The Jets added three players to their active roster via waiver claims yesterday. Jets fans might not know much about these players, so I'm going to look at them in detail and investigate what they could bring to the table. The first of these is former Dolphins wideout and kick returner Clyde Gates.

Gates is perhaps the best known of the three players the Jets picked up. The speedster out of Alibene Christian was drafted in the fourth round by the Dolphins last year and there was plenty of buzz surrounding his potential to help the team in his rookie season. In the end, he didn't produce much and the incoming coaching staff didn't take to him immediately. With limited preseason playing time he was unable to make it onto the final roster.

After the jump, we'll look at his performances from preseason (last year and this year) and the 2011 regular season.

2011 Preseason

Week One: Atlanta

Gates was used as the primary kick returner, got a couple of chances to return punts and got reps at receiver with the second unit. His two kick returns netted just 38 yards, but both came on short kicks, so he got out past the 20 each time, spinning out of a tackle for a few extra yards on the second one. On his first punt return he made a nice cut to get seven yards, but the play was negated by a penalty. He later misjudged the flight on a punt and almost muffed it, moving out of the way at the last minute as the ball bounced at the 15 and rolled inside the ten. As a receiver, he was targeted on two deep balls in the second quarter, burning his man by a step on the first one which was slightly overthrown. The second one was not even close. He made an impact in the third, catching a 17 yard pass on a 4th-and-7 post pattern with a defender draped all over him and then making a jumping catch at the back of the endzone for a six yard touchdown.

Week Two: Carolina

Gates didn't achieve much in this game with no catches on three targets, a rush for minus yardage, a kickoff return where he was nailed before he got back to the 20 and one punt return for ten yards. However, he did also draw a late hit penalty on that punt return after making the first man miss. On the rush, he actually did well to almost get back to the line of scrimmage because a defensive lineman penetrated deep into the backfield to blow the play up. Two of the incompletions came as he beat his man deep but the pass was overthrown. The third was a miscommunication where he ran deep but the quarterback threw to his back shoulder.

Game Three: Tampa Bay

Gates didn't return any kicks in this one, but was targeted six times. However, he caught just two passes for 15 yards. Of the four incompletions, one was just off his fingertips on a deep throw off a three step drop. The other three were inaccurate passes, although he was open on all three - one deep, one over the middle and one as he came back to the ball. His first catch went for six yards and a first down as he made a leaping catch and held on despite a big hit. The other saw him catch the ball on a quick hitch and turn upfield for nine yards. He also had a false start.

Game Four: Dallas

Gates didn't play much in this one, his roster spot already secured. He was thrown to twice - the first being ruled a lateral as he took the ball in the flat for a five yard run. The second one saw him finally catch a deep ball as he beat his man by a clear two steps for a 42 yard gain.

Summary

Gates caught five passes for 80 yards and a touchdown, rushed twice for two yards, returned three kickoffs for 63 yards and two punts for 12 yards. He was actually targeted 14 times, although many of these were downfield throws where he was open but the throw was inaccurate. When that happens, you have to wonder about the accuracy of his route running, but it was definitely apparent he was drawing attention from the deep safety.

2011 Regular Season

As the season got underway, Gates started off as the primary kick returner. He held this job for most of the year. He returned punts in week three only and averaged just under 10 snaps per game as a receiver.

Week One: New England

As a kick returner, Gates ran one kick back out to near the 50 with a great burst of speed, but it was negated by a penalty. On one other kick return, he leapt through a gap to get out to the 25.

Week Two: Houston

Gates was targeted twice - dropping a pass on a quick slant (although he felt he had been held) and drawing a pass interference flag on a deep ball where he burned Kareem Jackson and the ball was just off his fingertips. As a kick returner, he exploited a big hole to make a 39-yard runback, but also got caught running laterally and stuffed at his own eight. He also returned three punts for 32 yards.

Week Three: Cleveland

In this game, he was targeted once, going deep against Joe Haden and making a leaping grab, but coming down well out of bounds. He also caused an illegal formation penalty by lining up in the wrong spot. As a kick return man, he made a cut and spun out of a tackle for 27 yards, but that one was called back. He did get to the outside on another kick and was knocked out of bounds at the 39 with a penalty added on.

Week Four: San Diego

Gates made his first career catch in this game, grabbing an eight yard pass on an out pattern for a first down. However, he also got stuffed at his own ten yard line on another kick return.

Week Six: Jets

Following the bye week, Gates was once again stuffed inside his own 20, this time at the 14. His role reduced over the next few weeks and he wasn't significantly involved.

Week Ten: Washington

Something I wasn't expecting to see here - some good blocking from Gates, as he made a cut block from the slot to enable Brandon Marshall to pick up 15 on a wide receiver screen. He also added 30 yards on a kick return as he fought for a few extra yards at the end of the play.

Week 12: Dallas

More good blocking here, as he engaged with a cornerback on a downfield block and drove him out of the play, enabling Reggie Bush to gain 14 yards to the outside. Gates also caught an 11 yard pass as the defender gave him a big cushion on an out pattern on 1st and 20. He added a 32 yard kick return where he initially hesitated, but still got to the outside.

Week 13: Oakland

In the highlight of Gates' career so far, he returned a kickoff 77 yards with a great burst through two gaps, although he did benefit from what looked like it could have been an illegal block in the back. He was pushed out of bounds inside the 25. Gates also got the ball on an end around, making a good cut and spinning out of a tackle to pick up four yards.

Weeks 14 to 17

Gates had one decent kick return over each of the next three weeks, breaking a tackle on one (27 yards), driving tacklers for a few extra yards on another (30 yards) and breaking into the open field only to get tripped by a kicker on the last one (33 yards). However, in week 16 he was also stuffed inside his 20 once and in the last game it happened again as the Jets got him down at the 11.

Summary

After showing all that preseason promise, Gates had a disappointing year, production-wise, with just two catches for 19 yards on ten targets (including 0-for-5 on passes beyond 20 yards). However, he did average a creditable 24.8 yards per kickoff return, despite showing some questionable decision making.

2012 Preseason

The preseason did not begin well for Gates. Amidst questions about whether the new coaching staff liked him, he fell down the depth chart and didn't play in the first game. He did get some time in the last three games and was quoted as saying he felt confident he'd be on the roster because he'd had a good camp, only to be waived a couple of days later.

Week Two: Carolina

Gates was targeted three times in the third quarter. The first two were incomplete as he juggled the ball at the sideline on an out pattern and the timing was completely off on the second one. The third saw him create some positive yardage as he was interfered with when he easily beat the defender deep. In the fourth quarter, he caught his first pass on a quick throw to him on the outside as he broke a tackle and cut back to the middle for nine yards.

Week Three: Atlanta

In this game, Gates had a 17 yard catch and an 11 yard run in the second half. The catch saw him stop his route and make the catch, then run for some extra yards, while he had loads of room on the end around. He was targeted twice earlier on, making a leaping grab on a deep ball but coming down out of bounds on one and breaking up a potential pick-six on the other as the defender jumped the route on a throw out to the flat.

Week Four: Dallas

In his last chance to make a case, Gates didn't get many opportunities to prove himself. He was targeted once in the first half, but the ball was low and underthrown downfield. In the fourth quarter, he did catch a pass on a play where he lined up at fullback on the right side and leaked out into the flat on the left. That gained seven yards.

Summary:

With limited opportunities to perform, Gates caught three passes for 33 yards on eight targets and rushed once for 11 yards.

Conclusions

The inevitable comparison people will make is to David Clowney. Gates, almost exactly the same height and weight, is a deep threat who seems prone to mistakes, is raw as a route runner and may have minor character concerns. Like Clowney, he might not have an ideal attitude or build for a special teams role other than as a kick returner, although as least he has some experience of returning kicks at the NFL level, which Clowney did not. Another underrated aspect of Clowney's game was his blocking and there were a few flashes of that from Gates here.

One thing I'm wondering about is if this is a very short term move with Joe McKnight's status up in the air for week one. Did the Jets bring Gates in to return kickoffs until McKnight gets back and nothing more?

While he showed some signs of mental errors in the return game, Gates was still pretty productive and could thrive running behind Mike Westhoff's blocking schemes.

However, Tony Sparano is obviously very familiar with him, so I'd expect they have bigger plans for him than just returning kicks. As a receiver, over the course of the two preseasons and one regular season, Gates caught just 10 of 34 passes. While a high percentage of these were deep balls, so you would expect a low success rate, that's below 30%. Having said that, on a number of these he was wide open and the throw was just inaccurate. Maybe Mark Sanchez would have more success connecting with him down the field. He was definitely able to beat starter-level players deep, so could stretch the field just with the threat of getting deep.

This is a move for a player with undoubted upside, but whose career seems to have stalled at the moment. If he gets a shot, he could be the source of some chunk plays this season, but it seems clear his game needs a little refining.

I'll be back with a look at Konrad Reuland and Isaako Aaitui later.

Tags: BGA, Editorial Aside, Bent Double

Jets Post Game Overtime: 12/17 00:07:55
The Jets Post Game crew hands out its report cards after the Jets' defeat at the hands of the New Orleans Saints, 31-19, on Sunday.

New York Jets quarterback Bryce Petty stretches before Sunday's game against the against the New Orleans Saints at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. (Chuck Cook/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets quarterback Bryce Petty stretches before Sunday's game against the against the New Orleans Saints at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. (Chuck Cook/USA TODAY Sports)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

Bryce Petty has already been named the Jets starting quarterback for their game against the Los Angeles Chargers next Sunday.

Pencil him in for the start in the Jets' finale on New Year's Eve in New England, too.

Tags: Bryce Petty, Christian Hackenberg, Josh McCown, New Orleans Saints, Ralph Vacchiano
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New York Jets quarterback Bryce Petty throws against the New Orleans Saints during the first quarter at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. (Derick E. Hingle/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets quarterback Bryce Petty throws against the New Orleans Saints during the first quarter at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. (Derick E. Hingle/USA TODAY Sports)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

Bryce Petty has now had five chances over the last 13 months to prove he can be the Jets' Quarterback of the Future.

He hasn't. And he's not.

Tags: Bryce Petty, Elijah McGuire, Josh McCown, New Orleans Saints, Robby Anderson, Ralph Vacchiano
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Bowles, Petty on loss to Saints 00:02:05
Jets head coach Todd Bowles and QB Bryce Petty discuss their inability to convert on big plays and capitalize on three forced turnovers.

In Bryce Petty's first start of the season after Josh McCown's season-ending injury, the Jets lost to the Saints 30-19. The defense played admirably against the league's offense, but struggled in covering the dynamic backfield of Mark Ingram and Alvin Kamara.

Petty completed 18 of 37 passes for 171 yards with a touchdown and an interception. Elijah McGuire led the team in receiving with three catches for 48 yards and a touchdown. 

Bilal Powell led the team in rushing with 44 yards on 13 attempts with a touchdown...

Tags: Bilal Powell, Bryce Petty, Elijah McGuire
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New York Jets defensive end Leonard Williams on the sidelines during the third quarter against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets defensive end Leonard Williams on the sidelines during the third quarter against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)

The Jets announced that Leonard Williams suffered a concussion in their 30-19 loss to the Saints. 

Williams had enjoyed an active game with five tackles and an interception. 

The Jets will continue to evaluate Williams ahead of their next game on Christmas Eve against the Chargers. 

Tags: Leonard Williams
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Anderson plays Pick Six 00:02:29
Jets wide receiver Robby Anderson plays Pick Six with SNY's Jeane Coakley.

New York Jets defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson (96) warms up before an NFL football game against the New England Patriots Sunday, Oct. 15, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig) (Seth Wenig/AP)
New York Jets defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson (96) warms up before an NFL football game against the New England Patriots Sunday, Oct. 15, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig) (Seth Wenig/AP)

Mo Wilkerson won't play for the Jets on Sunday afternoon, and it's possible he'll never play for the Jets again.

Jets coach Todd Bowles is considering turning Wilkerson's one-week punishment into something more, according to a team source, including possibly sitting him for the final two games of the season, too. And with Wilkerson now a virtual lock to be cut in March before his 2018 salary becomes guaranteed, that means he may have played the final game of his Jets career...

Tags: Muhammad Wilkerson
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New York Jets defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson gestures after a play against the Buffalo Bills during the second half of an NFL football game, Thursday, Nov. 2, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun) (Bill Kostroun/AP)
New York Jets defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson gestures after a play against the Buffalo Bills during the second half of an NFL football game, Thursday, Nov. 2, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun) (Bill Kostroun/AP)

As Todd Bowles announced earlier in the week, Muhammad Wilkerson is inactive, the team announced.

The rest of the Jets inactives are: CB Derrick Jones, CB Jeremy Clark, RB Akeem Judd, LB Freddie Bishop, OT Ben Ijalana and C Jonotthan Harrison.

The Jets take on the Saints in New Orleans at 1 p.m.

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Sep 10, 2017; Orchard Park, NY, USA; New York Jets tight end Eric Tomlinson (83) warms up before the game against the Buffalo Bills at New Era Field. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports (Timothy T. Ludwig)
Sep 10, 2017; Orchard Park, NY, USA; New York Jets tight end Eric Tomlinson (83) warms up before the game against the Buffalo Bills at New Era Field. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports (Timothy T. Ludwig)

One of the few positives to emanate from the Jets 23-0 loss to the Broncos was TE Eric Tomlinson's competence as a long snapper. Tomlinson was forced into action after regular long snapper Thomas Hennessy went out injured.

"It's funny because when I walked up to him I said, 'Hey, man, you're up,'" Jets special teams coordinator Brant Boyer said, via Associated Press. "And typical Tomlinson, he looked up at me and said, 'I got you Boyer,' and gives me knuckles. He's that kind of guy, though, so he was great..."

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Aug 19, 2017; Detroit, MI, USA; New York Jets quarterback Josh McCown (15) quarterback Bryce Petty (9) and quarterback Christian Hackenberg (5) during the second quarter against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports (Tim Fuller)
Aug 19, 2017; Detroit, MI, USA; New York Jets quarterback Josh McCown (15) quarterback Bryce Petty (9) and quarterback Christian Hackenberg (5) during the second quarter against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports (Tim Fuller)

THE GAME: The Jets (5-9) at the New Orleans Saints (9-4) at the Superdome in New Orleans on Sunday, Dec. 17 at 1 p.m. ET.

THE WEATHER: It's a dome, so I wouldn't worry about it.

WHAT IT MEANS: Well, technically the Jets are alive...

Tags: Bryce Petty
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Jonas Schwartz and Willie Colon are frustrated after another loss in a game they were supposed to win. The guys discuss Josh McCown's broken left hand, and how it impacts the team going forward. Later, Jets linebacker Demario Davis joins the show to talk about his leadership as team captain, McCown's impact, and the rise of the team's young linebackers - Darron Lee and Jordan Jenkins.

Click below to listen

Tags: Darron Lee, Demario Davis, Jordan Jenkins
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New York Jets wide receiver Jermaine Kearse catches a pass during the second half against the Kansas City Chiefs at MetLife Stadium. (Ed Mulholland/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets wide receiver Jermaine Kearse catches a pass during the second half against the Kansas City Chiefs at MetLife Stadium. (Ed Mulholland/USA TODAY Sports)

Richard Sherman has kept tabs on former teammate Jermaine Kearse and went out of his way to praise the receiver. Sherman scribed a piece for The Players' Tribune called "Underrated Wide Receivers 101", highlighting who he believes to be underrated receivers in the league. He led with Kearse. 

The Jets acquired Kearse from the Seahawks, along with a second-round pick, for Sheldon Richardson just before the season started. Kearse has made 52 catches for 681 yards and 5 touchdowns this season-- all already career highs or on pace to set career highs. 

"It's safe to say that Jermaine is clutch," Sherman said. "And ridiculously underrated..."

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Vacc's 3 keys to Jets win 00:01:36
SNY NFL Insider Ralph Vacchiano gives his three keys to a Jets victory over the New Orleans Saints on Sunday.

SNY NFL Insider Ralph Vacchiano gives his three keys to a Jets victory over the New Orleans Saints on Sunday.

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Wilkerson not playing at Saints 00:02:19
Jeane Coakley and Ralph Vacchiano report from Jets practice where the team announced that Muhammad Wilkerson will not play this Sunday.
Tags: Muhammad Wilkerson

New York Jets defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson (96) celebrates after intercepting the ball, during the first half of an NFL football game against the Miami Dolphins, Sunday, Oct. 22, 2017, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky) (Lynne Sladky/AP)
New York Jets defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson (96) celebrates after intercepting the ball, during the first half of an NFL football game against the Miami Dolphins, Sunday, Oct. 22, 2017, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky) (Lynne Sladky/AP)

Jets DE Muhammad Wilkerson is out for Sunday's game against the game after he was benched for showing up late to the team facility Friday. 

Wilkerson will not travel with the team to New Orleans as it was a 'coaching decision,' according to head coach Todd Bowles. Wilkerson supposedly showed up to the facility "very late," a source told SNY's Ralph Vacchiano. This is the third straight year the 28-year-old has been benched for being late. 

This season, Wilkerson has been underperforming with only 3.5 sacks and 46 combined tackles. 

Tags: Brian Winters, Matt Forte, Muhammad Wilkerson
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Wilkerson will not play Sunday 00:03:02
The Daily News Live crew discusses Jets defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson not traveling to play in New Orleans this Sunday due to tardiness.

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. - Muhammad Wilkerson has no future with the Jets. He knows it and they know it. He'll be released long before his 2018 salary is guaranteed on March 16.

And really, there's no reason to wait that long anymore.

Wilkerson was punished by Jets coach Todd Bowles on Friday, after he showed up late -- very late -- to the team facility, according to a team source. Bowles immediately told the 28-year-old malcontent he wouldn't be traveling to New Orleans with the team for the game on Sunday. And according to one team source, his pseudo-suspension could last longer than that.

Tags: Muhammad Wilkerson, Ralph Vacchiano
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New York Jets defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson gestures after a play against the Buffalo Bills during the second half of an NFL football game, Thursday, Nov. 2, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun) (Bill Kostroun/AP)
New York Jets defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson gestures after a play against the Buffalo Bills during the second half of an NFL football game, Thursday, Nov. 2, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun) (Bill Kostroun/AP)

Jets DE Muhammad Wilkerson will not travel with the team to New Orleans to face the Saints on Sunday, head coach Todd Bowles said on Friday, saying it was a 'coaching decision' -- not injury-related.

Wilkerson was very late to the Jets' facility today, which is why he was benched, a source told SNY's Ralph Vacchiano, who says it wouldn't be a surprise if this isn't just a one-game punishment, either.

Earlier this month, a day after he benched Wilkerson for most of the first quarter because he showed up late to a team meeting, Bowles said he still considers the 28-year-old defensive end a team leader.

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Aug 26, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Bryce Petty (9) calls a play at the line during the third quarter of a preseason game against the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Aug 26, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Bryce Petty (9) calls a play at the line during the third quarter of a preseason game against the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

The Jets (5-8) face the Saints (9-4) on Sunday in New Orleans. Here's what's going on today…

Need to know

The Jets practice today at Florham Park and Todd Bowles should be providing an injury update later. SNY's Ralph Vacchiano will be attending practice this week. Follow @RVacchianoSNY on Twitter to keep up with all the latest Jets news and rumors…

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John Morton on quitting vs. DEN 00:00:31
Jets offensive coordinator John Morton admits to calling it quits in Sunday's loss to the Denver Broncos.

Jets OC John Morton said his team waved the white flag last Sunday against the Broncos, with his team trailing, 23-0, in the fourth quarter.

"Listen, the game was out of hand and I didn't want to let some bad stuff happen," Morton said. "At that time, I don't like to say, 'No mas,' but it was time to get out of there. They kicked our butts, they kicked our butts. Sometimes that happens in the National Football League."

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | ArchiveI know there are some people bothered by this, but I don't get it at all. Jets offensive coordinator John Morton gave an honest and reasonable answer to a question about why he wasn't being more aggressive with his play calling in the fourth quarter...

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Kerley blames ghost for PED's 00:05:09
On Loud Mouths, the guys fill in the blanks on hot topics including Manny Machado, Ian Kinsler, Jeremy Kerley's ghost and Star Wars.

Jets wide receiver Jeremy Kerley said he still wasn't sure how a banned substance in his system led to a four-game suspension and suggested it was because of a ghost.

"I don't know, a lot of ghosts around here," Kerley said, according to Newsday's Calvin Watkins. "Ghost put it in. You know the ghost of Christmas past."

Tags: Jeremy Kerley
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Alabama Crimson Tide offensive lineman Korren Kirven (Jason Getz/USA TODAY Sports)
Alabama Crimson Tide offensive lineman Korren Kirven (Jason Getz/USA TODAY Sports)

The Jets signed offensive tackle Korren Kirven to the practice squad and released tight end Zach Conque, the team announced Friday.

Kirven, an undrafted rookie out of Alabama, had signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers after the 2017 draft.

Conque was with the Jets' practice squad for three weeks after the Houston Texans waived/injured him in August.

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GEICO SportsNite: Jets' plan 00:02:06
On GEICO SportsNite, Ralph Vacchiano discusses how the Jets are preparing to face Drew Brees and the formidable New Orleans Saints.

After Josh McCown's season-ending injury, Bryce Petty has been pushed to center stage for the Jets and will be starting this Sunday in New Orleans. The Saints won't take the Jets' backup lightly, citing a lack of film on the former Baylor quarterback.

Publically, multiple members of the Saints' secondary have been respectful of Petty's ability.

"For me having been in this league for a while, it's actually scarier going against a guy you don't have a lot of film on..."

Tags: Bryce Petty
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4 Keys to beating the Saints 00:04:30
On Jets Game Plan, the crew discusses the keys to stopping Drew Brees and the red-hot New Orleans Saints this week.

On Jets Game Plan, the crew discusses the keys to stopping Drew Brees and the red-hot New Orleans Saints this week.


Aug 31, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Christian Hackenberg (5) (Ed Mulholland)
Aug 31, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets quarterback Christian Hackenberg (5) (Ed Mulholland)

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. - Bryce Petty will make his fifth career start for the Jets on Sunday in New Orleans because Josh McCown has a broken left hand and because, as Todd Bowles said, "Bryce is the next man up."

That's a nice, tidy coach-speak way of avoiding the obvious truth about that decision: Starting Petty makes very little sense at this point for the 5-8 Jets. They need to see Christian Hackenberg play...

Tags: Bryce Petty, Christian Hackenberg, Ralph Vacchiano
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Aug 19, 2017; Detroit, MI, USA; New York Jets quarterback Josh McCown (15) quarterback Bryce Petty (9) and quarterback Christian Hackenberg (5) during the second quarter against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports (Tim Fuller)
Aug 19, 2017; Detroit, MI, USA; New York Jets quarterback Josh McCown (15) quarterback Bryce Petty (9) and quarterback Christian Hackenberg (5) during the second quarter against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports (Tim Fuller)

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. - Josh McCown may be out for the season and unsigned for 2018, but he's not done helping the Jets young players just yet.

The 38-year-old quarterback was back on the practice field on Thursday, just two days after undergoing surgery on his broken left hand, and he will travel with the Jets to New Orleans this weekend for their game against the Saints on Sunday afternoon. There, according to Jets coach Todd Bowles, McCown will serve as a "player-coach" as quarterback Bryce Petty makes his first start of the year...

Tags: Bryce Petty, Josh McCown
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Nov 2, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets running back Matt Forte (22) celebrates his touchdown against the Buffalo Bills during the second half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Nov 2, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets running back Matt Forte (22) celebrates his touchdown against the Buffalo Bills during the second half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

Matt Forte (knee) missed practice again Thursday. The good news, though, is he was the only player who missed Wednesday's practice to sit out Thursday's as well.

All of CB Morris Claiborne (foot), RB Elijah McGuire (ankle), S Rontez Miles (hamstring), CB Rashard Robinson (not injury related) and G Brian Winters (abdomen, ankle) were limited participants Thursday after being unable to go on Wednesday. 

LB Bruce Carter (groin) and LS Thomas Hennessy (concussion) were also limited participants. 

The Jets travel to New Orleans to play the Saints this Sunday in Bryce Petty's  first start of the season.

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GEICO SportsNite: Petty to start 00:01:59
With Josh McCown sidelined due to a broken hand, Bryce Petty is motivated to prove his worth in the final three games of the season.

The Jets (5-8) face the Saints (9-4) on Sunday in New Orleans. Here's what's going on today…

Need to know

The Jets practice today at Florham Park and Todd Bowles should be providing an injury update later. SNY's Ralph Vacchiano will be attending practice this week. Follow @RVacchianoSNY on Twitter to keep up with all the latest Jets news and rumors…

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Dec 3, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets running back Matt Forte (22) runs the ball against Kansas City Chiefs corner back Darrelle Revis (24) during the first quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Dec 3, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets running back Matt Forte (22) runs the ball against Kansas City Chiefs corner back Darrelle Revis (24) during the first quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

As he has done for the last month, RB Matt Forte (knee) was on the sidelines during the Jets' practice on Wednesday. 

LB Mo Claiborne (foot), RB Eli McGuire (ankle), DB Rontez Miles (hamstring), OL Brian Winters (abdomen/ankle) and DB Rashard Robinson (excused) joined Forte as inactives.

LB Bruce Carter (groin) and LS Tom Hennessy (concussion) were limited.

Tags: Brian Winters, Elijah McGuire, Matt Forte, Morris Claiborne, Rontez Miles
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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

Jets LB Demario Davis has been a cornerstone of the team's defense this season, but it wasn't always that way. 

When returning to the Jets this offseason after a season with the Browns, fans and media crushed Davis, saying he wasn't worth bringing back after serving four previous season in Green & White. Davis didn't prove them wrong in the first two weeks of the season either as he struggled mightily on the field. 

Davis spoke with SNY's Jonas Schwartz and Willie Colon on "The Jet Stream Podcast" to talk about how he dealt with the pressure, and turned around his season...

Tags: Demario Davis
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Dec 31, 2016; Orlando, FL, USA; Louisville Cardinals quarterback Lamar Jackson (8) is sacked for a safety by LSU Tigers defensive end Arden Key (49) during the first half at Camping World Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports (Kim Klement)
Dec 31, 2016; Orlando, FL, USA; Louisville Cardinals quarterback Lamar Jackson (8) is sacked for a safety by LSU Tigers defensive end Arden Key (49) during the first half at Camping World Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports (Kim Klement)

The Jets will select LSU DE Arden Key with the tenth overall pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, predicts ESPN's Todd McShay.

Despite the Jets' need for a steady arm at the quarterback position, McShay points out their edge rushers need some improvement as well. This is why McShay can't see the Jets passing up on who he thinks is the most natural defensive end coming out of college this season...

CLICK BELOW TO SEE MCSHAY'S ANALYSIS ON KEY

Tags: Leonard Williams, Muhammad Wilkerson
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