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Greg McElroy

Brooks Bollinger, Kellen Clemens, Brett Ratliff, Erik Ainge, Kevin O'Connell, Greg McElroy ... the list of young quarterbacks that the Jets have brought through to try to retain the backup quarterback over the last ten years is long, but those who have stuck with the team for more than two or three years is rather short.

Current backup Matt Simms might not take snaps most Sundays, but his role during the week as the team's scout team quarterback is helping Simms come along rather quickly. That, along with some mechanics that Jets QB coach David Lee told Simms to work on back in June, wrote JP Pelzman over the weekend for the Bergen Record.

In June, quarterbacks coach David Lee complimented Simms for his "cannon" of a throwing arm, but said he needed to improve his accuracy. Lee has been very impressed with Simms' progress since then.

Tags: David Lee, Greg McElroy, jets, Matt Simms, NYJets, the Jets, Brian Bassett
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Now that preseason has drawn to a close and the roster has been cut down to size, let's see how their draft picks fared in their first major test (after the jump):
  • Muhammad Wilkerson (DT) - Wilkerson has been a solid player, at times playing exceptionally. He's had 5 QB pressures over the course of this preseason. His standout moment, though, came when he got into it with Brandon Jacobs of the Giants. Though drawing a flag away from the ball after the play was dead may not have been the smartest move, it shows that this rookie's got quite a bit of fire in his heart
  • Kenrick Ellis (DL) - Ellis, too, has been a a solid defensive player, though not the breakout passing rusher he was drafted to be. Of course, it's still very early. His best game was against the Texans, in which he had a deflection that led to a turnover and great penetration
  • Bilal Powell (RB) - While he hasn't been explosive, Bilal has been a strong, powerful runner and blocker who, given time, could develop into a reliable back
  • Jeremy Kerley (WR) - Picked with a 5th round choice traded from the Eagles, Kerley seems like he'll pay nice dividends this season. Though he's behind quite a bit of talent on the depth chart, Kerley's role in 2011 will likely be to fill the gap left by Brad Smith. He's dropped a few balls this preseason, but his slipperiness as a returner and his ability to play (and pass) out of the Wildcat make him an exciting player to watch this year
  • Greg McElroy (QB) - Backing up the injured Brunell this preseason, McElroy probably saw more play time than he had expected. When on the field, he showed a great deal of poise, presence, and promise, despite the fact that he was playing against backups. Unfortunately, his thumb injury will likely keep him out for some time, but he will be a more than adequate 3rd-string QB and may develop into something more some day
  • Scotty McKnight (WR) - When the Jets chose McKnight, much was made of his having been Sanchez's childhood friend. Unfortunately, McKnight didn't see much playing time, and, while he caught a touchdown pass from Drew Willy in the final game, he did seem to find a rhythm with the quarterbacks, and has been let go
Overall, I think the Jets made some pretty good decisions in this year's draft. Of their picks, they've only cut one player, and Kerley has shown some flashes of being a breakout star. Add their recent trade for Schlauderaff, the Jets have quite a bit of young talent on the roster going into 2011.
Tags: Bilal Powell, Greg McElroy, Jeremy Kerley, kenrick ellis, Main Page, muhamad wilkerson, News, rookies, Scotty McKnight, Adam Rotter