Nov 6, 2016; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Rams quarterback Case Keenum (17) looks to pass against the Carolina Panthers during a NFL football game at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports (Kirby Lee)
Nov 6, 2016; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Rams quarterback Case Keenum (17) looks to pass against the Carolina Panthers during a NFL football game at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports (Kirby Lee)

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…

After having blown their chance to get right back into the Wild Card mix last week, the Jets host the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday, rounding out their pre-bye week schedule. The Rams have lost four straight after a 3-1 start that included low-scoring wins over the Seahawks and Cardinals. The teams last met in 2012 with the Jets, led by Mark Sanchez, winning 27-13. That was the second win in a row in the series for the Jets, following a sequence of seven straight Rams wins that dated back to 1983. 

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

Quarterbacks

Case Keenum remains as the Rams' starter, with the coaching staff sticking by him despite a disappointing season so far. Keenum won the job in preseason and fared reasonably well as a game manager in an early season three-game winning streak. However, it took the Rams until week three to score their first offensive touchdown of the season and he's thrown eight interceptions and been sacked 12 times over the current four-game losing streak.

Looming on the horizon is first overall pick Jared Goff, who has yet to play but will surely get his opportunity soon if the Rams fall out of contention. Earlier this week, Cris Carter called the pick a "colossal mess-up" and suggested that the Rams should admit they had blown it by selecting him. Goff completed less than 45 percent of his passes against backups in the preseason.

Head coach Jeff Fisher has suggested that Keenum's struggles are partly attributable to poor execution elsewhere on the offense, which might explain their reluctance to turn to Goff if that's a concern.

Offensive Line

The Rams' offensive line has been a real weakness, with former second overall pick Greg Robinson in particular continuing to struggle at left tackle. Robinson is only halfway through his third season, but has already been flagged for 35 penalties, including nine this year.

The one thing the Rams' line has going for it is continuity. Robinson, center Tim Barnes, left guard Rodger Saffold and right tackle Rob Havenstein have missed just one snap between them all season, and all four were also opening day starters last year. Havenstein, who was drafted in the second round last season, has been the most reliable lineman on the team in 2016.

At right guard, both Cody Wichmann and Jamon Brown have seen time, but Brown has been injured over the past few weeks so Wichmann is more likely to start. As with Havenstein, both were drafted last season.

Garrett Reynolds has been a big loss on the line, after having been released in September due to a preseason injury. Saffold, Wichmann and Brown started 21 games between them at guard last year though, so there is plenty of familiarity there.

Running Backs

Last year's 10th overall pick Todd Gurley had a disappointing start to the season. His best game saw him rush for 85 yards and two touchdowns in the Week 3 win over the Bucs, but averaged just 3.1 yards per carry. That was his highest yards per carry average in any of the first five weeks. Gurley's average has improved to four yards per carry over the past three games, but the Rams have still lost all three. In addition, he's carried the ball just 14 times per game in those three, as opposed to 21 times per game in the first five.

Gurley has been dealing with a thigh injury but is going to play. His main backup is Benny Cunningham, who has just 12 carries and 11 catches on the year. Gurley has 25 catches himself.

Fullback Cory Harkey is used sparingly but is a solid blocking back.

Receivers

One bright spot from the Rams' season so far has been veteran Kenny Britt, who is well on his way to a career year and has recently started campaigning to make the Pro Bowl. Britt has 37 catches for 584 yards at the halfway point of the season. He's never had 50 catches or 800 yards in a season before and looks certain to surpass both as long as he remains healthy.

2013's eighth overall pick, Tavon Austin, is tied with Britt with 37 receptions but is averaging just 8.5 yards per catch as the Rams throw him a lot of short passes and rely on him to create yards after the catch. The third receiver is Brian Quick, who is tied with Britt with three touchdown catches on the year. He also leads the team with a 16.9 yards-per-catch average.



Lance Kendricks is a productive pass catcher at tight end. He has 32 catches on the year so far. Kendricks is slightly undersized and not much of a blocker though.

Most of the Rams' reserve pass catchers are rookies, with tight ends Temarrick Hemingway and Tyler Higbee and wide receivers Pharaoh Brown and Mike Thomas rounding out the rotation. Those four comprise two-thirds of the Rams' 2016 draft class but have combined for just six catches so far.

Defensive Line

While the Rams are widely considered one of the poorer teams in the league, they're actually ranked as the third-best defense in the NFL by Pro Football Focus. That defense was on show early on in the season, as they beat Seattle 9-3 and Arizona 17-13.

The driving force behind the defense is defensive tackle Aaron Donald, who - with JJ Watt out - can realistically claim to be the most dominant defensive player in the entire NFL. Donald is a relentless pass rusher and he has racked up five sacks in the last five games after surprisingly being held without one for the first three weeks.

Other than Donald, nobody on the Rams has more than two sacks, including Robert Quinn. Quinn had double digit sacks in each of his last three full seasons, including 19 in 2013. However, he missed half of last year and ended up with just five.

Thirty-one-year-old William Hayes plays across from Quinn. He has never had more than seven sacks in a season, but is an excellent run defender.

The fourth starter is Michael Brockers who, at 322 pounds, plays the space-stuffer role on the Rams' defense. He's been a bit banged up in recent weeks though.

The Rams will rotate in their reserves and give them plenty of reps, although Donald plays more than anyone else. Those reserves include former Patriots first-rounder Dominique Easley, who continues to show promise against the run, and experienced veterans Cam Thomas and Eugene Sims.



Linebackers

The Rams have an unusual depth chart which lists four defensive linemen, one linebacker and six defensive backs as their starters. By that measure, Alec Ogletree is their only starting linebacker and he never comes off the field so his reserves don't get to play.

However, one of those six listed defensive backs is Mark Barron, who despite still being listed as a safety by the team - and wearing a defensive back's number - plays almost exclusively in the box as a second linebacker. He's listed at just 213 pounds, but has tremendous athleticism.

Another safety who has actually been playing mostly in the box is rookie Josh Forrest, who was the only draft pick the Rams made in 2016 that wasn't a quarterback or a pass catcher.

Defensive Backs

The Rams operate their secondary with nickel personnel and have been performing well, no doubt helped by the amount of pressure being created up front.

Trumaine Johnson is actually the elder statesman of this group at 26. The other four starters are all 25, as they have some real potential as a unit, despite the departure of Janoris Jenkins. Johnson led the Rams with seven interceptions last season, although they have just four as a team so far this year.

Safety Maurice Alexander and slot corner LaMarcus Joyner are transitioning into a full-time role and each has responded well and shown improvement since last year.

The other safety TJ McDonald started as a rookie in 2013 and has been in the line-up ever since. He's the son of former Jets defensive backs coach Tim McDonald.

Troy Hill barely played last year as an undrafted rookie, but began the year as a starter and is still listed as one on the official depth chart. However, E.J. Gaines - who is only 24 - has been starting for the last few weeks. Gaines started as a rookie in 2014, but missed all of last year with a Lisfranc injury.

Special Teams

Punter Johnny Hekker is having an excellent year. He's allowed just 73 yards on returns all season long and has the third-best net average in the league. Placekicker Greg "Legatron" Zuerlein has been perfect from inside 50 yards so far this year, but missed two of his four attempts from beyond 50.

Cunningham and Austin have been handling return duties for the Rams for the fourth straight year. While neither has broken a 50-yard return yet so far this year, they've had some success in the past. Cunningham's 102-yard kick-off return last year was just two yards off being the longest non-scoring return in NFL history and Austin had four punt return touchdowns in his first three seasons.

Finally, on kick coverage, back-up receiver Bradley Marquez and rookie defensive back Marqui Christian are players to watch.


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

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

Tags: BGA

New York Jets tackle Ben Ijalana blocks during the second half of the preseason game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at MetLife Stadium. (Vincent Carchietta/USA Today Sports Images)
New York Jets tackle Ben Ijalana blocks during the second half of the preseason game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at MetLife Stadium. (Vincent Carchietta/USA Today Sports Images)

The Jets made offensive tackle Ben Ijalana a free agent on Monday after they failed to exercise his player option.

New York did not exercise Ijalana's $500,000 option bonus that would have activated his $4.5 million base salary for the 2018 season. By doing so, the Jets will save a total of $4.6 million.

Tags: Ben Ijalana
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Washington Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) throws a pass during the first half of an NFL football game against the New York Giants Sunday, Dec. 31, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun) (Bill Kostroun/AP)
Washington Redskins quarterback Kirk Cousins (8) throws a pass during the first half of an NFL football game against the New York Giants Sunday, Dec. 31, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun) (Bill Kostroun/AP)

The Jets know they need a quarterback, and in particular, free-agent QB Kirk Cousins. That is why the team is "willing to pay whatever it takes" to employ him next season, per ESPN's Rich Cimini

New York has failed to find their franchise quarterback for years now, as fill-ins, so to speak, continue to come to town with Bryce Petty and Christian Hackenberg failing to show they are the guy the Jets need. Josh McCowwas the latest of those rentals, and he had a career year before an injury unfortunately ended his season. 

This offseason, though, GM Mike Maccagnan has no excuse in Cimini's eyes. He currently has over $70 million in cap space, and could have more than that by the time they can grab Cousins. The Redskins can still franchise tag him, so they could use him in a trade, but that is unlikely. 

Tags: Bryce Petty, Christian Hackenberg, Josh McCown
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In 2017, the Jets' running game struggles probably had more to do with the offensive line being overmatched than the performance of the backs.

Tags: Bilal Powell, Elijah McGuire, Matt Forte
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Cincinnati Bengals quarterback AJ McCarron throws against the Chicago Bears during the second half at Paul Brown Stadium. (David Kohl/USA TODAY Sports)
Cincinnati Bengals quarterback AJ McCarron throws against the Chicago Bears during the second half at Paul Brown Stadium. (David Kohl/USA TODAY Sports)

The Jets reportedly turned down a Cincinnati Bengals trade proposal that would have sent quarterback AJ McCarron to New York last season, according to ESPN's Rich Cimini.

Cincinnati, according to Cimini, called the Jets organization at the start of free agency and offered McCarron in a trade, however the Jets turned it down to focus on free agency. It is unclear what Cincinnati requested in the deal.

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 (Vincent Carchietta)
(Vincent Carchietta)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive: The Jets started over last offseason and actually built themselves a nice core of talent. They have many young, inexpensive players they can build around this spring.

They certainly have the tools to build around them - perhaps as much as $100 million in cap room, the sixth overall pick in the draft, and some extra picks too. And that's good, because even though the Jets exceeded expectations last season, they were still 5-11, and have plenty of holes to fill.

Now, as they get ready to begin Phase 2 of their rebuilding project, here's a look at their biggest needs.

Tags: Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Brian Winters, James Carpenter, Juston Burris, Leonard Williams, Morris Claiborne, Muhammad Wilkerson, Quincy Enunwa, Robby Anderson, Sheldon Richardson, Ralph Vacchiano
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 (Trevor Ruszkowski)
(Trevor Ruszkowski)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter: Cornerback is one position where the Jets obviously need to upgrade.

They opted not to pick up a corner from last year's deep draft class until they took two project players - Jeremy Clark and Derrick Jones - in the sixth round. The coaching staff claimed to like the upside of these players along with Juston Burris and Darryl Roberts as well as Rashard Robinson, who was added via trade at the deadline.

However, none of these players stepped up as hoped.

Tags: Derrick Jones, Jeremy Clark, Juston Burris, Morris Claiborne
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 (Kirby Lee)
(Kirby Lee)

"Broadway Baker" has a nice ring to top prospect QB Baker Mayfield

The 2017 Heisman Trophy Award winner sat down with The Post's Steve Serby to talk about the prospect of playing in the Big Apple, and if he has what it takes to succeed in a market that isn't friendly to anyone. 

Simply put: Mayfield loves the spotlight...

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New York Jets quarterback coach Jeremy Bates during the second half at Raymond James Stadium. (Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets quarterback coach Jeremy Bates during the second half at Raymond James Stadium. (Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports)

The Jets have officially announced the hiring of Jeremy Bates as offensive coordinator/QB Coach, and announced the hirings of Rick Dennison as offensive line coac/run game coordinator and Steve Jackson as assistant defensive backs coach.

"Jeremy is a talented coach who has a sound understanding of what it takes to build a successful offense," head coach Todd Bowles said in a press release. "Having spent last season with us, he offers continuity and has a good sense of what we need to do to improve. I look forward to him working together with our offensive coaches."

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive: When Todd Bowles decided to fire offensive coordinator John Morton, he always had quarterbacks coach Jeremy Bates in mind as a replacement...

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 (Jeremy Brevard)
(Jeremy Brevard)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

The Jets have been a team whose defense has been built around their interior linemen for a long time, but Muhammad Wilkerson's anticipated departure could be an opportunity to reinvent themselves by finding a difference-maker who can create constant pressure off the edge.

The Jets haven't really had an elite edge rusher since John Abraham, who was traded before the 2006 draft. They've tried drafting one high (Vernon Gholston), converting an interior lineman into one (Quinton Coples), and bringing in an established veteran (Jason Taylor). But none of these have been successful. None of their low-cost free agents, reclamation projects, or later draft picks have stepped up either.

Tags: Dylan Donahue, Jordan Jenkins, Lorenzo Mauldin
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Nov 2, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets general manager Mike Maccagnan on the sidelines before a game against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Nov 2, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets general manager Mike Maccagnan on the sidelines before a game against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

The Jets are in position to be the kings of free agency, with potentially more salary cap room to spend than any team except for the Cleveland Browns. They are already projected to have about $75 million in salary cap space, and that's if they don't make another move.

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New York Jets cornerback Morris Claiborne breaks up a touchdown attempt to Miami Dolphins wide receiver Jarvis Landry in the second half at MetLife Stadium. (Robert Deutsch/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets cornerback Morris Claiborne breaks up a touchdown attempt to Miami Dolphins wide receiver Jarvis Landry in the second half at MetLife Stadium. (Robert Deutsch/USA TODAY Sports)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

When the free agency frenzy finally begins, the Jets figure to be at the center of the storm. And all eyes will be on how hard they go after the quarterback they so desperately need.

But they have a ton of salary cap space to spend in other areas, including maybe on the 24 players they have on their roster who are approaching free agency. Here's a look at all their free agents-to-be, and their prospects of returning or finding potential riches somewhere else around the league:

Tags: Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Brent Qvale, Chandler Catanzaro, Dakota Dozier, Demario Davis, Josh McCown, Morris Claiborne, Muhammad Wilkerson, Quincy Enunwa, Rontez Miles, Wesley Johnson, Ralph Vacchiano
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 (Mark J. Rebilas)
(Mark J. Rebilas)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

There are always plenty of receiver prospects who make an immediate impact as a rookie, even in the later rounds. However, the Jets haven't had much success in recent years despite selecting seven wideouts in the last four drafts.

While four of those seven are under contract for 2018 and a fifth -- restricted free agent Quincy Enunwa -- also figures to be back, the Jets got just 15 catches of production from that group in 2017.

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Daily News Live: Jimmy Garoppolo 00:03:54
The Daily News Live crew discusses the impact Jimmy Garoppolo's new contract will have on the deal Kirk Cousins will want.

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

Jimmy Garoppolo just became the NFL's highest paid player, even though he's only started seven NFL games and thrown 12 touchdown passes in four seasons. He reportedly agreed to a monster, five-year, $137.5 million deal with the San Francisco 49ers -- a record average of $27.5 million per season. That record will be very short-lived.

It's a simple fact of the NFL that the price of franchise quarterbacks only goes up, and in less than five weeks another one will be on the open market. And when Kirk Cousins officially becomes free on March 14 you can bet his deal will eclipse what Garoppolo just got...

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 (Glenn Andrews)
(Glenn Andrews)

In NFL.com's latest mock draft, Chad Reuter forecasted the first three rounds for all teams. With the Jets first selection at no. 6 overall, Reuter has them taking Wyoming QB Josh Allen.

The Jets take Allen over Oklahoma QB Baker Mayfield, who fell to the Cardinals at no. 15. USC QB Sam Darnold went no. 1 to the Browns and UCLA QB Josh Rosen went no. 2 to the Giants.

Allen threw for 3,202 yards with 28 touchdowns and 15 interceptions in his sophomore season. However, his production dropped this season to 1,812 yards and 16 touchdowns. He also suffered a shoulder injury, and was forced to miss the final two regular-season games this year...

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 (Chuck Cook)
(Chuck Cook)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

Most of the draft discussions surrounding quarterback prospects have been focused on the consensus top five prospects: UCLA's Josh Rosen, USC's Sam Darnold, Oklahoma's Baker Mayfield, Wyoming's Josh Allen and Lamar Jackson from Louisville.

However, depending how the offseason goes, the Jets might end up in a situation where they're not in the market for one of the top prospects.

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Nov 26, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Chiefs cornerback Darrelle Revis (24) (Jay Biggerstaff)
Nov 26, 2017; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Chiefs cornerback Darrelle Revis (24) (Jay Biggerstaff)

The Chiefs have released former Jet Darrelle Revis, the team announced. 

Revis, 32, would have been owed a $10 million contract guarantee if he was still on the roster on March 18. He was signed by Chiefs in November, playing five games, including two starts. 

After the Chiefs' season ended, Revis admitted he wasn't at his best.

Tags: Darrelle Revis
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New York Jets defensive coordinator Kacy Rodgers responds to questions from media during OTA at Atlantic Health Training Center. (Noah K. Murray)
New York Jets defensive coordinator Kacy Rodgers responds to questions from media during OTA at Atlantic Health Training Center. (Noah K. Murray)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive: Kacy Rodgers never got a chance to play in the NFL before he turned to coaching. But now he might be able to give his son the shot that he never had.

The Jets will be signing Kacy Rodgers II, the son of their current defensive coordinator, according to his agent, David Canter. Rodgers II will join the Jets for their offseason program, at least, after two years with the Saskatchewan Roughriders of the Canadian Football League.

Rodgers II is a 6-2, 208-pound defensive back out of the University of Miami. In 2014 he was a tryout player at the Kansas City Chiefs rookie minicamp, but didn't stick. He then signed with the CFL's Edmonton Eskimos and spent a year on their practice squad before joining the Roughriders...

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Former Jets C Nick Mangold was thinking about starting his political career, and running in his local GOP primary, according to Politico's Matt Friedman.

However, Mangold said Thursday that he will not be running.

Mangold would've been running to replace the retiring Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen, who represents the 11th District of New Jersey. Essex County Republican Chairman Al Barlas has spoken with Mangold, and he appears to be serious about running for the position.

Tags: Nick Mangold
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Jan 14, 2018; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers running back Le'Veon Bell (26) rushes the ball against the Jacksonville Jaguars during the fourth quarter in the AFC Divisional Playoff game at Heinz Field. Jacksonville won 45-42. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports (Charles LeClaire)
Jan 14, 2018; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers running back Le'Veon Bell (26) rushes the ball against the Jacksonville Jaguars during the fourth quarter in the AFC Divisional Playoff game at Heinz Field. Jacksonville won 45-42. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports (Charles LeClaire)

After saying he wouldn't join the Jets for $60 million, Steelers RB Le'Veon Bell, a pending free agent, told TMZ exactly what it would take to secure his services.

"A hundred Ms," Bell said, referring to $100 million. "Hey, listen to me: I play running back, but they've got to respect me like I am, man." 

Bell, 25, responded to a fan's tweet last week asking what amount of money it would take for him to join the Jets.

 

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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

Another year has come and gone without the Jets winning the Super Bowl. Even the Philadelphia Eagles now have ended their forever Super Bowl drought. If you're counting, that's 49 straight Super Bowls that have been played without the Jets.

Can the 50th time be their charm?

Tags: Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Bilal Powell, Elijah McGuire, Leonard Williams, Matt Forte, Muhammad Wilkerson, Quincy Enunwa, Robby Anderson, Sheldon Richardson, Ralph Vacchiano
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 (Kirby Lee)
(Kirby Lee)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

Two years ago, the Jets drafted Darron Lee with their first pick, hoping to shore up one of their inside linebacker positions for the foreseeable future. Over the course of his first two seasons, he's been up and down, but he has retained an every-down role.

Last year, he struggled initially, then played the best football of his career in the middle of the season, only to regress down the stretch. However, there are no indications that the Jets intend to move on from Lee.

Tags: Darron Lee, Demario Davis, Jamal Adams
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Jan 27, 2018; Mobile, AL, USA; North Squad quarterback Josh Allen of Wyoming (17) throw a pass during the second quarter of the 2018 Senior Bowl against the South Squad at Ladd-Peebles Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Glenn Andrews-USA TODAY Sports (Glenn Andrews)
Jan 27, 2018; Mobile, AL, USA; North Squad quarterback Josh Allen of Wyoming (17) throw a pass during the second quarter of the 2018 Senior Bowl against the South Squad at Ladd-Peebles Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Glenn Andrews-USA TODAY Sports (Glenn Andrews)

In his latest mock draft, Todd McShay changed his pick for the Jets, and has them taking Wyoming QB Josh Allen with the sixth overall pick. 

McShay originally had New York taking LSU DE Arden Key. However, he had a change of heart as the Jets desperately need to find their franchise quarterback. But he warns not to forget about free agency, where GM Mike Maccagnan will have about $100 million to go after high-profile QB Kirk Cousins.

"Yes, it's a running theme -- this is another landing spot for Cousins," McShay writes. "If the Jets don't sign him in free agency, Allen makes a lot of sense if Mayfield is off the board. There is a significant drop-off in talent after the first four QBs in this draft, so the Jets need to make sure they grab one here. Allen had an impressive performance at the Senior Bowl, showing off his arm and his mobility. There are still concerns about his accuracy and ability to make multidimensional throws consistently, but all the tools are there. And he has the prototypical QB build (6-foot-4 7/8, 237 pounds)."

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 (Matthew Emmons)
(Matthew Emmons)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

The Philadelphia Eagles would be absolutely crazy to get rid of Nick Foles now after he slayed the mighty Patriots, and was rightfully named the Super Bowl MVP. Yes, they have Carson Wentz, a legitimate MVP candidate, before he got hurt. And yes, Foles will likely be Wentz's backup again next season.

But didn't Foles just prove to everyone how valuable a backup quarterback on a contender really is?

Tags: Ryan Fitzpatrick, Ralph Vacchiano
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 (Jerome Miron)
(Jerome Miron)

In last year's draft, the Jets used their first two picks on safeties, and Jamal Adams and Marcus Maye started every game alongside one another in the secondary. Those starting roles seem settled for the next few years, but the Jets like to operate out of packages with three and even four safeties, so Todd Bowles may be keen to add some depth.

Last year, Rontez Miles and Terrance Brooks each saw regular playing time, often playing together as the Jets used a four-safety dime package in passing situations. Also, Doug Middleton, who missed the season due to injury, was expected to contribute. All three are now out of contract though, so the Jets may look to fortify their depth in the draft.

While it seems unlikely the Jets would select another safety with their top pick, Alabama's Minkah Fitzpatrick is a possible consideration due to his versatility. Could Fitzpatrick be like Jalen Ramsey -- a hybrid cornerback/safety who has developed into one of the league's better cornerbacks?

Tags: Jamal Adams, Marcus Maye, Rontez Miles
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GEICO SportsNite: Super Bowl 00:06:46
Nick Foles and the Eagles upset Tom Brady and the Patriots for the first Super Bowl win in Philadelphia's franchise history.

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) As their delirious fans sang their theme song and their owner lifted the Lombardi Trophy, the Philadelphia Eagles finally could breathe freely.

Tags: New England Patriots, Philadelphia Eagles
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Loud Mouths on the Super Bowl 00:05:06
Chris Carlin and Jon Hein host Loud Mouths from the Mall of America to discuss the Super Bowl and how they think it will play out.

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

THE GAME

The NFC Champion Philadelphia Eagles (15-3) vs. the AFC Champion New England Patriots (15-3) at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis on Sunday, Feb. 4 at 6:30 p.m. ET.

THE WEATHER

Thank goodness for domes! Outside the Super Bowl stadium the temperature won't even reach double digits, with a forecast high of 9 and a low of 0. Inside it'll be fine. Hopefully it'll be nice and toasty in front of your TV, too.

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 (Brad Mills)
(Brad Mills)

With the Alex Smith trade complete, it appeared the Redskins were going to allow Kirk Cousins to look for his lucrative deal in free agency. Now, they could have a change of heart.

Washington is considering placing the franchise tag on Cousins just so they could trade him, reports ESPN's Adam Schefter. The reasoning behind this decision would be for the Redskins to get back what they dished out in the trade with the Chiefs. So, instead of getting nothing in return by allowing the hottest free-agent commodity to walk, Washington is looking for something in return. 

However, if they do make that decision to tag him, it comes with a lot of risk considering Cousins is allowed to make his own decision. First, he can wait as long as he wants to sign the franchise tag, which would have the Redskins biting their fingernails as they watch the $34.5 million stay on their books.

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 (Jim Brown)
(Jim Brown)

Former Jets C Kevin Mawae was not among the players selected on Saturday for the Pro Football Hall of Fame's class of 2018.

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Retired NFL football coach Bill Parcells chats with New York Mets manager Terry Collins, not pictured, before a spring training baseball game between the Mets and the St. Louis Cardinals in Jupiter, Fla., Friday, March 30, 2012. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky) (Patrick Semansky/AP)
Retired NFL football coach Bill Parcells chats with New York Mets manager Terry Collins, not pictured, before a spring training baseball game between the Mets and the St. Louis Cardinals in Jupiter, Fla., Friday, March 30, 2012. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky) (Patrick Semansky/AP)

On Thursday night, ESPN aired their newest documentary "The Two Bills", which chronicled the relationship between Bill Parcells and Bill Belichick. Most of the filming took place at MetLife Stadium, but both Bills refused a request to do an interview in the Jets locker room. 

Belichick infamously left the Jets after one day as head coach and is the current head coach of division rival Patriots, so that was understandable. But why Parcells? Does he hold animosity towards the Jets? 

Well, Parcells clarified that it was not that he has ill will towards the Jets, it was just time to go that day...

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