I've been charting games for some of the Jets' upcoming opponents, enabling me to break down what to watch out for on gameday, so I'll be here every Sunday morning with an in depth breakdown of the Jets' opponent for each of the remaining games this season.

Tomorrow night, the Jets face the Tennessee Titans, a team that has struggled this year, but is still regarded as a step up in quality from their last two opponents. However, the Titans are 4-9 this year and that makes them worse than every team the Jets faced before their current two-game winning streak. The Jets are 4-1 against sub-500 teams this year with their only loss being at home to the 5-8 Dolphins.

After the jump, I break down the positional groupings (BGA-style!) to try and highlight what the Jets need to look out for.

Quarterbacks

Jake Locker will face the Jets for the first time on Sunday. Statistically, he's a below average quarterback, but he does have an ability to extend plays and gain yardage with his legs, something the Jets have struggled to contain at times this season. Locker is 2-6 in his eight starts this year, but has shown flashes of potential, including on Sunday against the Colts where he was 15-for-20 for 213 yards and a touchdown at halftime (before going just 7-for-15 for 49 yards with two interceptions in the second half). The Jets' complex blitz schemes will hopefully confuse Locker, who completes 63% of his passes when not under pressure, but only 38% when pressured.

If Locker gets hurt or benched, veteran Matt Hasselbeck will step in.

Offensive Line

The Titans offensive line, which is above average when at full strength, has been decimated by injuries in recent weeks. Four starters are now on injured reserve. Michael Roos missed one game, but has otherwise started every game at left tackle and is a solid blindside pass protector. Fernando Velasco is the only player to start every game, but even he has had to move positions, sliding over from center to left guard last week to accommodate youngster Kevin Matthews. Right guard Deuce Lutui, once considered an elite prospect, hasn't lived up to his potential. However, he is now in his seventh season and will be making his 78th career start so he has plenty of experience. At right tackle, Mike Otto is basically a career backup, although he hasn't done too badly filling in over the last couple of weeks.

In pass protection, this unit has held up reasonably well, even in light of all the injuries, but their run blocking has been inconsistent. Their offensive coordinator (Chris Palmer) came under criticism during the offseason for putting together an offensive line that had a lot of size and weren't ideally suited to their zone blocking scheme. He lost his job three weeks ago. Dowell Loggains was promoted from QB coach to replace him.

Running Backs

The Titans running game depends almost entirely on Chris Johnson. However, some Titans fans feel that Johnson can't break tackles like he used to, so when the offensive line isn't creating holes, his impact is lessened. From 2008 to 2010, Johnson averaged 42 broken tackles per season, but since then has had only 51 in almost two years. He still has speed though, so the Jets will have to ensure they set the edge and maintain contain, something which could be a challenge if Bryan Thomas can't play. Behind the patchwork offensive line against the Colts, Johnson gained just 44 yards on 19 carries. The Jets, of course, ran for 252 yards against the same team.

Johnson will play virtually every snap, just bringing himself out for a snap or two when he needs a blow. The Titans occasionally go into a no-huddle spread offense, but Johnson will still stay in the game and split out wide. He does have over 220 career receptions, but seems to get most of these out of the backfield.

When Johnson does go to the bench, Darius Reynaud, who has playmaking ability himself, will fill in for him. Quinn Johnson is a reliable enough fullback, but doesn't play a great deal.

Receivers

Perhaps Tennessee's most dangerous receiving threat is tight end Jared Cook. After a 2011 campaign where he caught 49 passes for almost 800 yards, he looked set to break out and become a superstar. However, he hasn't really emerged as expected in 2012, with 44 catches but only 523 yards. He's still an athletic big play threat, although he has only had one play go for more than 30 yards since the opening weekend. EDIT: Actually, Cook just landed on injured reserve with a torn rotator cuff, so that's one less guy to worry about.

Their most established wideouts are Kenny Britt and Nate Washington. Britt is on his way to a career year in terms of receiving yards, but is averaging less than 13 yards a catch after having averaged over 17 yards per catch in his first three seasons and has been slowed by injuries. Washington has always been a good deep threat and has caught 39 passes on the season, one less than Britt. Rookie Kendall Wright leads the team with 59 receptions, although he's averaging less than 10 yards per catch and hasn't had a 40-yard play or a 100-yard game yet.

The Titans didn't use the no-huddle against the Colts last week, other than in a two minute drill at the end of the first half, but used it extensively against the Texans two weeks ago. I wonder if they see that as a way to counter a complex attacking defense, or just avoided using it because of the lack of preparation time, specifically for the offensive line. Either way, facing the Jets on Monday Night Football could be a situation where they might reintroduce this. If they do, look for Cook and Johnson to be in the game with three receivers.

Damien Williams is out with an injury, so the current fourth receiver on the depth chart is Mike Preston, a 2011 undrafted free agent who made his first ever appearance on offense in a NFL game last week. The backup tight ends are Craig Stevens (an all-round player who will often start) and Taylor Thompson, a blocking specialist.

Defensive Line

The Titans' defensive line definitely has the ability to generate pressure. On Sunday, they had 33 total pressures. By contrast, the Jets had 21 on Sunday against the Jaguars and that was their season high. Defensive ends Derrick Morgan and Kamerion Wimbley have combined for just 8.5 sacks officially, but Cameron Wake is the only 4-3 defensive end in the league with more QB hits than Morgan and Chris Long and Michael Bennett are the only ones with more pressures than Wimbley.

Against the run, the line is anchored by tackles Jurrell Casey and Sen'Derrick Marks. However, Wimbley struggles at times to get off blocks, so the Jets might look to run at him.

The Titans employ four backup linemen that don't play very much. The most interesting of these is Karl Klug, who last year had a sensational rookie season as a situation interior pass rusher. This year he hadn't been getting much playing time, but made a big impact against the Colts with two sacks, a hit and three pressures in just nine pass rush attempts, so he could be set to get a bigger role.

Linebackers

The Titans play with a four man front virtually all of the time. The only real exception to this (other than when they go to a prevent defense) is when Akeem Ayers comes up to the edge of a three man line on passing downs, although he sometimes plays with his hand in the dirt when he does this. Ayers is their most talented linebacker and capable of contributing as a pass rusher. With Colin McCarthy out, they've been rotating veterans Tim Shaw and Will Witherspoon at middle linebacker. Rookie Zach Brown will play most of the time at the other linebacker spot.

Since their front four is so good at generating pressure, the Titans will only blitz their linebackers (other than Ayers) a couple of times a game.

Defensive Backs

The Titans don't bother to match their cornerbacks up. Jason McCourty (Patriot Devin McCourty's older brother) plays on the left and Alterraun Verner plays on the right. Verner hasn't been beaten for a touchdown all year, whereas McCourty has given up six. Rookie Coty Sensabaugh (Cowboy Gerald Sensabaugh's cousin) has been the third corner in recent weeks, although the Titans do also run some three-safety sets.

At safety, the Titans have been weak. Michael Griffin will usually play every snap, but he's had a terrible season, with 20 missed tackles. Griffin is totally unpredictable from year to year. He was awful in 2009, average in 2010 and great in 2011. Jordan Babineaux gets most of the reps alongside him, although the Titans have been rotating some other guys in over the last few weeks.

Special Teams

As we've seen in recent weeks, the Jets are susceptible to special teams breakdowns and the Titans are just as capable of exploiting that as any of the Jets' recent opponents. Reynaud is a fine return man and they've always been a team that is a threat to block a punt. The kicking game is fine too, with reliable veteran Rob Bironas connecting on 82% of his field goals this year and the underrated Brett Kern 3rd in net average for punting.

>>>

I'll be back on Tuesday to recap the game!

Stats from PFF were used in the completion of this article.

Tags: BGA, Editorial Aside, Bent Double

Daily News Live: Hack Attack 00:02:52
As the Jets get ready for their second preseason game, the panel discusses if a good game from Hackenberg can win him the starting job.

 

Tags: Christian Hackenberg
Read More

JRSportBrief: NFL work stoppage? 00:01:54
In the latest installment of JRSportBrief on SNY.tv, JR talks about the idea of an NFL work stoppage in a few years.

In the latest installment of JRSportBrief on SNY.tv, JR talks about the idea of an NFL work stoppage in a few years.

 

 

Read More

In the latest episode of The Jet Stream, Jonas Schwartz and Willie Colon look back at the eight sacks the Jets' D laid on the Tennessee Titans, as well as Christian Hackenberg's performance. Later, the guys discuss the wide receivers, offensive line, and their expectations for this week's matchup with the Detroit Lions.

Read More

New York Jets quarterback Josh McCown watches as quarterback Christian Hackenberg warms up before a preseason game against the Tennessee Titans at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)
New York Jets quarterback Josh McCown watches as quarterback Christian Hackenberg warms up before a preseason game against the Tennessee Titans at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)

While New York Jets head coach Todd Bowles did name a starting quarterback for Saturday's preseason game against the Detroit Lions, he is expected to give Josh McCown more playing time.

McCown, who did not get receive any reps at Thursday's practice when the Jets did game-plan prep, according to ESPN's Rich Cimini, played the opening drive last week in New York's 7-3 win over the Tennessee Titans, but Christian Hackenberg then played the following eight possessions.

Bowles said he didn't anticipate any lineup changes, but left the door open to it by saying, "we'll discuss it."

Tags: Christian Hackenberg, Detroit Lions, Josh McCown
Read More

New York Jets outside linebacker Lorenzo Mauldin in action against the Jacksonville Jaguars during the preseason game at MetLife Stadium. (Vincent Carchietta/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets outside linebacker Lorenzo Mauldin in action against the Jacksonville Jaguars during the preseason game at MetLife Stadium. (Vincent Carchietta/USA TODAY Sports)

New York Jets linebacker Lorenzo Mauldin tweaked his back and sat out practice Thursday, leaving him uncertain for the preseason game at Detroit on Saturday night.

Mauldin had been dealing with a back issue earlier during training camp, but returned to the field Wednesday. Coach Todd Bowles said the third-year linebacker was inside receiving treatment during practice Thursday.

Bowles added that he was unsure how long Mauldin would be sidelined, but said that he would likely not play against the Lions.

Tags: Bilal Powell, Detroit Lions, Lorenzo Mauldin, Matt Forte, Quincy Enunwa
Read More

GEICO SportsNite: Jets camp 00:03:01
Jeane Coakley talks to Muhammad Wilkerson about being one of the older, vocal leaders in the locker room at Jets camp.

 

Read More

Daily News Live: Bowles' future 00:04:48
The Daily News Live panel discusses what Todd Bowles can do to save his job and if he is the right coach to lead a rebuilding effort.

 

Read More

 (Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports)
(Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports)

Looking to gain a physical edge on the field, Jets linebacker Darron Lee gained nine pounds heading into training camp. 

Lee, who was 227 pounds after minicamp ended, is now 236 at training camp. 

"On my conditioning test, everybody was like, 'You look noticeably bigger,'" Lee said, according to the New York Daily News. "Hey, I put in that work."

Tags: Darron Lee
Read More

Bowles rewards team during camp 00:02:29
Jeane Coakley and Ralph Vacchiano report from Florham Park where Todd Bowles allowed his team to remove pads during practice on Wednesday.

 

Read More

 (Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports)
(Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports)

Jets linebacker Lorenzo Mauldin showed up to a Manhattan court on Wednesday for his alleged assault of a Queens man, but the case has been delayed because prosecution wasn't ready to file paper work, according to multiple reports

Mauldin had turned himself in to authorities in late June for his alleged role in the nightclub attack that took place on April 2. The New York Post reported on June 21 that Mauldin had been charged with misdemeanor assault, which carries a maximum sentence of year in jail.

Read More

New York Jets head coach Todd Bowles answers questions from media at Atlantic Health Jets Training Center. Mandatory Credit: (Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets head coach Todd Bowles answers questions from media at Atlantic Health Jets Training Center. Mandatory Credit: (Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports)

Ralph Vacchiano, SNY.TV:

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. - In the wake of the ugly riots in Charlottesville, Va., there's a possibility that more NFL players will decline to stand for the national anthem during preseason games this weekend, joining a protest started by Colin Kaepernick last year. So far there's no indication any Jets players will join them.

But if they do, their coach will have their back.

"We don't have a rule book on what's right to protest and not protest," Bowles said at Jets training camp on Wednesday. "You don't know those things until the course of time, whether it's sitting for the anthem, whether it's raising your fist, wither it's speaking out, a walk to Washington -- who's to say whose protest is good or bad?"

Read More

New York Jets quarterback Christian Hackenberg (5) throws a pass against the Tennessee Titans during the third quarter at MetLife Stadium. (Dennis Schneidler-USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets quarterback Christian Hackenberg (5) throws a pass against the Tennessee Titans during the third quarter at MetLife Stadium. (Dennis Schneidler-USA TODAY Sports)

Ralph Vacchiano, SNY.TV:

John Morton seemed to like everything he saw with Jets quarterback Christian Hackenberg on Saturday night. He liked his poise, his decisiveness, the decisions he made. It was clearly a step in the right direction.

But was it a big step toward Hackenberg getting the starting job?

That's a question that Morton, the Jets new offensive coordinator, wasn't willing to answer on Tuesday. In fact, Morton made it sound like Hackenberg still has a long ways to go.

Read More

Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Lucky Whitehead (13) during the second half against the Cleveland Browns at FirstEnergy Stadium. The Cowboys won 35-10. (Scott R. Galvin-USA TODAY Sports)
Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Lucky Whitehead (13) during the second half against the Cleveland Browns at FirstEnergy Stadium. The Cowboys won 35-10. (Scott R. Galvin-USA TODAY Sports)

Jets WR Lucky Whitehead, who suffered a broken foot during Monday's practice, will have surgery for the injury, head coach Todd Bowles said on Wednesday.

Prior to deciding on surgery, Whitehead was expected to miss four-to-six weeks, SNY's Ralph Vacchiano confirmed.

Whitehead joined the Jets after he was released by the Cowboys on July 24. He returend two punts and a kickoff in the Jets' preseason opener. Serving primarily as a returner, he caught three passes for 48 yards for the Cowboys in 2016.

Read More

GEICO SportsNite: Jets camp 00:01:46
Jeane Coakley reports from Jets camp, where Todd Bowles was pleased with his team's response to his criticism.

 

Read More

Jets Training Camp report 00:01:37
SNY's Jeane Coakley reports from Jets training camp where head coach Todd Bowles was not pleased with the team's most recent practice.

 

Read More

New York Jets running back Matt Forte is tackled by Miami Dolphins corner back Tony Lippett during the fourth quarter at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)
New York Jets running back Matt Forte is tackled by Miami Dolphins corner back Tony Lippett during the fourth quarter at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)

Jets running back Matt Forte is missing time in the preseason and training camp due to a hamstring injury for the second year in a row, but told NJ.com's JJ Conrad he feels he is close to returning to the field.

"I'm feeling good, but not good enough to be in full practice yet," Forte said to Conrad on Monday. "I'm just going through what the trainers tell me, easing back in. I don't want to go back out there immediately and get injured again."

Forte, who did not play in Saturday's 7-3 win over the Tennessee Titans in the Jets' preseason opener, said he the trainers are being cautious with him given the nature of hamstring injuries and the fact the veteran running back underwent arthroscopic surgery to repair a torn meniscus at the end of last season.

Tags: Matt Forte
Read More

Oct 17, 2016; Glendale, AZ, USA; General view of a New York Jets helmet during the game against the Arizona Cardinals at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports (Matt Kartozian)
Oct 17, 2016; Glendale, AZ, USA; General view of a New York Jets helmet during the game against the Arizona Cardinals at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports (Matt Kartozian)

The Jets have signed undrafted rookie WR Daniel Williams, and waived WR Deshon Foxx, per SNY's Ralph Vacchiano. 

Williams spent time with the Oakland Raiders after going undrafted out of Jackson State (Miss.). Standing at 6-foot-2, 234 pounds, he totaled 184 receptions for 2,497 yards and 19 touchdowns in four years at college. 

Foxx went undrafted as well out of UConn in 2016. He spent time on the Seattle Seahawks practice squad before joining the Jets this offseason. The Jets waived him on May 9, but eventually resigned him on May 22. 

Read More

New York Jets quarterback Christian Hackenberg (5) watches as quarterback Josh McCown (15) warms up before a preseason game against the Tennessee Titans at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets quarterback Christian Hackenberg (5) watches as quarterback Josh McCown (15) warms up before a preseason game against the Tennessee Titans at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports)

With Christian Hackenberg and Bryce Petty still early in their NFL careers, Josh McCown is taking a leadership and mentorship role at quarterback in his first season with the Jets. 

"Every quarterback goes out there and they want to finish each drive with a touchdown, so when those things are happening, there is kind of an inner fight of, man, do I need to do more?" McCown said, according to Newsday. "Things happen and you get kind of delayed, but the fight as a quarterback is to stay in the system, stay within the game and don't be greedy and force the ball. So my hat is off to both of them for not doing that."

Tags: Bryce Petty, Christian Hackenberg
Read More

SNY's Jonas Schwartz and former NFL guard Willie Colon are live from Jets training camp in Florham Park. The guys open the show with SNY Jets reporter Jeane Coakley to discuss the biggest storylines from camp. Then, they welcome in tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins, who opens up about the troubled start to his NFL career, and how he is a changed man. Later, rookie safety Marcus Maye joins the show to give his thoughts on his first NFL training camp, and how he is adjusting to life in the New York area.

Click below to listen

 

Tags: Austin Seferian-Jenkins
Read More

Atlanta Falcons free safety Robenson Therezie returns a pass interception against the Jacksonville Jaguars during the second quarter at the Georgia Dome. (Dale Zanine/USA TODAY Sports)
Atlanta Falcons free safety Robenson Therezie returns a pass interception against the Jacksonville Jaguars during the second quarter at the Georgia Dome. (Dale Zanine/USA TODAY Sports)

The Jets signed former Atlanta Falcons defensive back Robenson Therezie after safety Doug Middleton reportedly suffered a torn pec.

Therezie, a 26-year-old free safety, recorded one interception, two passes defensed and 36 combined tackles in 25 games with Atlanta over the past two seasons. He was an undrafted free agent out of Auburn.

Middleton, who was competing for a backup role with New York, recorded six combined tackles and one pass defensed in four games as a Jet last season. He suffered the injury in the fourth quarter in Saturday's 7-3 preseason win over the Tennessee Titans and is expected to undergo surgery, according to the New York Daily News' Manish Mehta.

The Jets also announced they waived fullback Algernon Brown, who appeared in eight offensive plays and two plays on special teams on Saturday. He recorded 1,310 rushing yards and 13 rushing touchdowns in four seasons with BYU.

Read More

Jets WR Anderson on Hackenberg 00:01:31
Jets wide receiver Robby Anderson chats with SNY's Jeane Coakley about the Jets' preseason win over the Tennessee Titans.

 

Read More

This preseason, I'll be spotlighting an under-the-radar player who impressed me in each game and assessing that player's chances of making the team.  Today we'll look at defensive lineman Claude Pelon, who was one of the top performers in the Jets' 7-3 win over the Titans in the preseason opener.

Read More

Aug 12, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Christian Hackenberg (5) throws a pass against the Tennessee Titans during the third quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Dennis Schneidler-USA TODAY Sports (Dennis Schneidler)
Aug 12, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Christian Hackenberg (5) throws a pass against the Tennessee Titans during the third quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Dennis Schneidler-USA TODAY Sports (Dennis Schneidler)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - The last time anybody saw Christian Hackenberg in a game was the preseason finale almost a year ago. It was a disaster. He completed just 11 of 31 passes for 54 yards and threw an interception, too.

It was a much, much different and better Hackenberg that the Jets got to see on Saturday night.

Tags: Christian Hackenberg, Ralph Vacchiano
Read More

Aug 12, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; Tennessee Titans quarterback Alex Tanney (11) is sacked by New York Jets linebacker Julian Stanford (51) during the second quarter of a preseason game at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Aug 12, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; Tennessee Titans quarterback Alex Tanney (11) is sacked by New York Jets linebacker Julian Stanford (51) during the second quarter of a preseason game at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Josh McCown threw the Jets' first touchdown of the preseason and the team's defense tallied eight sacks in a 7-3 win over the Titans on Saturday at MetLife Stadium.

The Jets kept the Titans out of the endzone for the duration of the game, allowing only a field goal on a five-play, 49-yard drive in the third quarter. 

Read More

 ( Adam Hunger)
( Adam Hunger)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - The good news is the Jets really have no choice but to play most of their starters in their preseason opener. Or maybe that's the bad news given the low expectations for this team.

But Jets GM Mike Maccagnan and coach Todd Bowles have promised competition all summer long for almost every job on the roster, and the competition begins for real against the Tennessee Titans at the Meadowlands on Saturday night. Not all jobs are up for grabs, of course, but quite a few are.

Here's an inside look at some of the battles and 10 intriguing players to watch:

Tags: Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Chris Harper, Christian Hackenberg, Juston Burris, Ralph Vacchiano
Read More

 (Noah K. Murray)
(Noah K. Murray)

Some of the Jets' newest additions, TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins and S Marcus Maye, had high praise for their new head coach, Todd Bowles. 

Both appeared on SNY's The Jet Stream podcast, and when asked who is most impactful to the Jets this season, Seferian-Jenkins showed love to his coach. 

"I would definitely say, first of all, coach Bowles," Seferian-Jenkins told SNY's Jonas Schwartz and Willie Colon. "I never had a coach like that, that really just says a real, honest thing. Just tells you the truth. He doesn't want to lie to you, he doesn't want to sugarcoat anything. I think he's a phenomenal coach."

Tags: Austin Seferian-Jenkins
Read More

GEICO SportsNite: Jets camp 00:02:31
Jeane Coakley reports from Jets training camp to preview their first preseason game of the 2017-18 season on Saturday, August 12.

 

Read More

New York Jets quarterback Christian Hackenberg (5) warms up before a game against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets quarterback Christian Hackenberg (5) warms up before a game against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. - The memories of Christian Hackenberg from last season are few and not very good. He had two ugly preseason performances and then was buried on the depth chart, only resurfacing to occasionally misfire in practice. His future didn't appear bright at all.

That's why all eyes will be on Hackenberg when the Jets open up their preseason slate against the Tennesssee Titans at the Meadowlands on Saturday night.

Read More

Jets training camp 00:01:42
Jeane Coakley breaks down the latest news and updates from Jets camp as they get ready for their first preseason game on Saturday.

 

Read More

 (Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports)
(Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports)

Jets corner Buster Skrine thinks this year's secondary will not only be an improvement over last year's but that the group also has the potential to stand out. 

"This is my seventh year in the NFL and this is one of the most aggressive groups I've been around - and confident," Skrine said, according to Newsday.

Tags: Buster Skrine
Read More