This analysis is based on watching and re-watching TV footage. As such, it is not always possible to accurately determine everything that was going on. However, every effort has been made to ensure that the information below is as complete and correct as possible.

Coming up after the jump, an analysis of yesterday’s loss to the Eagles, including a focus on the struggles of the offensive line, against the run and in the secondary. Oh, and maybe a little bit of ranting, because I was feeling left out. Remember, if you want me to look into anything in particular or go into more detail, leave a comment and I’ll include it in BGA Extra, which will follow in a few days.

It’s an all-too familiar pattern. The Jets fall behind, perhaps due to an unfortunate bounce or an individual error, then they look to get back into the game only for a similar play to put them in an even bigger hole. They have enough opportunistic players on the team that they might make a few plays to make you think they’ve got a chance to get back into it, but with no margin of error remaining, the Jets are too inconsistent to climb back into it without making another mistake that completely kills any momentum they’ve built.

In the Rex Ryan era these “spiral out of control” games have happened four times against New England, earlier this year against the Ravens and in the postseason against the Steelers last year, which was the closest they came to completing the comeback. Clearly, this team lacks the firepower to overcome a deficit against teams with a lot of talent. That doesn’t mean they’re incapable of beating such teams, but they need to keep the game close in the early stages and establish themselves on both sides of the ball. Against San Diego, the Jets fell into a hole after their first possession ended with a freak touchdown on a fumble return for the Chargers and almost didn’t recover. In a similar situation, the Eagles never looked likely to surrender their early lead, which grew to 28 in the second quarter, as the Jets made more mistakes and the Eagles showed that – although their record is comparable to the Chargers – they have more talent and are not an easy team to knock off at home.

Essentially, the Jets had some bad luck/mistakes early on, fell behind and presumably let that take them out of their intended gameplan. They ended up looking like a team without a plan and that was reflected on the scoreboard.

This is a particularly difficult game to grade, because if someone made a couple of early mistakes as the Jets fell behind, but then made a handful of impact plays later on, what’s the use in that? Similarly, if a player was playing well early but then started playing poorly when the game got out of hand, isn't that even worse? As usual, I looked at every play to see who did their job and who didn’t - you can make up your own minds what to make of it all.

Quarterback

Considering how heavily the Jets lost this game, their quarterback didn’t have as much of a negative impact as you might expect. An early interception wasn’t really his fault, as his pass went through Santonio Holmes’ hands and he did make a few pretty nice throws.

His biggest mistake came on third and two, as the Jets looked to run the ball, but Sanchez got his wires crossed and expected LaDainian Tomlinson to be going to the right. He instead had to tuck and run, and then compounded his error by losing a fumble as he tried in vain to extend the ball past the first down marker. Later on, he had a pass intercepted which he never should have thrown – the defensive player was sitting on the quick slant to Holmes and the ball bounced straight up into the air.

Sanchez was also at fault on one of the times he was sacked, because he easily could have dumped the ball off to a wide open Tomlinson, who likely would have got down inside the five and perhaps would have scored. Instead, he hesitated and went down.

His job wasn’t made any easier by the amount of pressure he was under, although there were times when the protection held up well and he still couldn’t find anyone.

The concern now is that, even if by some miracle, the Jets sort out their pass protection issues before they face the formidable Giants’ front on Sunday, the chances are that Sanchez will still play poorly because the residual effect from those games where he's had to run for his life has tended to be at least a one-week hangover where he seems to lack confidence and misses too many throws because his timing is off.

He did complete a long bomb to Dustin Keller and made two great throws on his touchdown passes, but elite quarterbacks will march their team down the field to get them back in the game when the other team goes up big, so the size of the gap between Sanchez and those elite guys is readily apparent to everyone.

Even allowing for the pressure he was under, Sanchez’s accuracy on short throws could have been better this week. The Jets have used the screen to good effect in recent weeks, but the Eagles were well-prepared for it. Against the 9-wide style of defense, a screen pass can be a boom or bust play because there are more potential tacklers spread across the field, but – if you do get past the first wave – you can break into the open field. On Sunday, the Jets busted almost every time as each screen they set up looked set to go for big yardage, only for the one defender in the area to avoid being blocked and get to the receiver to blow it up. The one on the first drive should have been a 20-yard gain, but with three blockers out ahead of him, Tomlinson was hit in the backfield as soon as he caught the ball. Both Matt Slauson and Nick Mangold could have done a better job of blocking that guy and then the play would have been successful, but their job wasn’t made any easier by Sanchez’s ill-timed pass that wasn’t ideally placed. As we feared following the last two games, without the screen pass, the Jets passing attack is pretty one-dimensional.

Offensive Line

After two consecutive solid performances against teams with decent pass rush ability, hopes were high that the Jets’ offensive line would be able to handle the Eagles front seven. Early signs were even positive, as Shonn Greene broke a couple of nice runs on the Jets first drive. Unfortunately, it all went downhill from there.

All eyes were on the inconsistent Wayne Hunter, as Jason Babin and Juqua Parker gave him fits all game. However, it’s very difficult to blame Hunter for the loss, because although he gave up an early sack to Babin, that was the only pressure he gave up until after the Jets were 28-0 down.

It was in the third quarter where Hunter really struggled, with another sack occurring as he and Brandon Moore each double teamed the same guy and Babin stunted around the outside. In that quarter, Hunter was beaten several times, but in the rest of the game, he managed to stay in front of his man almost all the time. Assuming the Jets made some adjustments at halftime, it seems likely that these weren’t something Hunter was adequately prepared for and it hurt their chances of getting back into the game.

After last week, where his pass protection was good, but his run blocking was poor, this week it was the other way around. He made a couple of decent blocks in the running game and only had one block that noticeably he failed to sustain. However, I had him down responsible for two sacks and five or six pressures and he compounded that with two false starts, even if the Jets did protest vehemently against one of them.

Hunter wasn’t alone in having problems in pass protection. Slauson and D’Brickashaw Ferguson were also caught out by a Babin stunt that led to a sack and Moore – who hadn’t given up a sack or a QB hit ALL season – got beaten for a sack on the play where Sanchez should have dumped it off to Tomlinson. The three of them also gave up four pressures between them.

Nick Mangold did not appear to be responsible for any of the pressure, although he might admit to part of the blame on those plays where there were missed assignments by his linemates, for not communicating the linecalls well enough. It wasn’t the same kind of dominating performance we’ve come to expect from Mangold, who had two missed blocks on screen passes and not as many punishing run blocks as had been the case in recent games, although that’s not to say that he didn’t have some good ones.

Moore got off to a great start, but seemed to struggle more and more as the game went on. I don’t know if his hip was bothering him, they made him take on tougher assignments or he just got frustrated and stopped trying, but it was a disappointing way to end what started out looking like a potentially dominant display.

Slauson also had a good start, making a couple of great pulling blocks to spring early runs. However, he also struggled as the game started to slip away from the Jets, missing some blocks on screen plays, false starting once and getting driven into the backfield on one play, so the runner had nowhere to go. He did finish with some decent blocks at the end, including one where he pulled and pancaked a linebacker, but it’s very difficult to assess such an uneven performance.

Ferguson did well to limit the amount of pressure he surrendered, but didn’t have any impact in the running game, except for one decent second level block. It wasn’t a bad performance, but expectations for Ferguson are so high, an average performance from him is almost as damaging as a poor performance from the likes of Hunter or Slauson, which you might half-expect and be prepared for.

As much as Hunter struggled, he didn’t look as bad as Vladimir Ducasse this week. I’ve been singing Ducasse’s praises recently as the Jets have been building his role and giving him some straightforward assignments and he’s been responding with largely error free performances. Unfortunately, this week was another setback. Not only was he inexcusably beaten inside in pass protection and called for a hold, but he also got beaten inside on two running plays, enabling his man to stuff each run up the middle. When you’re only on the field for a handful of plays, you shouldn’t be making the same mistake three times. The Jets were already trailing heavily when he made these mistakes, so you can’t pin the loss on him, but it was disappointing to see all his recent progress evaporate as if it never happened.

Since the Eagles got an extended look at Ducasse and Hunter in the Bollinger Bowl, I wonder if they identified some specific weaknesses in that seemingly-meaningless game and told their starters to attack these.

Running Backs

When Shonn Greene gained 33 yards on four carries, after the Jets had forced the Eagles to punt on their first possession, things were looking promising for the Jets. Unfortunately, they opted to go away from the running game when they fell so far behind. In fact, it’s not certain that he would have continued this early success – after all, his 14 carries from that point onwards netted him only 40 yards, which is less than three per carry.

Greene had a couple of nice runs, but also got beaten for a pressure and dropped an easy first down over the middle. That was the kind of mistake that only seems to happen in these “everything that can go wrong does go wrong” games.

Tomlinson had one half-decent run, but didn’t have much success with his four catches. On the play where he and Sanchez got their wires crossed, it did look like the draw play would have given him a good chance of a first down.

Joe McKnight saw some action late in the game, gaining 27 yards on the only successful screen pass of the day, thrown by Mark Brunell (who I didn’t mention in the quarterbacks section, but he misfired horribly on his other two pass attempts). McKnight apparently injured his shoulder, so he may be done for the year, although we await confirmation of his status.

As for John Conner, he made a nice gain on a FB dive play, but his blocking was inconsistent once again, although he did have a couple of good ones.

Receivers

With a fumble that was returned for a touchdown and a dropped pass in the redzone that ended up being intercepted, Santonio Holmes – having won two of the last three games for the Jets – pretty much lost them this one. Though those two plays alone weren’t insurmountable, they both came at the worst possible time and put the Jets in a hole that they were always battling to climb out of.

He did catch four passes, including a touchdown, but even that left a sour taste in the mouth, after his mindblowingly senseless celebration penalty with the Jets down 28-9 (although it didn’t actually hurt the Jets in the end). Holmes is now tied for the Jets lead in touchdowns despite the tight coverage he often faces which seems to have curtailed his statistical production. That’s a sign of his talents, but he’s got a long way to go if anyone’s going to discuss him as a potential hall-of-famer (his stated goal for his career in the offseason) with a straight face.

Plaxico Burress drew a pass interference flag and had a beautiful diving catch for a meaningless late score. That catch? His only one in the last ten quarters. He’s actually been pretty good value for money this year, but he needs to finish strong if any team is going to give him a decent contract next season.

Jeremy Kerley had a couple of nice first downs, but Patrick Turner did not record a catch.

Defensive Line

For once, the Jets didn’t dominate upfront on the defensive side of the ball, as the shifty LeSean McCoy was able to break several runs and Mike Vick did some damage with his legs too. Between them, the Eagles running backs accounted for exactly five yards per carry with McCoy getting in the end zone three times. How did they do it?

On the face of it, Muhammed Wilkerson showed more in this game than any other, with several impact plays. He had a sack, a pressure, a tackle for a loss, a tackle for no gain and a play that he strung out to the sideline well for no gain. Unfortunately, he also had more negative plays than he had in any other game, as he kept getting caught inside or driven out of the play, missed two bad tackles and jumped offsides. He lost contain on Vick’s touchdown and missed a tackle on McCoy's longest one. It definitely seemed like the Eagles were targeting him and though he responded well a couple of times, they ultimately saw plenty of success in doing this.

It was surprising to see the Jets run defense struggling even though Mike DeVito returned to the line-up. There may have been some lingering effects from his recent knee injury, as evidenced by how easily he was blown off the line on McCoy’s second quarter touchdown. He did stuff one run, forced a fumble and had one pressure, but he didn’t otherwise have a major impact.

Sione Pouha has been superb in recent weeks. This week, he didn’t have the same impact in the running game, but it might have been the best pass rushing performance he’s had all year. He had a couple of pocket-collapsing bullrushes and flushed Vick from the pocket three times.

Marcus Dixon had a sack and a hit and stuffed one run, but it was all in garbage time. He was also called for a roughing the passer penalty, although it seemed to be harsh. Ropati Pitoitua got good penetration on one play, but was blocked out of at least three running plays. He did have one good bullrush, but Vick was able to get the pass away before the pocket collapsed completely.

Linebackers

Over the last few weeks, Calvin Pace has been doing a great job of stopping runs getting to the outside. You’ll often see him blocked by a tackle or tight end on the edge and perhaps assume he’s been blocked out of the play, but actually he is working hard to get upfield and force the runner to cut back. Unfortunately, he had a couple of slip-ups on Sunday. He was blocked to the ground on one play, letting the runner get to the edge and tried to get off his block to make a play and ended up getting caught on the inside on another play. Pace was also blown up and driven back into the endzone on one of McCoy’s touchdowns and had a missed tackle. He did stuff a couple of runs early on and got a couple of pressures, although one of these saw him flagged for roughing.

Perhaps the best job all day of keeping contain was by Jamaal Westerman, which is a positive sign. Westerman not only maintained outside leverage, but also drove his man upfield and forced the runner to cut back inside where he was stuffed. If Westerman could master this role, they might have more of a pass rushing threat on the field when they’re in their base defense without sacrificing anything in the running game. Westerman also had a couple of pressures and a forced fumble on special teams, but missed a tackle and had a penalty on special teams too.

Speaking of the importance of maintaining contain, a good example happened on McCoy’s long touchdown run in the fourth quarter involving Bart Scott. Scott attacked the hole as McCoy looked set to run off left guard, but he did it – I’m sure deliberately – by attacking his outside shoulder so that he couldn’t bounce it to the outside. McCoy slipped off Scott’s arm tackle but was forced to cut to the inside, where Wilkerson should have tackled him in the backfield. Unfortunately, Wilkerson missed the tackle and McCoy was able to reverse his field and get to the outside on the right side instead. While Scott will undoubtedly get graded down for this particular play, because he didn’t secure or at least slow down the runner well enough, I believe the fact that he attacked the runner in such a way that he could only escape to the inside where there was help is part of his assignment, but it’s an interesting example of discipline and gap control nevertheless.

Other than that – and a big completion to Celek where he might have had support over the top if Kyle Wilson didn’t slip over – Scott had a solid enough performance, with a sack, a tackle for a short gain and a key assist at the goal line, but I still feel the Jets are diluting his influence by getting him to play disciplined gap control rather than attacking the line of scrimmage with what could almost be described as recklessness, even though he does carry out both roles well.

Much like the situation with Wilkerson, David Harris made several impact plays, but was also involved with a lot of negative plays to overshadow his positive contribution. Harris had an interception, a pressure, a tackle for no gain and a tackle for a loss, but overpursued on one of McCoy’s touchdowns, gave up a couple of big pass plays, missed a tackle in the hole and got driven out of a play at the second level.

Aaron Maybin, for once, was unable to generate any pressure in pass rushing situations. Garrett McIntyre saw some action in garbage time and missed another tackle. Josh Mauga also saw action late.

Defensive Backs

As usual, we’ll start with Darrelle Revis, but it was a pretty inconsequential performance from the PFG one. Revis gave up three big catches, although one was negated by a penalty and only one was a first down on a leaping catch by DeSean Jackson. He was better than Antonio Cromartie though. Cromartie was burned for a touchdown and gave up two other big plays. He also didn’t do a very job of downfield tackling on McCoy’s long touchdown. At least he didn’t fumble a return, I guess, although I can’t be alone in expecting it every time he gets tackled.

With Jim Leonhard out, there were only two obvious coverage breakdowns. The first was the long completion to Celek where Bart Scott ran with him across the field and Wilson slipped downfield and was late getting over. I’d need to see the coaches film to see if Wilson had responsibility for him there, or if he just reacted to the play and came off his man. The other saw Celek make a huge gain with Eric Smith chasing after him. On this play, Smith was covering a slot receiver, playing off him, and David Harris was covering Celek. Harris backpedalled and Celek broke off his route as the slot receiver ran an out pattern. Harris and Smith both seemed to react to the receiver and Celek – either by design or by craftily reading the situation – actually ran a stop and go/post route. Harris was in no man's land with his momentum carrying him in the other direction as Celek re-accelerated. However, Smith was closer to the sideline, so he had a long way to go to make up ground on Celek. In these situations, it’s impossible to know who was at fault, although one report suggested Smith was chewed out by Rex immediately afterwards, so it seems likely he either blew his assignment or his call of the coverage.

Other than that, neither safety made any mistakes and there were no obvious breakdowns. Smith had five tackles – for once not on players he’d given up first down catches to. Pool broke up a pass, recovered a fumble and had a pressure, so hopefully his comfort level is growing and he will continue to make plays like these.

The bigger concern is that the Eagles (per Eric Smith) apparently knew all of the Jets’ calls and what they were running defensively. It’s no wonder they looked so impressive moving the ball. Maybe the Jets would have been able to change things up with Leonhard in there, but their limited preparation time clearly hurt them in that regard. They probably already had to simplify things, so kudos to the Eagles for being ready, I guess.

The one saving grace if that is true is that the last team they’ll want to go sharing that information will be the Giants.

Kyle Wilson was beaten for another big gain by Celek and also missed a tackle as he tried to sack Vick, letting him get away for a positive gain. He did have two other pressures. Donald Strickland was in good position on a downfield throw and made a good open field tackle in the flat.

In garbage time, Tracy Wilson had a nice hit and also made a good special teams tackle, although he missed another two. Isaiah Trufant came on for one play and was embarrassingly trampled over by the receiver for an easy first down. It’s easy to see where his weakness lies – he apparently just isn’t big enough to play in the NFL.

Special Teams

The special teams had a positive performance this week. Nick Folk hit both of his field goals and TJ Conley landed two of his six punts inside the 20, although he did struggle to get the Jets out from under their own goalposts in the third quarter.

There were a couple of pretty good returns from McKnight, Cromartie and Kerley and some good tackles from the likes of Mauga and Tracy Wilson, although there were also a few missed tackles, including one from debutant Gerald Alexander. Ellis Lankster did a good job of getting downfield and was rewarded with two fumble recoveries.

Conclusions

It goes without saying – the Jets are broken right now.

Can they be fixed? It doesn’t look likely, but I have a hard time accepting that the game would have turned out anything like it did if the Jets didn’t have some big plays go against them early to put them in a hole. With an offense that thrives on balance and breaking tendencies and a defense that likes to mix things up and set traps, this team is not built to fall behind and change things on the fly…and that’s a problem.

How can you avoid falling behind early on in games? A conservative approach would seem to make sense, but the game didn’t spiral out of control because they didn’t adopt such an approach on Sunday.

Player focus remains a major concern and an area which the coaching staff should think long and hard about how they can go about making improvements in. We’ve seen the team come out flat to start games or fall apart when they are trailing far too often this season, when that’s something that should happen less and less as the front office are adding those players hand-picked to excel at the coaches' schemes.

Last time Jim Leonhard was lost for the season, the Jets gave up 45 points, but we were led to believe that wouldn’t happen this time, because the secondary had learned to cope last year and they had a week to prepare instead of just a few days. If the reason the defense played so shoddily can be attributed to Leonhard’s injury, that’s still not an acceptable excuse. They should have people ready to fill in for each other at a moment’s notice. You only need look at Pittsburgh, where they hardly give any playing time to their backups, but as soon as a starter goes down, the next man up knows his role and seems to perform well.

I imagine the Jets were forced to take some short cuts due to the truncated off-season program, but they still should have themselves prepared for any eventuality, whether that be shutting down a high-powered offense with a backup in your secondary and somebody different making the calls back there, or simply having a plan for when you’re way behind and need to get back in the game.

A couple of weeks ago, I said I was convinced 10-6 would be good enough to get a wild card spot in the AFC, but that I wasn’t sure that the (then 6-5) Jets would be able to get to 10-6. With two weeks to go, it’s still on the cards, with their next opponent also struggling. Whether they can feel good about their chances of making any noise if they do make it is another matter.

Remember, if there's anything else you'd like me to comment upon or go into more detail about, let me have your suggestions in the comments and I'll respond in BGA Extra later in the week.
Tags: BGA, Main Page, Bent Double

GEICO SportsNite: Jets 00:01:07
Jets general manager Mike Maccagnan discusses the team's strategy for its No. 3 overall pick with the draft just a few days away.

New York Jets' Jamal Adams (33) and Los Angeles Chargers' Sean McGrath (84) fight for control of the ball during the second half of an NFL football game Sunday, Dec. 24, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun) (Bill Kostroun/AP)
New York Jets' Jamal Adams (33) and Los Angeles Chargers' Sean McGrath (84) fight for control of the ball during the second half of an NFL football game Sunday, Dec. 24, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun) (Bill Kostroun/AP)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

The Jets own the third pick in this year's draft, their highest since 1996. How have they drafted in the first round over the past five years?

2017: Safety Jamal Adams, No. 6

It's too early to tell how Adams' career will pan out, but the signs so far have been promising. He started every game in his rookie year as the Jets' secondary definitely played better than it had in 2016. On the field, Adams had his ups and downs, but he showed flashes of brilliance in a versatile role. Off the field, he's played a big part in the ongoing culture change that has galvanized the team and has also been a useful tool in player recruitment.

Tags: Calvin Pryor, Damon Harrison, Darron Lee, Dee Milliner, Jamal Adams, Leonard Williams, Muhammad Wilkerson, Quinton Coples, Sheldon Richardson
Read More

Nov 18, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Southern California Trojans quarterback Sam Darnold (right) and UCLA Bruins quarterback Josh Rosen (3) shake hands after their game at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports (Kelvin Kuo)
Nov 18, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Southern California Trojans quarterback Sam Darnold (right) and UCLA Bruins quarterback Josh Rosen (3) shake hands after their game at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports (Kelvin Kuo)

It will be an absolute stunner if the Jets don't take a quarterback after trading up to No. 3 in the NFL Draft, which takes place on Thursday night in Dallas.

So, who will it be?

At least two out of the group of Baker Mayfield, Sam Darnold, Josh Rosen, and Josh Allen will be available for the Jets. 

Read More

Wyoming quarterback Josh Allen runs a drill at the NFL football scouting combine in Indianapolis, Saturday, March 3, 2018. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy) (Michael Conroy/AP)
Wyoming quarterback Josh Allen runs a drill at the NFL football scouting combine in Indianapolis, Saturday, March 3, 2018. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy) (Michael Conroy/AP)

The Browns' choices for their No. 1 pick seem to have come down to two choices just three days away from the NFL Draft: Sam Darnold or Josh Allen?

Yes, there is always the prospect of the Browns going with RB Saquon Barkley with their first overall selection, knowing they have the No. 4 pick later on. However, experts including SI's Peter King see Cleveland getting their quarterback first before addressing anywhere else. 

Recently, rumblings about Allen going No. 1 have gained some steam. But King's most trusted source says Allen is too much of a risk, and the Browns don't want to get another quarterback pick wrong.

Read More

 (Kevin Jairaj)
(Kevin Jairaj)

Broadway Joe loves Broadway Baker. Or at least that's what could be Baker Mayfield's nickname if the Jets were to select him with their No. 3 overall pick. 

Hall of Famer and former Jets QB Joe Namath loves what he has seen from Mayfield over the years of watching him play. He recently watched the Georgia-Oklahoma College Football Playoff matchup at the Rose Bowl on New Year's Eve, and after his daughter asked if he had seen anything like the back-and-forth bout, he responded saying he wouldn't want to be going up against Mayfield...


Everything you need to know about the Jets and No. 3 >> Read more

Vacc's Mini Mock Draft has Jets tabbing Mayfield >> Read more

Read More

 (Dennis Wierzbicki)
(Dennis Wierzbicki)

The Jets have not stopped looking for help on their defensive line as they hosted numerous free-agent linemen on Monday. 

Former Bears DT Lamarr Houston and former Patriots DT Chris Jones were among those looking to impress the Jets. Houston split time with the Bears and Texans last season, totaling five sacks over 10 games. A former second-round pick by the Raiders back in 2010, Houston is entering his ninth season in the NFL this year. 

Jones played for the division-rival Patriots in 2013 and 2014, where he finished with nine sacks and 79 tackles over 28 career games. He most recently played for the 49ers in 2016, where he had 17 tackles over six games. He did not play for an NFL squad in 2017. 

Read More

New York Jets defensive end Leonard Williams on the sidelines during the third quarter against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets defensive end Leonard Williams on the sidelines during the third quarter against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)

The Jets have officially picked up DL Leonard Williams' fifth-year option, keeping Williams with the team through 2019 at least. 

Williams, 23, the sixth overall pick of the 2015 NFL Draft, will make $14.2 million in 2019, assuming he's considered a defensive end. If they try to say he's a defensive tackle, the contract will be $11.4 million, according to SNY's Ralph Vacchiano. The contract becomes fully guaranteed next March.

"It's definitely time to step up and take it to the next level," Williams said last week via Vacchiano. "That comes with a lot. It's just not my play on the field. It comes with my leadership, how I approach work, how much time I'm putting in outside of the mandatory hours into my craft, into my game."

Tags: Leonard Williams
Read More

Who will the Jets select #3? 00:05:13
SNY NFL Insider Ralph Vacchiano and SNY NFL Draft Expert Rich Cirminiello discuss who the Jets will select third overall in the NFL Draft.

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

In less than a week, Jets GM Mike Maccagnan will make the most important draft pick of his tenure with the team, the one that surely will define his legacy.

No pressure, right?

Tags: Eli Manning, Josh McCown, Ralph Vacchiano
Read More

Tulane Green Wave cornerback Parry Nickerson returns his interception against the Connecticut Huskies in the second quarter at Rentschler Field. (David Butler II/USA TODAY Sports)
Tulane Green Wave cornerback Parry Nickerson returns his interception against the Connecticut Huskies in the second quarter at Rentschler Field. (David Butler II/USA TODAY Sports)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

Over the last few weeks, we looked at some of the players who have been invited to attend an official pre-draft visit with the Jets. With the visits ending earlier this week, let's take a final look at a selection of the players New York brought in.

Parry Nickerson, CB, Tulane

Nickerson is a four-year starter who was a constant standout on the Tulane defense. During his career, he recorded 16 interceptions, broke up another 31 passes and scored two defensive touchdowns. He turned heads at the scouting combine when he ran a 4.32 40-yard dash.

Read More

Jonas Schwartz and Willie Colon are ready to open their present that is the #3 pick in the NFL Draft. The guys discuss the possibility of the Jets trading up, yet again, and the crazy idea of selecting a non-QB (can someone say Bradley Chubb) with the 3rd overall selection. Plus, former NFL QB Dan Orlovsky calls in to give his insight into the top four quarterbacks.

Click below to listen

Read More

 (Tim Fuller)
(Tim Fuller)

The Jets will open the 2018 season in Detroit against the Lions on Monday night football, and finish things in Week 17 on the road against the Patriots.

Their entire 2018 schedule has been confirmed by SNY's Ralph Vacchiano, and is below...

Read More

Jan 1, 2018; Pasadena, CA, USA; Oklahoma Sooners quarterback Baker Mayfield (6) passes against the Georgia Bulldogs in the first quarter in the 2018 Rose Bowl college football playoff semifinal game at Rose Bowl Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports (Kirby Lee)
Jan 1, 2018; Pasadena, CA, USA; Oklahoma Sooners quarterback Baker Mayfield (6) passes against the Georgia Bulldogs in the first quarter in the 2018 Rose Bowl college football playoff semifinal game at Rose Bowl Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports (Kirby Lee)

Former QB Dan Orlovsky thinks the Jets are targeting Oklahoma QB Baker Mayfield with the No. 3 pick in the Draft, and one of the reasons is very specific.

Orlovsky, who played under Kyle Shanahan, noted that Jets OC Jeremy Bates is from the Mike Shanahan coaching tree. And that one of the traits Shanahan loved about John Elway is that he would screw his back foot into the ground when he threw -- adding that Bates loves that trait in quarterbacks as well. 

"There's one guy in the Draft who has that trait," Orlovsky said earlier this week on SNY's Jet Stream podcast. "And it's Baker Mayfield. He does the same thing when he throws. And I just think that those coaches fall in love with traits of guys that remind them of players that they had success with in the past. I think that they're looking at Baker Mayfield and going 'that's our guy.'"

Read More

Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield drops back to pass against Ohio State during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 9, 2017, in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete) (Jay LaPrete/AP)
Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield drops back to pass against Ohio State during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 9, 2017, in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete) (Jay LaPrete/AP)

Projecting trades in a Mock Draft is a futile effort. There are too many variables and rumors. It's mostly speculation. And really, it's just an exercise in fantasy football.

But … well, who doesn't love fantasy football?

Read More

Oct 14, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Southern California Trojans quarterback Sam Darnold. (Kirby Lee)
Oct 14, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Southern California Trojans quarterback Sam Darnold. (Kirby Lee)

In his latest mock draft, Sports Illustrated's Albert Breer has the Jets taking Sam Darnold as their quarterback of the future at No. 3. 

Many experts believe Darnold could be the first overall pick by the Browns, and if he doesn't land with Cleveland, then the Giants would scoop him up at No. 2. However, with Josh Allen as Breer's No. 1 pick and the Giants electing to go with Saquon Barkley over a quarterback, Darnold drops in the Jets' lap. 

So, there is no need for the Jets to choose between Josh Rosen or Baker Mayfield...

Read More

Mangold's Hall of Fame chances 00:04:59
Dan Graca and Jon Hein debate over Nick Mangold's chances at making the Hall of Fame and the Devils' chances at beating the Lightning.

After a year out of football, No. 74 is officially hanging up the cleats. 

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive: On the lists of favorite players and all-time greats, you'll rarely find a center. They're buried in the trenches, often noticed only when a bad snap happens or a defensive tackle breaks through.

The same was probably true for Nick Mangold during his 11 NFL seasons - rarely noticed from the outside and incredibly underappreciated game to game. Yet somehow he still emerged from his long career as a fan favorite. And he definitely emerged as one of the Jets' all-time greats.

Tags: Nick Mangold
Read More

New York Jets defensive end Leonard Williams gestures while jogging on the field prior to the game against the Buffalo Bills at New Era Field. (Rich Barnes/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets defensive end Leonard Williams gestures while jogging on the field prior to the game against the Buffalo Bills at New Era Field. (Rich Barnes/USA TODAY Sports)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

Jets GM Mike Maccagnan made it clear he had no worries about the state of the Jets' defensive line heading into the offseason. Sure, they've lost a lot of talent in recent years, trading Sheldon Richardson, cutting Muhammad Wilkerson and not re-signing Damon Harrison.

But they still have Leonard Williams, the sixth pick of the 2015 draft, and despite a down season last year, the Jets have huge expectations for him.

Tags: Damon Harrison, Leonard Williams, Muhammad Wilkerson, Sheldon Richardson, Steve McLendon, Ralph Vacchiano
Read More

Los Angeles Chargers kicker Nick Rose attempts a field goal during an NFL game against the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium. (Kirby Lee/USA TODAY Sports)
Los Angeles Chargers kicker Nick Rose attempts a field goal during an NFL game against the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium. (Kirby Lee/USA TODAY Sports)

The Jets were awarded kicker Nick Rose on Monday after the Los Angeles Chargers placed him on waivers, the team announced.

Rose made 11 of 14 field goals in 10 games with the Chargers and Washington Redskins last season and converted on 23 of 26 extra points. He went 1-for-3 as a member of the Chargers in Weeks 16 and 17, and 10-for-11 in eight games with Washington. His longest make last year was 55 yards.

Read More

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

Brian Winters remembers everything about the moment his 2017 season went off the rails. He remembers the time, the place, the play, and without question, the pain.

"It was second quarter in Oakland (in Week 2) with five minutes to go before half when we were driving in to the north end zone. I still remember it like it was yesterday," said the 26-year-old guard. "It was an outside zone play and (running back) Bilal (Powell) was trying to stretch it outside of me, so I went to continue to push my guy through. And as soon as I pushed through I felt like a pop."

Tags: Brian Winters, Wesley Johnson, Ralph Vacchiano
Read More

Oklahoma Sooners wide receiver Jeff Badet catches a touchdown pass against Texas Longhorns defensive back Kris Boyd in the second quarter at the Cotton Bowl. (Tim Heitman/USA TODAY Sports)
Oklahoma Sooners wide receiver Jeff Badet catches a touchdown pass against Texas Longhorns defensive back Kris Boyd in the second quarter at the Cotton Bowl. (Tim Heitman/USA TODAY Sports)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

Last week, we looked at some of the players who have been invited to attend an official pre-draft visit with the Jets. More names have leaked out over the past seven days, so let's break down some of the more interesting ones in detail.

Jeff Badet, WR, Oklahoma

Badet spent most of his collegiate career at Kentucky, but saw some high profile action last year after transferring to Oklahoma. He wasn't invited to the scouting combine, but if he had been, his pro day numbers for the 40-yard dash, vertical jump and broad jump would all have ranked first or second at the receiver position.

Read More

Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield drops back to pass against Ohio State during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 9, 2017, in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete) (Jay LaPrete/AP)
Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield drops back to pass against Ohio State during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 9, 2017, in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete) (Jay LaPrete/AP)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive: It's not quite crunch time yet, but there are less than three weeks until the start of the first round of the NFL draft, which means draft boards are in their final stages all around the league. It also means that the truth about which players are being targeted by which teams is starting to leak out -- albeit slowly.

Still, there are a lot of variables, especially in the first two picks. But at the moment there aren't many changes to my latest Mini-Mock Draft. The Browns are still taking a quarterback at 1. The Jets are still definitely taking one at 3. And I still think the Giants will take one -- assuming the right one is available -- at 2.

Here's a full look at my new Top 10, with some updated inside information...

Read More

 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

Former Jets QB Mark Sanchez has been suspended four games after violating the performance-enhancing drug policy, the league announced Friday. 

Sanchez, who last played for the Jets in 2013, was the Bear's third-string quarterback last season. He claimed that "unknowing supplement contamination" was the reason for his drug test to turn up positive. 

The 31-year-old took to Instagram to explain the whole story...

Read More

 (Kamil Krzaczynski)
(Kamil Krzaczynski)

The Jets have already begun condensing their roster for next season as the team announced several cuts on Friday. 

Among them was former Bears RB Jeremy Langford, who signed a reserve/future contract with the Jets worth $630,000 this offseason. The 26-year-old spent time jumping through practice squads last season, and though he was promoted to the Ravens' 53-man roster, an injury pushed him to the IR the same week he joined the team. 

Langford was released following his IR placement, and the former fourth-round pick wouldn't see time for the rest of the season.

Read More

New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. (13) greets Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant (88) during warmups before a game at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner)
New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. (13) greets Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant (88) during warmups before a game at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner)

WR Dez Bryant was released by the Cowboys on Friday afternoon, with Bryant reportedly hinting afterwards that he might be staying in the NFC East.

Bryant, 29, had a down year in 2017, with 69 receptions for 838 yards and six touchdowns in 16 games.

"I let a lot of things get in the way that bother me mentally," Bryant said late last season. "I feel like, if anything, I need to deal with in the offseason - is that. Like I said, there's only certain things I can control."

Read More

Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield drops back to pass against Ohio State during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 9, 2017, in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete) (Jay LaPrete/AP)
Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield drops back to pass against Ohio State during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 9, 2017, in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete) (Jay LaPrete/AP)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

The Jets are taking a quarterback with the third overall pick in the draft. They know it. Everyone knows it. And they know everyone knows it. "I mean, you'd have to be out of your mind to think otherwise," was how one team official said it. The only lingering question is: Which one?

The Jets have had or will have had private meetings and workouts with all of the top four, and GM Mike Maccagnan has made the rounds at their Pro Days. When they traded up to No. 3 they were convinced that they'd be happy with choosing from whichever two (or three) fell to them. And obviously at least two of the Big Four -- USC's Sam Darnold, UCLA's Josh Rosen, Oklahoma's Baker Mayfield and Wyoming's Josh Allen -- will still be there...

Read More

Jonas Schwartz and Willie Colon take their deepest dive yet into the NFL Draft. They discuss the latest with the four quarterbacks, as well as look back at Willie's draft process with the Steelers in 2006. Later, Brian Costello of the New York Post joins the show to give his take on the draft and the possibility of Mike Maccagnan signing defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins.

Click below to listen

Read More

New York Jets quarterback Josh McCown (15) gestures after thrown a touchdown pass to wide receiver Robby Anderson, not pictured, during the second half of an NFL football game against the Carolina Panthers, Sunday, Nov. 26, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun) (Bill Kostroun/AP)
New York Jets quarterback Josh McCown (15) gestures after thrown a touchdown pass to wide receiver Robby Anderson, not pictured, during the second half of an NFL football game against the Carolina Panthers, Sunday, Nov. 26, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun) (Bill Kostroun/AP)

The Jets' preseason schedule has been officially released for the 2018 season. 

The Falcons will be Gang Green's first opponent of the new year on their home turf. Then, they will hit the road to face the Redskins on Aug. 16 at 8 p.m.

The annual Snoopy Bowl at MetLife Stadium between the Jets and Giants will be the Week 3 matchup, with the Jets getting home field advantage.

Read More

Top QB prospect Josh Rosen 00:01:13
Former UCLA quarterback Josh Rosen is expected to be taken as one of the top QB's in the 2018 NFL Draft.

In his latest mock draft, ESPN's Mel Kiper sees the Jets grabbing UCLA QB Josh Rosen with their third overall pick -- as SNY's Ralph Vacchiano projects in his Mini Mock Draft 3.0. 

The Jets clearly traded up to the No. 3 slot to take one of the highly touted quarterbacks. With Wyoming's Josh Allen and USC's Sam Darnold going to the Browns and Giants respectively, Rosen appears the best option for the Jets in Kiper's mind. 

CLICK BELOW TO READ KIPER'S ANALYSIS

Read More

Oct 22, 2017; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; New York Jets tight end Eric Tomlinson (83) hurdles Miami Dolphins strong safety Nate Allen (29) during the first half at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports (Jasen Vinlove)
Oct 22, 2017; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; New York Jets tight end Eric Tomlinson (83) hurdles Miami Dolphins strong safety Nate Allen (29) during the first half at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports (Jasen Vinlove)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

Having opted to let Austin Seferain-Jenkins leave in free agency, the Jets are relying on a group of young tight ends to replace his production, recently adding two more options to the mix.

It's possible the Jets could look to add to the group via the draft but, for now, let's consider what each of the tight ends currently on the roster brings to the table, and consider how they might be used in 2018...

Read More

Top QB prospect Josh Rosen 00:01:13
Former UCLA quarterback Josh Rosen is expected to be taken as one of the top QB's in the 2018 NFL Draft.

With the NFL Draft a little over two weeks away, the Jets continue to get their last live look at the top prospects they could select with their third overall pick. 

After Oklahoma QB Baker Mayfield wraps up his private workout with the Jets Tuesday, UCLA QB Josh Rosen will visit the team, per SNY's Ralph Vacchiano.

After Rosen's visit, USC QB Sam Darnold is expected to be next on the list at some point later this week. Wyoming QB Josh Allen is also expected to visit at a later date.

Read More

 (Aaron Doster)
(Aaron Doster)

The Jets continue to bolster their defense with another addition at the second tier in vetearn LB Kevin Minter, the team announced Monday. 

Minter most recently played for the Bengals in 2017, where he tallied 32 tackles in nine games. 

He was a second round draft pick by the Cardinals back in 2013, and he would spend four seasons in Arizona before heading to Cincinnati. He totaled 175 tackles, five sacks, one forced fumble, and six passes defended over 61 games (37 starts). 

Read More