Jets Training Camp: Five Things We Learned In Cortland

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A few highlights from this morning -

  • The defense dominated practice. Mark Sanchez struggled, going 5/11 with an INT, which was picked off by David Harris. Jason Taylor also swatted a pass up in the air and into the arms of D’Brickashaw Ferguson.
  • Nick Folk went 5/5 today, including making a 56 yarder.
  • Mark Brunell and Laveranues Coles hooked up 3 times in the two minute drill for the second offense. When is the last time you hear about David Clowney doing anything?
  • Jim Leonhard recorded a sack. Kyle Wilson and Dwight Lowery both had passes defensed against the first offense.
  • Sanchez and Braylon Edwards hooked up for a 55 yard bomb down the sideline.
  • Donovan Warren didn’t practice today, due to a head injury.
  • Rookie corner Brian Jackson was tied to the goalpost after practice and had two buckets of Gatorade dumped on him. The reason? Apparently, he complained to defensive backs coach Dennis Thurman about how he was being used in the defense.
  • Jamaal Westerman, Kenwin Cummings, and Matt Kroul all sat out practice as a reward for winning an “Iron Jet” award this off-season.
  • Rookie show and King Ugly contest in Jets camp tonight.
  • Expect to see plenty of Mark Brunell and Laveranues Coles on Saturday night.

Five Things We Learned In Cortland

After tonight’s practice the Jets will be packing it up and heading out of Cortland, New York. Next week they will have practices at their Florham Park facility and out at Hofstra.

Photobucket1. Tale of Two Rookie Running Backs – The Jets selected halfback Joe McKnight in the fourth round and fullback John Conner in the fifth round of this year’s NFL Draft. Most people assumed McKnight would move into a Leon Washington type role on the team, while Conner spent a year learning behind Tony Richardson. Yet, both players have made a distinctly different impression so far in training camp. Conner has quickly become a favorite of the coaching staff because of his physicality and now appears likely to be the opening day starter at fullback. McKnight has disappointed the coaching staff with his hesitancy to run inside and his attitude. If the Jets are going by on-field production, McKnight doesn’t deserve to be on the active roster as of right now.

2. The Underdog – Most people, including myself, believed Vladimir Ducasse would end up being the starting left guard on opening day. Shame on me for sleeping on Matt Slauson who has built a comfortable lead over Ducasse in the battle to replace Alan Faneca. The coaches love how physical Slauson has been playing and he obviously already had a jump on knowing the offense. I will be interested to see if the Jets begin grooming Ducasse to replace Damien Woody at right tackle, if he doesn’t end up beating out Slauson.

3. Thumbs Up On The Kyle Wilson Selection - I guess there could be some propaganda behind the coaching staff hyping up Kyle Wilson but every report out of camp is that he looks like a seasoned veteran out there. Most importantly, he is demonstrating a strong knowledge of the defense and is very coachable. Could you imagine the luxury of having him in the nickel role, with Darrelle Revis and Antonio Cromartie in front of him? We have also learned that Dwight Lowery hasn’t shaken off the AFC Championship Game yet and that Drew Coleman still can’t cover anybody.

4. Good RecoveriesKris Jenkins appears to be his old self after season ending ACL surgery last year, which is obviously a major boost to the Jets defense. Mark Sanchez hasn’t shown any signs of being slowed down by his off-season surgery either. I certainly hope Sanchez can keep building on his performance against the Giants, where outside of an early interception, he demonstrated accuracy, the ability to spread the ball around, and complete control of the offense.

5. Good Camp/Bad Camp –

  • Good – Antonio Cromartie, Braylon Edwards, LaDainian Tomlinson, Kyle Wilson, John Conner, Nick Folk, Kenwin Cummings, Jeff Cumberland, Matt Slauson, Dustin Keller, Santonio Holmes, Aundrae Allison, Danny Woodhead, Vernon Gholston
  • Bad – Dwight Lowery, Marquice Cole, Drew Coleman, Joe McKnight, David Clowney, Kevin O’Connell, Donovan Warren, Vlad Ducasse, Chauncey Washington
  • http://nyjroadtothesuperbowl.tumblr.com/ Matt Loonam

    How do you think Sanchez will do this year? He has been playing against the best defense in the league but he really needs to step up this season.

    I wrote a post this morning pointing out that he needs to start looking like a pro and now wearing his emotions on his face so much.

  • Shane L.

    Matt – The good news is he can’t possibly be worse than last year. With a year of system experience under his belt, and the additions of Holmes, Coles, and LT, plus a full offseason working with Braylon, and the reliable J-Co and Keller, there’s no reason why he can’t at least even out his TD-INT ratio.

    I’d predict he’ll finish around 3000 yards, with 18-20 TDs and 14-16 INT.

  • simplysimon2

    Sanchez is still a child. He’s more high school sophomore than even a college one with his mocking of the way another guy walks on HBO, so shallow and not deserving of respect from his teammates. He needs to grow up and be a man not an ingratiating clown if he wants to lead this team.

    Joe Willie might have “worked hard” off the field but he was a man’s man on the field and looked after his guys. Before the AFL championship game, I almost walked into a receiver’s practice route but Joe pulled me out of the way, not to protect me but to protect his guy, totally present to every nuance on the field. That’s where Mark’s focus needs to be.

  • Shane L.

    Simon I think you’re taking things way too seriously. That’s the old stuffy mentality the Jets were trying to get away from when they hired Rex. You think the guys don’t ever joke around with each other on other teams? If there were cameras in any other camp in the league you’d prob see a lot of the same stuff.

    Sanchez does need to get away from the sulking after a bad showing but other than that it seems he’s made some great strides from last year, especially in the leadership department by taking his WRs out west for extra work.

  • TIBETAN SOCCER TEAM

    His peers and coaches arent complaining…thats what counts…keep the PC stuff where it belongs…and fans only want a SB…otherwise they dont care

  • Joe Caporoso

    I ike the way Sanchez approaches the game and think he has the right mentality to be successful at this level. I don’t know if he will be a Pro-Bowler anytime soon but he will be a winner in this league…he showed that in the playoffs last year.

  • http://www.ford-forums.com/members/-mustang-guy997.html mustang lover

    Great site! much appreciated.

    Sent from my iPhone 4G