Miami Dolphins quarterback Matt Moore throws a pass against Arizona Cardinals during the second half at Hard Rock Stadium. (Steve Mitchell/USA Today Sports Images)
Miami Dolphins quarterback Matt Moore throws a pass against Arizona Cardinals during the second half at Hard Rock Stadium. (Steve Mitchell/USA Today Sports Images)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

During the season, Bent's Game Analysis charts games for some of the Jets' upcoming opponents, enabling a breakdown of what to watch out for on gameday…

The Jets host the Dolphins on Saturday with a chance to play spoiler. The 8-5 Dolphins have won seven of their last eight to leap into the postseason mix. Back in November, the Jets took a late lead in Miami and it looked like both teams were headed for a 4-5 record. However, one special teams breakdown cost the Jets the game and the teams have since seen their fortunes headed in different directions. That was a major turning point in Miami's season, but there was another last week: losing starting quarterback Ryan Tannehill to injury.

Let's break down the positional groupings (BGA-style!) for the Dolphins to try and highlight what to watch out for.

Quarterbacks

Matt Moore has been one of the highest paid backups in the NFL over the past several seasons despite barely seeing any action. The Dolphins obviously made that commitment for exactly this type of situation, so now it falls on Moore to try and keep their postseason hopes alive.

His performance last week was a classic relief performance as he only threw five passes, but that was enough for the Dolphins to hold off Arizona and get the win on a late field goal. However, it will be interesting to see how he fares in the full-time role.

Moore hasn't thrown more than six passes in a game since midway through the 2012 season as he relieved an injured Tannehill and threw for 131 yards and a touchdown to polish off a blowout win over the Jets. His last start was also against the Jets, in the last game of the 2011 season. Moore threw two interceptions, but the Dolphins were able to hold on for a 19-17 win in a meaningless game most memorable for Wayne Hunter and Santonio Holmes arguing in the huddle. Moore was 6-6 as a starter in 2011, losing his first three, winning the next three and then alternating losses and wins in the last six.

The team signed veteran T.J. Yates to back Moore up earlier this week. He's actually seen more action than Moore in recent seasons, including in the postseason with Houston.

Offensive line

Miami has also taken a hit on the offensive line, losing a key starter in Pro Bowler Mike Pouncey. After missing the last couple of games with a hip issue, Pouncey was eventually shut down and placed on injured reserve this week. In his place, the inexperienced Anthony Steen, a first-year starter, has been struggling in the running game. He had two penalties against the Cardinals.

Left tackle Branden Albert is their next most important lineman. Miami was actually 4-0 when both Albert and Pouncey were in the lineup this year. Albert has been banged up, though, and hasn't played to his usual standard.

Rookie Laremy Tunsil continues to show promise, but lacks consistency. (It probably hasn't helped that he's moved backward and forward between guard and tackle over the course of the season.) After moving back to guard for the Ravens game two weeks ago, he committed three penalties in his roughest game of the year.

By contrast, another former first-round pick, Ja'Wuan James, is probably playing the best football of his career, impacting in the running game at right tackle. He's been Miami's most dependable lineman this year with the durability issues of their more established veterans. James has had seven penalties in the last eight games though.

At right guard, Jermon Bushrod, 32, is grading out as one of the worst guards in the NFL, so the Jets should have an advantage on the interior with Steen in between him and the rookie Tunsil.

Veterans Sam Young and Kraig Urbik provide depth off the bench.

Running Backs

Jay Ajayi is Miami's big breakout star this year and he figures to surpass the 1,000-yard mark this week. However, he hasn't had as much success when the offensive line hasn't been at full strength. Last time these teams met, Ajayi was going for a record third straight 200-yard game, but the Jets "limitedd" him to 111 yards. Since, however, he doesn't have a 100-yard game and is only averaging 3.6 yards per carry.

The backup is Damien Williams, who gets a lot of touches around the goal line. He has six total touchdowns, including three on pass receptions.

Third-stringer Keynan Drake has also been getting some occasional touches since his kickoff return beat the Jets in the first meeting.

Receivers

Jarvis Landry is another player who could surpass 1,000 yards on the season. As ever, the Jets will need to be wary of Landry's abilities to generate yards after the catch.

DeVante Parker is having a solid second season with 46 catches for almost 600 yards. He had his second 100-yard game of the season against the Chargers last month. Veteran Kenny Stills leads the team with six touchdown catches and a 17.6 yards-per-catch average.

Off the bench, rookie Leonte Carroo had his first NFL touchdown a couple of games ago against the 49ers, but he only played one snap last week.

Miami's top two tight ends were out when these teams met in November, but Dion Sims is back while Jordan Carmeron was placed on injured reserve. With Sims and Cameron out, Dominique Jones caught three passes for 42 yards and a touchdown in the Jets game, but he only has 19 yards on four catches otherwise.

Defensive line

Miami's defensive line is still the team's strength that provides a much sturdier test for the Jets' patched-together line than the 49ers did last week. As ever, veteran leadership has come from Ndamukong Suh and Cameron Wake. Wake leads the team with 9.5 sacks while Suh has five sacks and has been outstanding as usual against the run.

Miami signed Mario Williams to replace Olivier Vernon at defensive end and, while he hasn't been generating much statistical production (13 tackles, 1.5 sacks) he's been a solid presence. Williams has been limited in practice, so Andre Branch, who has 5.5 sacks this season, might continue to see more time. Jason Jones provides depth off the bench.

Earl Mitchell and Jordan Phillips split the reps pretty evenly on the inside with Suh, who typically plays about 80 percent of the time. They are mostly employed as space stuffers against the run.

Linebackers

Miami already placed Koa Misi on injured reserve and though fellow starters Kiko Alonso and Jelani Jenkins have been limited this week in practice after missing last week's game, it appears likely that one or both of them will return this week. Alonso leads the team with 97 tackles, but the athletic Jenkins has had a disappointing year and can be exploited in coverage.

With those three out, Mike Hull, an undrafted free agent signing from last year, got his first NFL start last week with former Giant Spencer Paysinger alongside him. Another 2015 undrafted free agent signing, Neville Hewitt, has been in the rotation for most of the year with four starts. Veteran Donald Butler has also seen regular action and has done a decent job in coverage.

Defensive backs

Brandon Marshall has continued his ongoing feud with Miami's No. 1 cornerback Byron Maxwell, who he says should be flagged a lot more often when the two are matched up. That promises to be a fun sideshow in an otherwise meaningless game from the Jets' standpoint.

Maxwell has had a good season, but the other listed starter, rookie Xavien Howard, has been out for several weeks due to injuries. Tony Lippett has been starting in his place and has done quite well, although he's given up 13 catches on 13 targets, including two scores, over the past two games.

Howard has been back at practice and may be ready to resume his starting role. Bobby McCain has received plenty of reps with Howard out and should still contribute in the slot.

At safety, former Detroit Lion Isa Abdul-Quddus is the main leader after Reshad Jones landed on injured reserve. Michael Thomas is still listed as the other starter, but Bacarri Rambo actually started the last three games.

Special teams

Kicker Andrew Franks had a poor start to the year, but has settled down since. He missed a field goal against the Ravens two weeks ago, but that was his only miss since Week 6. Punter Matt Darr has had a pretty poor year, with a net average below 40 yards for the second straight season. He's only had a net average better than 40 in two of the last eight games. Long snapper John Denney, a two-time Pro Bowler, has had a few uncharacteristically bad snaps this year.

Although Drake's return touchdown won the last meeting between these teams, he was only back there because Jakeem Grant had expended so much energy on the previous, negated, return. The diminutive rookie handles the return duties most of the time on punts and kickoffs, and is always dangerous. He had a punt return for a score earlier in the year.

Finally, in kick coverage, Hull is leading the team in tackling, which perhaps contributed to his elevation into the starting line-up. Thomas has also been productive.


I'll be back on Sunday to recap the game.

Note: Pro Football Focus provided some stats used in this article.

Tags: BGA, Brandon Marshall, Miami Dolphins

Oct 21, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (14) runs the ball against Minnesota Vikings linebacker Anthony Barr (55) during the third quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Oct 21, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (14) runs the ball against Minnesota Vikings linebacker Anthony Barr (55) during the third quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

In the Jets' Week 7 loss to Minnesota, Sam Darnold ended up with an unforgiving statline, completing 17-of-42 passes for 206 yards and three interceptions. However, there were extenuating circumstances -- notably the blustery conditions, the decimated receiving corps and the pressure from Minnesota's formidable defense.

Let's look at some specific examples before we draw conclusions...

Tags: Sam Darnold
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Sep 23, 2018; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson (93) during a game between the Minnesota Vikings and Buffalo Bills at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports (Brace Hemmelgarn)
Sep 23, 2018; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson (93) during a game between the Minnesota Vikings and Buffalo Bills at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports (Brace Hemmelgarn)

Former Jets defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson added insult to injury following Gang Green's 37-17 loss to the Vikings on Sunday. 

Richardson, who had two tackles for the Vikings in the victory, took a shot at Jets fans after noticing a fair amount of purple jerseys in the seats at MetLife Stadium. 

"We travel well...I noticed that," Richardson said, per the New York Post. "The Jets never really filled up stadiums anyway."

Tags: Sam Darnold, Sheldon Richardson
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Oct 21, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (14) during the second half against the Minnesota Vikings at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Oct 21, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (14) during the second half against the Minnesota Vikings at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive: EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - The Jets keep insisting they're not the same, old Jets, and that they're not going to fall apart like they did last season. Even on Sunday, when they were clearly out-classed on the field, they swore they were ready to be a playoff contender now.

"I think we're there," Jets safety Jamal Adams said. "I think we're close. This team is a great team. We have a 53-man roster full of a lot of talent. There's no waiting for next year, or rebuilding. There's none of that. This team can be special."

It's a nice thought, but it might not be the Jets' reality. And their 37-17 loss to the Vikings made that crystal clear. These Jets are headed in the right direction. They've got some terrific building blocks in place...

Tags: Andre Roberts, Charone Peake, Jamal Adams, Robby Anderson, Ralph Vacchiano
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Chris Herndon (89) Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Chris Herndon (89) Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter: In Sunday's frustrating loss to the Vikings, the Jets struggled to adapt to the windy conditions, especially in the second half. The Vikings were able to exploit some costly mistakes to win by a flattering 20-point margin. Let's take a look at three of the best and three of the worst performances...

Winners

TE Chris Herndon

Tags: Andre Roberts
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SNY's Week 7 Jets Report Cards 00:03:10
Ray Lucas, Willie Colon, and Bart Scott hand out their report cards after the Jets loss to the Vikings on Sunday, 37-17

Facing cold and windy conditions, the Jets were handed a loss in a 37-17 battle with the Vikings on Sunday. With the Jets falling to 3-4 on the season, the Jets Post Game Live crew breaks down their grades for the loss....

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Vikings pull away from Jets 00:01:25
Todd Bowles, Sam Darnold, Jermaine Kearse and Jamal Adams comment on the Jets' mistake-riddled, 37-17 loss to the Minnesota Vikings.

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - The Jets could have made a huge statement by beating the Minnesota Vikings, a true NFC contender, in what would've been their biggest victory of the season. And the Jets' defense did all it could to make it happen.

But in the end, the Jets learned what should have been obvious:

Sam Darnold isn't ready to be a contender just yet...

Tags: Bilal Powell, Brandon Copeland, Buster Skrine, Lachlan Edwards, Quincy Enunwa, Sam Darnold, Terrelle Pryor, Ralph Vacchiano
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Oct 21, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (14) reacts during the fourth quarter against the Minnesota Vikings at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Oct 21, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (14) reacts during the fourth quarter against the Minnesota Vikings at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

After the Vikings handed the Jets' their fourth loss of the season, quarterbacks Kirk Cousins and Sam Darnold met after the game. And, thanks to the Jets, video caught what Cousins said to the 21-year-old rookie. 

CLICK BELOW TO SEE THE VIDEO

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Bilal Powell (29) Jason McCourty (30) Mandatory Credit: Scott R. Galvin-USA TODAY Sports (Scott Galvin)
Bilal Powell (29) Jason McCourty (30) Mandatory Credit: Scott R. Galvin-USA TODAY Sports (Scott Galvin)

Jets RB Bilal Powell won't return to Sunday's contest against the Vikings after suffering a neck injury. 

Powell recorded 21 yards on five rushes as well as one catch for five yards before exiting. 

Coming into this game, the veteran back totaled 323 yards on 75 carries, while hauling in 10 catchesd for 105 yards and a touchdown. 

Tags: Bilal Powell
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Sep 9, 2018; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Broncos wide receiver Demaryius Thomas (88) looks for a touchdown call by the officials in the fourth quarter against the Seattle Seahawks at Broncos Stadium at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports (Ron Chenoy)
Sep 9, 2018; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Broncos wide receiver Demaryius Thomas (88) looks for a touchdown call by the officials in the fourth quarter against the Seattle Seahawks at Broncos Stadium at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports (Ron Chenoy)

With the Broncos making star WR Demaryius Thomas available via trade and the Jets weaker at the position than they have been at any point all season, should New York inquire?

A "handful of teams" have already reached out about trading for the 30-year-old Thomas, reports Adam Schefter of ESPN, who says the emergence of younger WR Courtland Smith has made Thomas more expendable.

Thomas is in the fourth year of a five-year, $70 million deal he signed prior to the 2015 season. He is making $8.5 million this season ($12 million cap hit, $15,5 million in dead cap money) and set to earn $14 million in 2019 ($17.5 million cap hit, $3.5 million dead cap money)...

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New York Jets running back Isaiah Crowell carries the ball against the Denver Broncos in the second quarter at MetLife Stadium. (Robert Deutsch/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets running back Isaiah Crowell carries the ball against the Denver Broncos in the second quarter at MetLife Stadium. (Robert Deutsch/USA TODAY Sports)

Jets RB Isaiah Crowell (ankle) will play Sunday against the Vikings. Crowell had 13 carries in Week 6 while dealing with an ankle injury. He missed multiple practices during the week but returned in a limited capacity on Friday.

Crowell racked up 219 rushing yards in the Jets' win over the Broncos in Week 5 and has totaled 430 yards on the ground in six games this season.

While Crowell is in, the Jets will be without CB Trumaine Johnson, CB Buster Skrine, CB Derrick Jones, LB Kevin Pierre-Louis, and DL Foley Fatukasi...

Tags: Buster Skrine, Marcus Maye, Quincy Enunwa
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Morris Claiborne (21) Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports (Kirby Lee)
Morris Claiborne (21) Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports (Kirby Lee)

CB Morris Claiborne is playing a key role on the Jets this season and tallied his first career pick six earlier this month, but it was not very long ago that he was not even sure whether he wanted to play another game in the NFL.

The former Cowboy said in an interview with Steve Serby of the New York Post that he was dealing a number of personal issues in the time leading up to the season, but he decided to stay after a conversation with his family.

"I sat down and thought about it with my kids," he said. "I talked about it with my wife. She was with me 100 percent, but I don't think she really felt like I was ready to let it go. 'Cause at that time, I feel like I was just reacting off emotions and what I was going through."

Tags: Morris Claiborne
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New York Jets wide receiver Terrelle Pryor is tackled after a catch by Miami Dolphins linebacker Kiko Alonso during the second half at MetLife Stadium. (Noah K. Murray/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets wide receiver Terrelle Pryor is tackled after a catch by Miami Dolphins linebacker Kiko Alonso during the second half at MetLife Stadium. (Noah K. Murray/USA TODAY Sports)

Terrelle Pryor's time with the Jets looks to be coming to an end. At least, for now.

The wide receiver is expected to be released on Saturday due to a groin injury, which will keep him out at least two weeks, according to SNY's Ralph Vacchiano.

The Jets are interested in bringing Pryor back when healthy if he does not sign elsewhere. 

Tags: Terrelle Pryor
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Oct 7, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (14) celebrates a touchdown against the Denver Broncos with New York Jets quarterback Josh McCown (15) during the second quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Oct 7, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (14) celebrates a touchdown against the Denver Broncos with New York Jets quarterback Josh McCown (15) during the second quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

For the second straight season, the Jets are 3-3 heading into Week 7, but this feels different. 

Just ask backup quarterback Josh McCown.  

McCown, who was the Jets starting quarterback last season, had the team off to a surprising 3-2 start heading into Week 6 before they sputtered and finished the season 2-9 to close with a 5-11 record. 

Tags: Josh McCown, Sam Darnold
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Bowles welcomes back Robinson 00:00:36
Todd Bowles welcomes back Rashard Robinson to a banged up secondary and likes the development of his young tight ends.

Jets head coach Todd Bowles discussed the return of Rashard Robinson and shed light on the tight end situation as the team prepares for Sunday's game against the Vikings. "The energy [Robinson] brings out on the practice field has been great," Bowles said.

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Sep 20, 2018; Cleveland, OH, USA; New York Jets defensive back Buster Skrine (41) warms up before the game against the Cleveland Browns at FirstEnergy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: David Dermer-USA TODAY Sports (David Dermer)
Sep 20, 2018; Cleveland, OH, USA; New York Jets defensive back Buster Skrine (41) warms up before the game against the Cleveland Browns at FirstEnergy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: David Dermer-USA TODAY Sports (David Dermer)

As the Jets released their final injury report on Friday, CB Buster Skrine was added to the list of players that are deemed inactive for their Sunday afternoon game against the Vikings. 

Skrine, who is dealing with a concussion, joined WR Quincy Enunwa and S Marcus Maye among those sidelined for the Week 7 matchup. 

Even worse is the fact that CB Trumaine Johnson (quad) and WR Terrelle Pryor (groin) were listed as doubtful for Sunday. Linebacker Kevin Pierre-Louis joins them on that list as well...

Tags: Leonard Williams, Quincy Enunwa, Robby Anderson
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Kirk Cousins (8) Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports (Brace Hemmelgarn)
Kirk Cousins (8) Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports (Brace Hemmelgarn)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive: FLORHAM PARK, N.J. - Sam Darnold was not the Jets' first choice to be their new franchise quarterback, even if he turns out to be the right choice. Kirk Cousins was always Plan A.

Of course, their pursuit of the 30-year-old Cousins turned out exactly how they feared it would. They offered him a fully guaranteed, three-year, $90 million contract, and he still took less to sign with the Minnesota Vikings.

But what if Cousins had said yes?

Tags: Josh McCown, Sam Darnold, Teddy Bridgewater, Ralph Vacchiano
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Jets get set for Minnesota 00:01:11
Todd Bowles discusses the Minnesota Vikings offense, Jeremy Bates talks red zone efficiency and Kacy Rodgers returns from health scare.

Jets defensive coordinator Kacy Rodgers returned to the podium for his weekly press conference on Thursday after being away from the team to address a serious undisclosed medical issue.

The 49-year-old did not provide specifics of the health scare, but said he's "feeling a lot better" after undergoing a procedure, per ESPN's Rich Cimini. The results came back negative, and he has been cleared to return to the sidelines as early as Sunday against the Vikings.

This past Sunday, Rodgers surprised the players before the Jets' win over the Colts at MetLife Stadium. Head coach Todd Bowles said Rodgers' visit gave the team a "big lift," especially for the defense.

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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)

DL Leonard Williams (back) and WR Robby Anderson (hamstring) returned as full participants in Thursday's Jets practice after missing practice the previous day.

While that's good news for the Jets ahead of Sunday's Week 7 game against the Vikings, there were plenty of players who remained on the "did not participate" list.

RB Isaiah Crowell (foot), WR Terrelle Pryor (groin), DB Buster Skrine (concussion), DB Trumaine Johnson (quad), WR Quincy Enunwa (ankle) and DB Marcus Maye did not practice for the second straight day.

Tags: Leonard Williams, Robby Anderson, Sam Darnold
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Aug 24, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants tight end Evan Engram (88) is tackled by New York Jets linebacker Avery Williamson (54) and linebacker Darron Lee (58) during the first half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Aug 24, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants tight end Evan Engram (88) is tackled by New York Jets linebacker Avery Williamson (54) and linebacker Darron Lee (58) during the first half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

Jets linebackers Darron Lee and Avery Williamson have cemented their status as "Best Football Friends."

In a video posted Thursday, the NFL buddies took on Bleacher Report's Chris Simms and Adam Lefkoe in a friendly game of "BFF Challenge."

Since the showdown was held on the network's turf, Lee and Williamson played as the away team, but they threw any home-field advantage out the window despite hilariously struggling through parts of the challenge.

Tags: Avery Williamson, Darron Lee
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Jets prep for Vikes 00:01:24
Sam Darnold and Todd Bowles talk about the Vikings defense, the team's progress so far and home crowd support.

Jets QB Sam Darnold has felt the energy at MetLife Stadium this season and he hopes the home-field advantage gives his team yet another boost when they face the Vikings on Sunday.

"It's safe to say we want to win every single game, but definitely on a homestand [we want to] win every single game," Darnold said. "Because our fans are amazing ... It's awesome to be able to play in front of them. Whenever we make a big play or score a touchdown, we feel the momentum in the whole arena really shift. It's awesome to be able to feel that and continue to grow off of that as a team."

Tags: Sam Darnold
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Sep 30, 2018; Jacksonville, FL, USA; New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (14) drops back to pass during the second quarter against the Jacksonville Jaguars at TIAA Bank Field. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports (Reinhold Matay)
Sep 30, 2018; Jacksonville, FL, USA; New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (14) drops back to pass during the second quarter against the Jacksonville Jaguars at TIAA Bank Field. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports (Reinhold Matay)

QB Sam Darnold (elbow) appeared on Wednesday's Jets injury report, but said the issue is "nothing crazy," per ESPN's Rich Cimini.

Darnold said he banged his right elbow while making a tackle following his interception during Sunday's win over the Colts. He added that it didn't affect him at all in practice, which he participated in fully on Wednesday.

Head coach Todd Bowles also told reporters he isn't worried about the rookie.

However, DL Leonard Williams (back), WR Robby Anderson (hamstring) and RB Isaiah Crowell (foot) highlighted a long list of Jets who did not practice.

Tags: Leonard Williams, Marcus Maye, Quincy Enunwa, Robby Anderson, Sam Darnold
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Joe Namath talks Sam Darnold 00:02:45
Jets legend Joe Namath talks about Super Bowl III, advice from Bear Bryant, and his thoughts on Sam Darnold's chances with the current team

Ahead of the Jets honoring the 50th anniversary of their Super Bowl III victory, Hall of Fame QB Joe Namath sat down with SNY's Jeane Coakley to reflect on that upset win, how he prayed "run clock," and what he thinks of today's QB Sam Darnold...

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Oct 14, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets cornerback Darryl Roberts (27) celebrates with cornerback Morris Claiborne (21) in front of Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Zach Pascal (14) during the second half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Oct 14, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets cornerback Darryl Roberts (27) celebrates with cornerback Morris Claiborne (21) in front of Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Zach Pascal (14) during the second half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

 

Click below to listen...

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Jan 1, 2017; Nashville, TN, USA; Tennessee Titans wide receiver Rishard Matthews (18) looks to catch a pass for a first down against Houston Texans defensive back Robert Nelson (32) during the second half at Nissan Stadium. Tennessee won 24-17. Mandatory Credit: Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports (Jim Brown)
Jan 1, 2017; Nashville, TN, USA; Tennessee Titans wide receiver Rishard Matthews (18) looks to catch a pass for a first down against Houston Texans defensive back Robert Nelson (32) during the second half at Nissan Stadium. Tennessee won 24-17. Mandatory Credit: Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports (Jim Brown)

The Jets are bringing in free agent WR Rishard Matthews for a workout Tuesday, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter.

The 29-year-old veteran was cut by the Titans last month after he requested a release due to his unhappiness with his playing time. He registered just three catches and 11 receiving yards over the first three weeks of the season.

But with Quincy Enunwa out between three and four weeks with a high-ankle sprain, the Jets are looking for a stopgap at wide receiver.

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New York Jets wide receiver Quincy Enunwa fumbles the ball in the second quarter after a hit by Indianapolis Colts linebacker Darius Leonard at MetLife Stadium. (Robert Deutsch/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets wide receiver Quincy Enunwa fumbles the ball in the second quarter after a hit by Indianapolis Colts linebacker Darius Leonard at MetLife Stadium. (Robert Deutsch/USA TODAY Sports)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

Quincy Enunwa had developed into Sam Darnold's most reliable receiver early in the season. He was the player Darnold threw to the most and turned to when he needed a third-down catch.

So what is Darnold going to do without Enunwa, who suffered a high-ankle sprain and will probably be out for about a month?

Tags: Quincy Enunwa, Sam Darnold, Terrelle Pryor, Ralph Vacchiano
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Oct 7, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (14) throws a pass against the Denver Broncos during the first quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Oct 7, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (14) throws a pass against the Denver Broncos during the first quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Sam Darnold wasn't just twiddling his thumbs while waiting to get drafted this past spring. Like all fans of his future NFL team, the Jets quarterback was keeping a close eye on the Kirk Cousins free agency saga before the Redskins QB signed with the Vikings.

"I was definitely following it," Darnold said Monday ahead of his Week 7 matchup with Minnesota Sunday at MetLife Stadium, per the New York Daily News. "During the draft process, there's nothing really else to pay attention to. Because I'm not on a team. We're not trying to dial up anything. I'm not at USC trying to figure out what we're going to do the next year. And I'm not on an NFL team trying to figure it out."

Tags: Sam Darnold
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Sep 30, 2018; Jacksonville, FL, USA; New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (14) scrambles during the first half against the Jacksonville Jaguars at TIAA Bank Field. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)
Sep 30, 2018; Jacksonville, FL, USA; New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (14) scrambles during the first half against the Jacksonville Jaguars at TIAA Bank Field. Mandatory Credit: Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports (Douglas DeFelice)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive: Six weeks into the season, all four of the rookie quarterbacks taken in the Top 10 of the NFL draft have at least three starts on their resume. They've had a chance to get rid of their first-game jitters, or to catch the NFL by surprise, and they're starting to settle in to their rookie seasons.

It will take years, of course, to determine which of the four is the best. It might even take that long for one of them to lead a team to the playoffs. But now that they've all settled down, it's easy to determine which ones are off to the best start.

Here's a look -- and a ranking -- at how the Fab Four are faring so far...

Tags: Sam Darnold, Ralph Vacchiano
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Oct 7, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (14) throws a pass against the Denver Broncos during the first quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Oct 7, 2018; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Sam Darnold (14) throws a pass against the Denver Broncos during the first quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

On the heels of a strong performance in Week 5, Sam Darnold was tremendous in the Jets' Week 6 win over the Colts. And his Pro Football Focus grades bear that out.

According to PFF, Darnold has the second-best passing grade (89.8) in the NFL over the last two weeks. Over that same span, his 71.4 deep accuracy percentage is third and his accuracy percentage with a clean pocket (87.2) is fourth.

Things opened up for Darnold in Week 5 due in part to the record-breaking game running back Isaiah Crowell had. But in the win over the Colts, he picked apart the Indianapolis defense without the benefit of being able to fall back on a red-hot ground game. 

Tags: Sam Darnold
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 (Richard Mackson)
(Richard Mackson)

The Raiders are awful again, and are reportedly ready to trade some of their most valuable assets -- including WR Amari Cooper. Should the Jets have interest?

Cooper -- the No. 4 overall pick in the 2015 Draft -- left the Raiders' Week 6 loss due to a concussion and has had a down 2018 so far after having just 48 receptions for 680 yards in 2017. But he was highly productive during his first two years in the league when the Raiders were actually competitive. 

He had 72 catches for 1,070 yards and six touchdowns during his rookie season in 2015 as the Raiders went 7-9. During Oakland's 12-4 season in 2016, Cooper reeled in 83 catches for 1,153 yards and five touchdowns.

Tags: Quincy Enunwa, Robby Anderson, Sam Darnold, Terrelle Pryor, Danny Abriano
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