discuss how great a quarterback competition is to make everyone better. But when he was asked if having Smith start meant that somehow Michael Vick lost the starting job in the competition. "No. No," Mornhinweg said. "Mike has done a beautiful job, and he has played at a high level. Mike can still play at a real high level."
  • It's never too early to talk smack, and Rex Ryan took Andre Williams' bait. When the Giants rookie running back from Boston College said the Giants were the real New York team, Ryan countered with: "Last time I saw him he was getting smoked by Clemson." Zing!
  • Cornerback Darrin Walls is the latest defensive back to get reps with the first team as a tryout of sorts. Ryan isn't sure if Walls will stick. "I always call him my outstanding middle [reliever]. He's a guy you can put in there and you don't lose much. But [can he] prove that he can be the starter, go out there and it's different. Sometimes, for whatever reason, there are some guys that would rather come off the bench than be the starter. I don't understand it, but sometimes that happens. Whether Darrin is that guy or not, I'm not sure."
FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- The annual preseason game between the New York Jets and New York Giants may not actually count, but you wouldn't know that for all the verbiage -- and regret -- that comes with it every season.

Jets coach Rex Ryan picked up on Giants running back Andre Williams' comments that the Giants were the "real New York team," and then Ryan shot back at the rookie. The teams square off on Friday night.

[+] EnlargeRex Ryan
AP PhotoCoach Rex Ryan and the Jets say they're fired up for Friday's preseason game against the Giants.
"Last time I saw him he was getting smoked by Clemson," Ryan said Wednesday, referring to an Oct. 12 game between Williams' Boston College Eagles and Clemson, the team Ryan's son Seth plays for. The Tigers won that game 24-14 and held Williams to 70 yards on 24 carries.

"I will say that kid's a good back, though. He is," Ryan said. "I was like, 'Is anybody going to tackle him?' It's great. I have a funny feeling he's going to get some Riddells [helmets] on him, but we'll see. I have a feeling he's going to be pumped up and trust me, our guys are going to be pumped up, too."

Ryan said the back and forth just shows once again that the matchup between the two New York teams means a little more than other preseason games.

"This is the only time you get to play each other," Ryan said, "and I think it amps up a little bit. I really do."

As if to back his coach up, Jets defensive lineman Damon Harrison called out Williams via social media.

"See you Friday Mr. Williams...#JetLifeeeeee," Harrison tweeted.

Now for the regret.

Last year, Ryan put likely starter Mark Sanchez in during the fourth quarter of the Jets-Giants game. The quarterback took a hit from Marvin Austin that resulted in a season-ending shoulder injury.

During his postgame news conference, Ryan got so frustrated by one persistent line of questioning that he turned sideways to answer.

"I got a lot of flak from you guys," Ryan said Wednesday. "Let's face it, they [wanted to] run me out of here. Was that my proudest moment? Probably not. It's kind of funny, I forget who I was sideways with. But you know what? I think I just got a little tired of [the questions]."

The question that got to Ryan that night: Was he ready to name Geno Smith as the starting quarterback, given the injury to Sanchez? Ryan said then he wasn't going to answer.

"Sometimes after games," the coach said Wednesday, "we tell our players to cool off a little bit, but sometimes I need to cool off, too."

Ultimately, the Jets put Sanchez on the reserve/injured list as the one player designated to return. Now he's playing backup for the Eagles, and looking a lot better.

Given an opportunity to redo the news conference, Ryan said he would do it differently.

"There's a lot of things you'd take back in life," he said. "That's probably one of them."
FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- Newly signed cornerback LeQuan Lewis -- who called himself a "new old guy” may be late to the New York Jets' squad, but the second-year player out of Arizona State made an impression with two interceptions during Wednesday's practice.

Lewis had one against QB Michael Vick on a pass intended for WR Greg Salas, and the other off QB Matt Simms.

"My mindset is just to make plays when my number is called,” said Lewis, who trains in the summer with Arizona Cardinals' receiver Larry Fitzgerald in Minnesota.

The first set of roster cuts comes on Saturday, so time is of the essence.
  • WR Jalen Saunders, who isn't practicing after a medical incident, was on the sideline, and LB Antwan Barnes is still on the physically unable to perform list. CB Dex McDougle said via Twitter that he was having surgery on a torn ACL Wednesday, and coach Rex Ryan said he would likely land on the reserve/injured list afterwards.
  • Dee Milliner, with a high ankle sprain, was also out. RB Chris Ivory was limited, and RB Chris Johnson didn't practice, but it was a planned day off.
  • The Jets got several injured players back, including C Nick Mangold (toe), CB Dimitri Patterson (leg), CB Ras-I Dowling (groin), WR Eric Decker and TE Jeff Cumberland. "We're starting to get healthy and that's a good thing,” Ryan said.
  • The Jets weren't in pads for their final training camp practice in Florham Park. On Thursday the team moves to Hofstra, site of their former headquarters.

New York Jets' projected roster

August, 18, 2014
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Examining the New York Jets' roster:

QUARTERBACKS (3)

No changes from last week or the week before that or ... well, you get the idea. The only question here is when Smith gets the official starting nod. Rookie Tajh Boyd missed an opportunity, struggling mightily against the Cincinnati Bengals.

RUNNING BACKS (5)

Richardson is squarely on the bubble. With Ivory (ribs) banged up, it makes sense to keep Richardson as insurance. But is that insurance more valuable than another defensive lineman or linebacker? Decisions, decisions.

WIDE RECEIVERS (6)

Saunders was hospitalized for an undisclosed reason after a one-car accident late last week, according to the team. I'm starting to get the sense he has a medical-related issue that could impact his immediate playing status. For now, we'll keep him on the roster. Clyde Gates and Greg Salas have turned it up, putting pressure on the fifth and sixth guys. Gates and Ford are similar players -- speed guys with kickoff returning ability -- so it'll be one or the other.

TIGHT ENDS (3)

With Cumberland (tight Achilles' tendon) sitting out, Amaro saw significant action against the Bengals and made some strides. Believe it or not, he leads the team with 42 receiving yards. Eat your heart out, Mike Ditka.

OFFENSIVE LINEMEN (9)

Even though Aboushi started for Winters against the Bengals, the top five appear set. Aboushi's versatility is a plus; he can play both tackle and both guard spots. The Caleb Schlauderaff era could be winding down.

DEFENSIVE LINEMEN (5)

Defensive line and tight end are the only position groups that have remained status quo throughout our weekly projections.

LINEBACKERS (9)

Stop the presses, we have a change: We're dropping fifth-round pick Jeremiah George, replacing him with Enemkpali. If the world according to John Idzik truly is a meritocracy, how can they ignore Enemkpali, who has a team-high two sacks and a blocked punt? Granted, he's playing against backups, but so is George -- and he isn't producing as much as Enemkpali, a sixth-round pick.

CORNERBACKS (6)

Welcome to the most beleaguered position group on the team. Ras-I Dowling aggravated a groin injury against the Bengals, continuing the trend from his days with the New England Patriots: He's always hurt. So we dropped Dowling in favor of Patrick, whose playing time has increased. Lankster has been been a nice surprise.

SAFETIES (4)

Yeah, we still consider Allen a safety even though he started at corner. Things could change, of course. Pryor left his calling card in Cincinnati, that's for sure.

SPECIALISTS (3)

Quigley responded to some pressure from Jacob Schum with a nice game, averaging 51.0 (gross) and 47.3 (net).
A day-after look at some of the positives and negatives from the New York Jets' 25-17 win over the Cincinnati Bengals:

RISERS

1. The Idzik 12 (now 10): It hasn’t been a smooth summer for John Idzik’s 12-man draft class, beset by injuries, but some of the rookies stood out in Cincinnati. Safety Calvin Pryor was the star, recording two tackles for loss, two pass breakups and one fumble recovery. He played a team-high 48 defensive snaps, showing he deserves more time with the starters. Tight end Jace Amaro made two nice catches (no drops), prompting Rex Ryan to say, “He kind of reminded me of Ditka.” Funny, Rex. It wasn’t a flawless night for Amaro, who appeared to be the guilty party on a 12-man penalty. Pass rusher IK Enemkpali recorded his second strip sack in as many games, also contributing a blocked punt on special teams. He’s making it difficult for the coaches to cut him.

2. Demario Davis: The linebacker’s versatility was on full display. He showed his explosiveness as a blitzer, shooting a gap and recording a strip sack. That set up the Jets’ first touchdown. Later, Davis showed he’s adept in pass coverage, tipping away a pass some 10 to 15 yards from the line of scrimmage. This has all the signs of a breakout season for Davis.

3. Chris Johnson: He showed some of his old burst, getting around the corner on a couple of well-blocked running plays. On another play, he lined up wide and got the ball on an end around. Johnson finished with 63 yards on 10 carries, much of his production coming out of the pistol formation. This was a big step in the right direction for Johnson and the entire running game, which amassed 169 yards.

FALLERS

1. The starting secondary: This probably won't be the group that will line up Sept. 7 against the Oakland Raiders -- a silver lining -- but there’s still reason for concern. Andy Dalton was 8-for-8, throwing for 144 yards and a touchdown. Safety-turned-cornerback Antonio Allen, nickelback Kyle Wilson and safety Dawan Landry were involved in some of the big plays. We’re mixing apples and oranges here, but in his last five quarters against the Jets (counting last season’s 49-9 drubbing), Dalton has passed for 469 yards.

2. The Fight Crew: Offensive linemen Brian Winters, Breno Giacomini and Willie Colon combined for seven penalties for 90 yards, plus one declined. In 39 snaps, Winters was flagged four times -- two holding calls for 20 yards, unnecessary roughness for 15 and unsportsmanlike conduct for 15. In a surprise, he came off the bench, with Oday Aboushi getting the start at left guard. Ryan said he wanted to give Aboushi, who has played other spots in camp, a good look at left guard. Clearly, Winters, Colon and Giacomini wanted to set a tone against the chippy Bengals, but they have to play smarter in the regular season.

3. Tajh Boyd: This was a rough one. Even Ryan, Boyd’s biggest supporter, had to acknowledge the struggles of the rookie quarterback. “Tajh is a better player than that,” Ryan said. “We just have to get him going. Come on, kid. I’ve seen him play way better.” Boyd missed easy throws, completing only one of five attempts for six yards. His bid for a roster spot is fading.
One of the lowest points last season for the New York Jets was their 49-9 loss at the Cincinnati Bengals, a start-to-finish beat down that dropped them to 4-4. They return to Cincinnati on Saturday night, and at least one player is looking for payback.

 "We owe them one," defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson told the Jets' website. "We owe them one big time." He also said, "That was pretty much the only team that dog-walked this defense like that."

Whoa, big fella, it's only the preseason. If the Jets win, they won't be flaunting the revenge card. If anyone does, they will look silly. It's only the second preseason game, a time for evaluating players and building chemistry. Few will remember the result by the end of the summer.

Rex Ryan downplayed the redemption angle, but he admitted he'd like to play well. Call it pride.

"You know, did we get our tails kicked last time we were up there? We absolutely did," he said. "I think the competitor in you -- from a coach, from a player -- you don’t like that. The fact that we have a lot of guys, however many guys are playing, it’s a little different feel. Obviously, preseason guys are trying to win jobs. It’s not just about the team or whatever. I mean, I don’t know if it is more motivation, but you certainly want to account for yourself better than we did the last time."

There's an interesting back story to Jets-Bengals: Ryan confirmed there were serious discussions before training camp about holding joint practices in Cincinnati during the run-up to the game. Joint practices are becoming popular around the league. The concern, of course, is that practicing for a few days against another team will lead to fights.

Ryan doesn't think it would've been an issue, saying the mutual respect between him and Bengals coach Marvin Lewis would've set an upbeat tone on the practice field. Then again, if the Jets have a chip on their shoulder because of last season's blowout, as Richardson's quote suggests, the temperature would've been higher than usual. From what I hear, some of the Jets' veteran leaders lobbied Ryan to pass on the invitation, citing that very reason.

Ryan didn't rule out a joint practice in the future.

"As long as it’s not just Fight Night," he said. "I remember my dad went down in some epic Eagles versus Falcons [practices]. In between all of the fights, they snapped the ball a few times. Those are things you don’t want. "

Jets Camp Report: Day 21

August, 13, 2014
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CORTLAND, N.Y. -- A daily review of the hot topics from New York Jets training camp:
  • The Jets conducted their final open practice in Cortland, a relatively light workout focusing on their next preseason game, Saturday night against the Cincinnati Bengals. The most entertaining part of the day came after practice, when the entire team participated in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. With a big assist from the Cortlandville Fire Department, the team was doused with cold water, much to the delight of a few hundred fans. It was a neat, fan-friendly way to end the three-week run in Cortland. The New England Patriots nominated the Jets for the ALS event and, as Rex Ryan said, "Anytime you get issued a challenge by New England, we're going to accept that challenge."
  • One of the disappoinments to Cortland was that none of the rookie wide receivers separated from the pack. Shaq Evans got hurt, Jalen Saunders was OK but nothing special and Quincy Enunwa dropped too many passes after returning from a hip injury. Saunders will make the team as a punt returner, but the way it looks now, he'll be no better than the fifth or sixth receiver. It's still early, of course. They have three games left, time for Saunders and/or Enunwa to jump out. Ryan is waiting. "Yeah, if somebody jumps out and puts on a Victor Cruz performance, like he did against us in that preseason game (in 2010), I'll definitely sign up for that," Ryan said.
  • Eric Decker sat out again with a quadriceps injury. That makes four out of the last five days on the sideline. It's too early to panic, but it's important that he and Geno Smith spend as much time together as possible, developing chemistry. It looks like Decker will play against the Bengals, but don't expect it to be an extensive outing. In that case, Week 3 of the preseason becomes very important.
  • Time for some quarterback number-crunching. We charted every pass over 14 practices in Cortland (11-on-11 drills only), and it's fair to say that Michael Vick outperformed Smith from a statistical standpoint -- slightly. Unofficially, Smith completed 55 percent of his passes (72-for-130), with eight touchdowns and four interceptions. Obviously, he needs to raise his completion mark over 60 percent. In a West Coast-style offense, that should be the minimum for a quarterback. Vick completed 60 percent (64-for-106), with seven touchdowns and four interceptions. Mind you, some of these stats are subjective, especially touchdowns, so this isn't an exact gauge of the two quarterbacks. It's also worth noting that Smith, who took 81 percent of the first-team reps, had to face the starting defense on a vast majority of his snaps. Clearly, he has work to do, but just remember what happened a year ago on the final day in Cortland -- the infamous "brutal" practice, as dubbed by Ryan.
CORTLAND, N.Y. -- The New York Jets say they're a closer team than a year ago. You could point to several reasons, starting with more continuity on the roster and the addition-by-subtraction departures of Santonio Holmes and Antonio Cromartie. But there's something else and, like a lot of things in the NFL, it involves the quarterback position.

Without a doubt, the Geno Smith-Michael Vick chemistry is better than the Smith-Mark Sanchez dynamic. A year ago, Smith and Sanchez were engaged in a fiercely competitive battle for the starting job. There was no outward animosity between the two, but they weren't the best of buds, either. They were in difference places in their careers, Sanchez desperately trying to reclaim what he lost, Smith trying to validate the organization's faith in him as The New Chosen One.

"It was tense," guard Willie Colon told ESPN.com Wednesday after the Jets' final open practice in Cortland. "It was tense."

[+] EnlargeMichael Vick and Geno Smith
AP PhotoMichael Vick's support of first-string quarterback Geno Smith has alleviated a lot of stress in the Jets' locker room.
That tension was felt throughout the locker room. At times, it created a walking-on-eggshells vibe. Some of the older veterans were loyal to Sanchez, who was often spotted around Cortland with those same players -- some of whom recognized that Smith was being fast-tracked for their friend's old job. It was a weird deal. When the Jets broke camp last summer, they had no idea who'd be behind center. That's not a good thing for a team.

The landscape changed, of course, when Sanchez was injured in the third preseason game. He was the likely opening-day starter, but there would've been a short leash. The organization preferred Smith, who got the job by default. If it weren't for the injury, it had the makings of a full-blown quarterback controversy. As it turned out, Sanchez wasn't around the team as he recovered from shoulder surgery, allowing Smith to endure his growing pains amid peace and quiet.

But it was too quiet; he didn't have anyone to lean on. The Jets signed graybeard David Garrard at midseason to serve as a mentor, but that was a stretch because he was viewed as more of a coach than a peer. That isn't the case with Vick, who has the respect of his teammates and, most importantly, Smith. They have a good rapport. They talk a lot. They talk about football and life. Vick has experienced a lot of life in his 34 years, not all of it good. He tries to share his wisdom with Smith, 11 years his junior.

Their chemistry has rubbed off on those around them. Nothing is more damaging to a locker room than a toxic quarterback situation. The Jets have a nice setup, thanks to Vick. Instead of behaving like Smith's No. 1 threat, he's his No. 1 fan. And others have noticed.

"Mike is a leader and a motivator, and he supports Geno," Colon said. "Geno understands he's the guy. We all believe in him."

On the final day in Cortland, where the Jets trained for three weeks, the theme was team unity. Three years ago, the Jets were torn apart by well-documented dissension. In 2012, the Tim Tebow circus was a major distraction. When Colon signed with the Jets in March 2013, he noticed factions in the locker room.

"We're way, way closer than last year," he said. "When I first got here, the team wasn't close as a whole. From top to bottom, everybody was kind of sticking to themselves. I understand they went through some tough spells, losses and suffering things as a team. It was shocking to me because, in Pittsburgh, we prided ourselves on being a family."

The front office imported team-oriented players in the offseason. There was Chris Johnson, once one of the biggest names in the sport. On Wednesday, Johnson said, "Of course, I'd like to rush for 2,000 yards again, but making the playoffs is more important than 2,000 yards." He hasn't reached the postseason since 2008. There was Eric Decker, who has brought maturity and accountability to the wide receivers room. It's no longer a Holmes-centric room, and that's a good thing.

"I wish him the best," Colon said of Holmes, "but right now our stock as a team and family is going up. And that's what you want."
CORTLAND, N.Y. -- There he goes again.

In what can be described as Rex being Rex, New York Jets coach Rex Ryan predicted a top-five finish in total defense. He said the same thing in 2012, and he said it again last year. It's a rite of summer, just like baseball, barbecues and the beach.

Ryan
"Top five is to be expected, that's what I know," Ryan said Wednesday after the final open practice in Cortland.

"I know we'll have a tremendous defense, there's no doubt. That's one thing that you can say throughout the years. I've been right on that, and I'll be right on this."

There's a little bit of revisionist history going on here. The Jets finished 11th in total defense last season (based on yards allowed), eighth in 2012. Truth be told, they're on a statistical nose dive.

In Ryan's first season, 2009, they finished first in total defense. It was a dominant unit, led by cornerback Darrelle Revis. They slipped to third in 2010 and fifth in 2011. The drop to 11th last year was a surprise, but let's be fair: It was a rebuilt unit, with seven new starters.

"I don't think it'll be there this year," Ryan said. "I think we'll get back to where we're accustomed to being. That's at least top five, but our goals will be set higher than that."

The Jets return every starter in a stout front seven, but the secondary is in a state of flux. Cornerback Dee Milliner is out a few weeks with a severe ankle sprain, former safety Antonio Allen is playing cornerback and rookie safety Calvin Pryor is playing catch-up after missing more than a week with a concussion. Others are injured, too, including projected starting cornerback Dimitri Patterson.

You think the uncertainty will douse Ryan's optimism? Not a chance. Defense is his family business. His father, Buddy, was the coordinator of the celebrated 1985 Chicago Bears. Rex was the defensive-line coach on the 2000 Baltimore Ravens, who hold the record for fewest points allowed in a 16-game season.

"Most Ryans are up there," he said. "I think we have five or six in that category. It just kind of seems that it works that way."

Actually, the Ravens are the only Ryan-coached team in the top 10 for fewest points allowed, but you get the point. The man is confident in what he does.
CORTLAND, N.Y. -- Geno Smith has taken 63 of 75 first-team reps this week at quarterback, so it came as no surprise Tuesday when Rex Ryan acknowledged that Smith will start Saturday night when the New York Jets face the Cincinnati Bengals.

The handwriting on the wall is bold and defined. It's only a matter of time -- maybe days -- before Smith is named the permanent starter. Only an injury or an epic meltdown could derail him. He could lock it up with a strong showing against the Bengals. But Ryan wasn't ready for a coronation, not yet.

"For the regular season? No, no, we're not ready to do that," Ryan said. "We're not ready to do that."

[+] EnlargeGeno Smith, Michael Vick
AP Photo/Bill KostrounRex Ryan acknowledged that Geno Smith will start Saturday against the Bengals.
Ryan was cagey about naming this week's starter, saying the coaches hadn't finalized a decision, but he finally acquiesced. After all, it's the worst-kept secret in Cortland.

Smith is expected to play about a half against the Bengals. If he gets the start the following week against the New York Giants, when the first team traditionally plays about three quarters, it'll be a fait accompli.

But, of course, we've known the quarterback competition isn't really an open competition, as Michael Vick articulated in the spring. The entire training camp has been geared toward Smith, continuing his development and giving him first dibs on the No. 1 job -- even if general manager John Idzik insists it isn't a tilted competition.

Offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg said both quarterbacks have been "outstanding" in camp. They were solid, if not great in last week's victory against the Indianapolis Colts. Smith led the starting unit to a field goal in two series, Vick led it to a touchdown in his only series with the No. 1 group. Vick loved playing behind the top offensive line, and he'd love to do it again, but he doesn't see that as a strong possibility.

"I don't know, it's going to be tough," he said. "This is a week where, I think, the starters are going to play a half. I know what that's about, and I know what it's like and I know the reasoning behind that. So, if not, I have to go out and play with my group and go out there with confidence and try to lead them."

Mornhinweg said it's possible that Vick could play with the starters in Cincinnati. Obviously, it's a delicate balance. They'd like Vick to develop chemistry with the first team -- just in case -- but they don't want to rob Smith of opportunities to gain experience.
CORTLAND, N.Y. -- A few takeaways from Tuesday's New York Jets practice:

Smith
Wet and wild: Some players thrive in poor conditions, some players don't. On a windy and rainy day, with no spectators in the stands (practice was closed because of the weather), quarterback Geno Smith threw the ball exceptionally well. Taking 19 of the 21 first-team reps, Smith completed five of 11 passes, including two drops. He and wide receiver Eric Decker, who returned on a limited basis after missing three days with a quadriceps injury, hooked up for a 10-yard touchdown in a red zone drill.

Vick
Vick
Conversely, Michael Vick (4-for-12, two sacks) struggled mightily. Afterward, he said he couldn't remember the last time he practiced in such windy and rainy conditions. He said, "It was different. It took a while to get used to it. It wasn't one of my better practices, by any means, but I got through it." He was under pressure at times, no doubt contributing to his sloppy day.

It also was a bad day for wide receiver Stephen Hill, who had two drops and a borderline third drop. On the first play of team drills, he beat safety-turned-cornerback Antonio Allen on a deep post, but he dropped what should've been a touchdown. Later, a pass clanged off his hands on a crossing route. The enigmatic Hill got off to a fast start in camp, but he has faded over the past week. Said Rex Ryan: "Obviously, we have to catch the ball better in these conditions."

Overall, Ryan was pleased with the tempo of practice. It was spirited, no doubt, particularly in the red zone drill. He said they "needed a wet day" in camp to get acclimated to adverse weather.

Cumberland
Cumby hurt: Tight end Jeff Cumberland left practice with tightness in his Achilles' tendon, according to Ryan, who described it as a minor injury. It's not his surgically repaired Achilles.

Double-A, Day 2: On his second day as a cornerback, Antonio Allen came back to earth a bit, getting beat by Decker for a touchdown. Decker is a crafty receiver, a tough cover for Allen, who got beat on a quick post. The star of the secondary was Ellis Lankster, who started opposite Allen for the second day in a row. Lankster broke up a pass on back-to-back plays, and it also appears he may have tipped a deep sideline route to Hill.

Allen is expected to start Saturday night against the Cincinnati Bengals, according to Ryan. He wasn't ready to say Lankster will start. It could be Darrin Walls on that side.

No Pryor restraint: Rookie safety Calvin Pryor, known for his hard-hitting style, unloaded on wide receiver Saalim Hakim -- Hakim held on to the ball. Pryor, working his way back after missing more than a week with a concussion, got a couple of first-team reps. He will play extensively against the Bengals, including time with the starters.

Medical report: Running back Chris Ivory (ribs) sat for the fourth straight day, but is expected to play against the Bengals. ... Cornerback Dimitri Patterson (quadrieceps, calf, ankle) sat again. He appears to be getting close, as he was running sprints off to the side. ... Cornerback Ras-I Dowling (groin) is a new injury. He didn't practice. ... Cornerback Jeremy Reeves (knee) was limited to positional drills. ... Obviously, cornerback Dee Milliner (ankle) didn't work. He still hasn't taken an MRI exam, according to Ryan, who said they still don't know whether it's a high- or low-ankle sprain. ... After a rest day, running back Chris Johnson returned to team drills.

Odds and ends: Rookie Tajh Boyd enjoyed his best day of camp, leading the third-team offense on a touchdown drive. He hit tight end Chris Pantale for the touchdown. ... "Sacks" were recorded by defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson, linebacker A.J. Edds and linebacker Garrett McIntyre. ... Rookie wide receiver Quincy Enunwa had a drop.

Jets sign CB LeQuan Lewis

August, 12, 2014
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CORTLAND, N.Y. -- Hurting at cornerback, the New York Jets announced on Tuesday that they added depth by signing the well-traveled LeQuan Lewis.

Lewis was a member of the CFL's Toronto Argonauts. Before that, he spent time with eight different NFL teams, including the Jets. In 2012, he had three brief stints with them, including one week on the practice squad. He has played in eight games since coming out of Arizona State as an undrafted free agent in 2011.

To make room for Lewis, the Jets waived linebacker Tim Fugger, who had been sidelined with a hyperextended knee.
CORTLAND, N.Y. -- Sheldon Richardson's new nickname around the New York Jets is "D-Roy," as in NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year. Cute, right? Not everyone is a D-Roy fan. He believes there are "haters out there," and one of them apparently is loudmouth Warren Sapp, who, for some reason, likes to tweak Richardson at every opportunity.

Richardson noted Sapp's sarcastic response in May, when the NFL Network announced the Jets' defensive tackle as No. 94 on its top-100 list. It came a few months after Sapp trashed him in a newspaper article.

Sapp is picking on the wrong guy, according to Richardson, who vowed to make Sapp and other critics eat their words.

Richardson
"I heard he said, when I made the top 100, 'We'll see how his second year goes,' like I'm supposed to have fall off," Richardson told ESPN.com during a break at training camp. "People are waiting on me to fall off. I only plan on moving up. I have to prove them wrong. I've been doing it my whole life."

Sapp has a curious fascination with Richardson, whom he criticized last January in an interview with the New York Daily News. Basically, Sapp described Richardson as an overrated talent with limited pass-rushing ability, seemingly offended that anyone would compare Richardson to him.

Sapp made it to the Hall of Fame because he was hot stuff as a football player. Now, as an analyst, he's all about hot air.

"I really don't care, man," Richardson said. "He's one of those guys who's going to love me or hate me. He can brag and boast on whoever he wants to boast on and he can hate on whoever he wants to hate on. If he wants to be relevant, he has to pick on somebody else because I'm putting in my work."

Richardson said he harbors no bitterness toward Sapp, but he's not looking to break bread with him, either. He doesn't think there would be any conversation if they crossed paths.

"He probably wouldn't say two words to me, honestly," Richardson said. "Don't know why. I have nothing against him. I never said nothing out of the way to him, I just told people I didn't want to be compared to him. I want people compared to me. That's what I'm striving for, to be in his position, footballwise."

He's off to a terrific start, overcoming challenges from the day he was selected 13th overall in 2013. The Jets received some criticism for the pick because Richardson was deemed a poor fit in their 3-4 defense.

How'd that work out?

"I told them I'd turn the boos into cheers within a year, and I did that," Richardson said.

There are new obstacles in his way.

After finishing with only 3.5 sacks, Richardson wants to improve as a pass-rusher. The Jets believe he'll be more productive because he's comfortable within the system. Line coach Karl Dunbar said the coaches didn't tailor many pass-rushing schemes for Richardson because "he didn't know our defensive scheme last year. A lot of plays weren't called for him to make plays, but he was so athletic that he made plays on his own.

"This year, he has a better grasp of the defense, so he'll be able to make some of the plays he couldn't make last year because he wasn't in position," Dunbar added.

Richardson said he never questioned his role last season. Didn't have to.

"I was scoring touchdowns, man, so I had nothing to complain about," he said with a laugh, referring to his two rushing scores.

Richardson said he has to become a better pass-rusher on play-action, noting that he had trouble disengaging from offensive linemen who latched on to him during the initial run-action. A shoulder injury that hampered him last season has healed, which should make him stronger at the point of attack.

On the flip side, he probably will draw more attention from opponents because of his rookie success. He could be a marked man.

"Bring it on, man," Richardson said. "I ain't worried about that. It's football. Only so many ways you can block a 3-technique, so bring it on. Hell no, I'm not worried at all. I can take it on with the fullest confidence in myself and this defense."

The irony about Sapp's criticism is that, as a rookie in 1995, his stats were inferior to those of Richardson.

"He wasn't really a force, really," Richardson said. "He got better. You can never take that from him. He was a great athlete. I looked up to him."

Vick, Geno discuss Wildcat potential

August, 10, 2014
Aug 10
4:15
PM ET
CORTLAND, N.Y. -- New York Jets coach Rex Ryan hasn’t ruled out the possibility of using quarterback Michael Vick in a situational role, perhaps in the Wildcat.

 Vick got a taste of it with the Philadelphia Eagles in 2009, replacing Donovan McNabb, and he didn't mince words when asked how it worked. “It didn’t last long,” he said Sunday, not sounding particular enthused about the prospect of doing it again.

Vick believes that using a second quarterback requires a delicate balance, as to not disrupt the rhythm of the game.

"Guys get into rhythms, and you want to continue that rhythm,” Vick said after practice. “There’s a time and place for it -- whether it’s third down, whether it’s short yardage, whether it’s the red zone. There’s a time when you can do it and be effective."

Geno Smith sounded more optimistic about using Vick situationally, claiming his rhythm wasn’t disrupted by the use of the Wildcat last season.

"I don’t think so. I never even thought about it to tell you the truth,” Smith said. “I think it helped us. It kept us on schedule many times, and it’s something that we used quite frequently, if I can remember, and I think it was pretty successful.”

Smith said Vick offers a lot as a change-of-pace quarterback.

“That’s the reason why the coaches like these dual-threat quarterbacks and guys who can run and can pass because you give the defense a lot to look at and you can’t just play the run or pass on a certain down and distance,” he said. “You’ve got to play both, and it’s very hard to do that.”

The Jets ran the most Wildcat plays in the NFL last season, using the formation on 38 snaps, per ESPN Stats and Info. However, this could all be a ploy on Ryan’s part, forcing opposing teams to game-plan for the Wildcat.
Cornerback Dee Milliner, one of the keys to the New York Jets' season, was helped off the field on Sunday after suffering an apparent injury to his left ankle.

 Milliner went down hard after getting beat deep by rookie Quincy Enunwa. Milliner was in obvious pain, clutching his ankle. Two trainers helped him off the field, and Milliner put no weight on the ankle.

Milliner, who recently boasted that he's the best cornerback in the NFL, is having an excellent camp. Rookie corner Dexter McDougle also left practice with an undisclosed injury. Dimitri Patterson sat out again with calf and ankle injuries, meaning three of the team's top four corners are hurt.

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