Bummer in the Summer
“Are you serious? This can’t be happening!” That was the diehards collective cry heard throughout Jets nation as word spread throughout Twitter late yesterday morning that both Dexter McDougle and Dee Milliner were injured at practice yesterday. Injuries hit teams all year long. The shock of two corners going down in the same morning practice of all places was hard to stomach though.
Milliner looked confident and sharp last Thursday against the Colts. Now thanks to Sundays’ high ankle sprain, an injury that often lingers for months, who knows how well the self proclaimed best corner in the NFL will be able to move when he returns. McDougle was anticipating plays left and right and flying up the depth chart at mach speed. A torn ACL now ends his season before it even began. Rookie safety Calvin Pryor has already had a concussion. A glass half empty look at Pryor’s situation contains the fear that the next one, due to his hell bent approach, could be right around the corner.
The Jets will be facing a first half schedule that includes the Packers, Lions, Chargers, Broncos and Patriots. The Bills speedy rookie Sammy Watkins will greet them in week 9 too. The Jets already knew they had to batten down the hatches downfield right from the starting gun before the Sunday massacre went down. Now what? Kyle Wilson?
Backup Jets CB Darrin Walls who many Jet faithful voice have confidence in, may be the next man up (shaky vet Dmitri Patterson is day to day himself right now) and the club reached out to notable free agent vet Asante Samuel soon after the double whammy that took place but here’s the thing: Whatever direction the Jets go in to stabilize the outside, whether it’s from personnel already within Florham or not, it has to happen fast and gel almost instantly if Gang Green wants to make it out of October alive.
The Jets are undoubtedly building a potent front seven. As good as any in the NFL. A depleted and less than serviceable secondary will neuter them in a hurry though. It’s a bummer that the Jets, who had the blueprints of a young secondary coming to fruition, now have to scramble to rearrange it all. It’s still only the summer. We never got to see the kids together at full strength at all. Not even once.
Looking Back At The Colts Tune Up
Here are the gut reaction notes I jotted down during the preseason opener.
– Andrew Luck is toying with our defense. So this is what a poised QB with a few trustworthy weapons looks like.
– Geno Smith is showing some nice footwork in the pocket, but how long will the Jets ignore Michael Vick’s speed and ability to escape the pocket if the offense stalls one series after another during the season?
– Jace Amaro is providing some versatility and welcome speed, lining up inside and outside and making plays from both areas too.
– Demario Davis is reading plays and Dee Milliner looks emotionally ready to try and back up his talk.
– I know it’s only August but Patterson is scaring me right now.
– I hope Quinton Coples figures it out. Because I can’t figure out if he’s on the field or not sometimes.
– Does Stephen Hill have a catch tonight (No. He had zero)?
– Dexter McDougle will start in week one (Scratch that idea now).
– I’m happy for kicker Andrew Furney. Rex gives him a game winning shot on a team he can’t make and he drills it. Classy move Rex. Good for you kid. Hope it helps you find work elsewhere.
Now or Later?
There is no quarterback controversy going on with the Jets. Geno Smith, who’s brief appearance was uneventful but certainly looked comfortable against Indy will start in week one and that’s that. Even though Mike Vick excited many with his scrambles and eventual TD drive against the Colts backups. It won’t matter how either perform in August. The decision has been made already.
What if I told you though that Vick would provide more explosive play potential than Geno Smith in the first half of the year? Thanks to his frenetic style and give the Jets a better chance to exit at around 5-3, than Smith who would benefit in the winter from all the game time but would leave the Jets at no better than 4-4? Now who would you go with? Would you let Vick start until the wheels come off to try and rack up wins or let Geno work through more development time hoping the club is still within striking distance by the time he lands on solid ground?
I wonder how much the Jets are thinking “win now” out of the gates. This is no slight on Geno. Vick’s ability to make plays with his legs could be a much needed engine boost right from day one. Allowing Smith to continue to grow up unimpeded can payoff down the road in 2014. I just hope that the Jets aren’t too far back in the standings for it to matter.
– Did you catch the press conference spoof with Rex Ryan reversing roles and asking reporter Rich Cimini questions? Rex has been a great New York City personality since day one. It’s amazing how refined his persona has become along the way too. He’s not the brash “Goddamn Snack” Rex anymore but he’s still found a way to remain lively and have fun. In less of a big loud frat boy way. Interesting.
– The injuries the Jets have had to their secondary make me wish that the Jets could schedule more preseason games and get rid of all of these practices.
– NO. That’s all I have to say to the idea of any Mike Vick “Wildcat” package. Start him or sit him. Don’t create a drama because trust me, he ain’t no Tebow. Once he breaks out and scrambles for a huge gain, the MetLife crowd will be split down the middle. Talk about using it though. Go right ahead. Make teams waste a little prep time considering the possibility.
If you’re relying on a gadget to help you over speed bumps though, what does that say about your starter?