Earlier this week, the Jets signed offensive lineman Hayworth Hicks off the Indianapolis Colts practice squad. He must therefore, by rule, remain on the Jets’ active roster for at least the next three weeks. Jets fans might not know too much about Hicks, so I’ve been looking at game footage in detail to investigate what he could bring to the table.

Hicks spent the preseason with the Colts after going undrafted in the 2012 draft. This followed a solid career at Iowa State, which saw him earn Second Team All-Big 12 honors. He didn’t make their final roster, but was added to the practice squad, where he remained until this week. The Jets had placed a waiver claim on him at the time, but they withdrew this when three other higher-priority claims were successful.

After the jump, I look in detail at footage from the preseason to evaluate some of his strengths and weaknesses.

Who is Hayworth Hicks?

Hicks is over 330 pounds and played guard in college, where he started 24 games. There was some talk that he was learning the center position, but in preseason he exclusively played at right guard. Reports on his preseason performances were generally favorable, but we’ll look at those in more detail further down.

Indianapolis used to run a zone blocking scheme, but switched to a man-scheme for this year, which should ensure Hicks will be prepared for Tony Sparano’s system. In recent weeks, the Colts have been incorporating more zone blocking and have seen some success in doing so. Presumably Hicks has been tasked with learning those plays, so that will also help his versatility in the event the Jets do something similar.

Iowa State actually plays a spread offense with man blocking, although they do use a lot of inside zone runs, like many man blocking teams. Once again, this should mean he would translate to the Jets’ system better than someone from a pure zone background, athough often spread offenses do have simpler blocking systems compared with NFL schemes.

2012 Preseason

As noted, in preseason, Hicks played right guard with the Colts. He was on the second unit for each of the last three games, after starting off on the third unit in the first game.

Week 1 – Rams

Just played the fourth quarter (14 snaps) …

- Rode his man down to the ground on the inside to set up a four yard run

- Opened a hole on the right side, with help from a double team from the RT for a nine yard run

- Drove a linebacker back at the second level, but the run went for no gain behind him

- In pass protection, he initially knocked his man back, but then let him get past him, although the pass was completed for a first down before the pressure got there

- Got a good surge on a straight-ahead block, but then lost leverage and allowed his man to get off his block

- Tried to leverage his guy to the outside, but ended up shoving him into the path of the runner

- Blocked his man to the ground

- Pulled to the right and whacked a DB at the second level

Not a bad first performance, although he wouldn’t have graded out too well. He was moving his opponents about but it wasn’t leading to a huge amount of success, although I would attribute this more to the line not really blocking well as a unit and running plays not developing fast enough. His one issue in pass protection was more down to the fact that the quarterback (a certain Drew Stanton) held the ball for quite a long time.

Week 2 – Steelers

Played the entire second half (34 snaps) …

- Let his man get off his block to assist on a tackle for a short gain

- Gave his man too much of a clean release on a screen pass

- Initially blocked his man in pass protection but then he looped around the outside for a clean run at the quarterback, although the throw was completed for a first down before the pressure arrived

- Blocked his man well in pass protection, although he would end up chasing the quarterback out to the sideline as he scrambled

- Blocked down and drove his man back to create a seam for a short gain

- Surged through the line and then made a block at the second level but the run went for a short gain behind him

- Just about managed to handle a bullrush long enough to enable a touchdown pass to be thrown. Driven back initially before stabilizing

- Pulled to the left to block the MLB but he read the cutback run up the middle and was able to beat the block to the inside and make the play

- Made what looked like it was supposed to be a pulling reach block going left, but the runner went to the inside instead of outside and therefore his man had inside leverage to make the play and he ended up getting called for a hold as he tried to prevent that

- Driven back by a bullrush in pass protection

- Surged forward and then tried to make a second level block but let his man get off it

- Flattened a guy at the second level enabling a run to be bounced outside

- OLB was unblocked and made a tackle in the backfield. It looked like it was the RT’s fault but it might have been Hicks who missed his assignment

- Pulled left and set the edge with the help of a double team block from the right sided fullback in a three back set

Hick was up and down here, but did show flashes of potential dominance. His blocking in space was pretty solid, but he didn’t always sustain his blocks. Some of his mistakes could be attributed partially to bad reads by the runners.

Week 3 – Redskins

Entered on the second possession of the third period, with over 10 minutes left and played the rest of the game (36 snaps) …

- Pulled left and was initially stood up by his man, but then countered to get a late surge and set up a short gain

- Sustained his block on the edge just well enough to allow the runner to break his man’s tackle in the hole

- Failed to pick up a delayed blitz in pass protection

- Pulled to the outside and rocked the OLB on the edge, setting up a run up the middle

- Appeared to miss his assignment in pass protection, leading to a QB hit

- Rocked the OLB again on a similar pulling block to the play mentioned above, but this time he bounced off to assist on the run for a short gain

- Was almost driven back into the QB on a bullrush, but just managed to regroup and hold him off

- Was seemingly taken by surprise on a run blitz, allowing his man to get off the block and force a fumble, although it was ruled down by contact by the replay booth

- Good second level block was inconsequential as the run went for a short gain behind him

- On 4th and goal from the two, his man almost made the stop, but he just about got enough of him to enable the touchdown to be scored

- Allowed a stunting DE to beat him to the QB but he was the second guy to get there, so he wouldn’t have been “credited” with giving up the pressure

Some signs of rawness here from Hicks, but he was never really badly beaten and did have some positive moments.

Week 4 – Bengals

Entered the game in the first with 2:25 to go on the third Colts possession and played the rest of the game although a nine minute Bengals drive in the third helped limit his total snap count to just 42 …

- Allowed a lineman to shoot the gap and make a tackle for a short gain

- Pulled left and had to dive to make contact, just doing enough to prevent a tackle in the backfield

- Drove his man laterally out of the play to set up a seven yard run

- Was beaten for a pressure as his man set him up to the outside and then made a duck under move to beat him on his left shoulder

- Pulled left and leveraged his man back to the inside to create the seam for a seven yard touchdown run. This was arguably Hicks’ best highlight and can be seen here (Hicks is number 61)

- Made a pulling block which he held well, enabling the runner to cutback for five. It looked like he could easily have been flagged for holding, but he perhaps deserves credit for keeping that on the clean side of legal

- Rode his man to the ground at the second level, allowing the run to be bounced outside for nine. Holding was called on the right tackle, where again it could potentially have been called on him

- Was beaten on the inside, but this was one of those plays where the whole line seemed to mess up so they probably screwed up the call or something. Two other guys were beaten worse than he was and the play was easily stuffed for a loss

- Made a surging block, although the ball was fumbled going up the middle

- Drove his man to the outside, setting up a short gain for the runner

Of the four, this was probably Hicks’ best game. He still made one or two mistakes but did have a positive impact on several runs.

Observations

Based on all the footage I watched, here was my take on what Hicks brings to the table, divided into categories:

Usage - As noted, Hicks only played at right guard.

Athletics Ability - As you can see from the breakdowns, Hicks was called upon to pull quite a lot and had some success doing so. For a big man, he is surprisingly light on his feet and appears to be pretty nimble.

Run Blocking - Like most young linemen (and fullbacks) Hicks’ biggest issue seems to be that he sometimes makes a block initially but lets his man get off the block to make a play. That’s an adjustment you have to make because it’s much harder to sustain blocks against NFL players. In space, he seems to be pretty good at finding his assignment and when he does lock onto a block, he seems to have the ability to leverage his man out of a play. His ability to pull will come in handy if he gets any playing time with the Jets, but one thing he didn’t show in preseason was any trap blocking up the middle, something he’d be expected to be able to do with the Jets. He did a pretty good job of drive blocking when asked to do so.

Pass Protection - Most of the time, Hicks was employed in a free safety role. In other words, the other four linemen would block their man and Hicks would remain free to pick up a delayed blitzer or help out if one of his teammates lost leverage. This is a good test of both his instincts and his ability to react and move into position laterally. Overall, he did a pretty good job of this, but there were one or two missed assignments.

When matched up one-on-one, he mostly held his own, only getting beaten for a pressure once. However, he was driven backwards by some bullrushes.

Attitude - It’s difficult to read too much into his demeanor because he wasn’t demonstrative and finishing blocks to (and beyond) the whistle like a Jason Smith, but there was nothing that stood out in terms of laziness, lack of effort or arguing with teammates or opponents. There were one or two mix-ups but, as ever, we can never be certain where the blame lies and it did seem like he appeared to get his assignment right most of the time.

Conclusions

Despite the fact Hicks drew rave reviews during the offseason, if I had been grading these games, it’s likely he’d have graded negatively for the most part. Having said that, he never looked overmatched and managed to avoid any horrible missed blocks leading to big plays or anything like that, so maybe he’s capable of filling in and holding his own even if he isn’t ready to dominate.

I’d liken this signing to the Austin Howard signing last season. Is Hayworth Hicks going to be ready to contribute this year? Probably not, unless he’s come on a long way over the last few months. However, it gets a guy into the system that has obvious potential and could be ready to contribute by next year, when the Jets’ guard situation is in flux with both starters out of contract.

Unless Brandon Moore is hurt, or the Jets fall out of contention, I wouldn’t expect to see Hicks on the field this season. In fact, even if either or both of those things happen, Caleb Schlauderaff would probably be the first to get an opportunity. Hicks could theoretically be in the mix with Schlauderaff and Ducasse to flesh out the roster at the guard position next year.

Tags: BGA, Editorial Aside, Bent Double

Sep 17, 2017; Oakland, CA, USA; New York Jets linebacker Dylan Donahue (49) before the game against the Oakland Raiders at Oakland Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports (Stan Szeto)
Sep 17, 2017; Oakland, CA, USA; New York Jets linebacker Dylan Donahue (49) before the game against the Oakland Raiders at Oakland Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports (Stan Szeto)

Dylan Donahue feels fortunate to have a second chance.

At football. And, most of all, at life.

The New York Jets linebacker knew he needed to make some major changes this offseason after making a decision that nearly cost him everything.

Tags: Dylan Donahue
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 (Noah K. Murray)
(Noah K. Murray)

It hasn't been the start LB Lorenzo Mauldin wanted for his NFL career. 

The former 2015 third-rounder had two inconsistent seasons to begin his time with the Jets, and last season wasn't much better with season-ending surgery to repair his back. 

So, entering 2018 with just one year left on his rookie contract, Mauldin knows what he is playing for at this point. 

Tags: Lorenzo Mauldin
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 (Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray)
(Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray)

When the Jets drafted QB Sam Darnold, it appeared inevitable that their former second-rounder, QB Christian Hackenberg, was the odd man out with four quarterbacks on the roster. 

That is why Jets fans probably weren't surprised to hear Hackenberg was traded to the Raiders Monday for a 2019 conditional seventh-round draft pick. And they also shouldn't be surprised to hear head coach Todd Bowles' reasoning on the matter as well.

"We have three quarterbacks. Obviously, we drafted Sam in the first. We like Teddy (Bridgewater). We like Josh (McCown). We just had one too many to get all of them reps, so we held him out today just because we had things in the works in case something happened," Bowles said after the team's first OTA on Tuesday. "So we just wanted to go with the three quarterbacks that we have and let these guys battle it out."

Tags: Christian Hackenberg, Josh McCown, Sam Darnold, Teddy Bridgewater, Scott Thompson
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Daily News Live: NFL's new rule 00:04:34
The Daily News Live panel discusses the NFL owners' new national anthem policy and Jets owner Christopher Johnson's plan to resist it.

In the wake of the NFL's new national anthem policy, which requires all team and league personnel on the field "to stand and show respect for the flag and the anthem" or stay in the locker room or another inside area until the anthem is completed, Jets owner Christopher Johnson said he would pay any fines the team gets if it happens.

In the new policy, which the NFLPA immediately fired back at, it says those who violate the policy will receive "appropriate discipline" from the commissioner. 

"I do not like imposing any club-specific rules," Johnson told Bob Glauber of Newsday. "If somebody [on the Jets] takes a knee, that fine will be borne by the organization, by me, not the players. I never want to put restrictions on the speech of our players. Do I prefer that they stand? Of course. But I understand if they felt the need to protest. There are some big, complicated issues that we're all struggling with, and our players are on the front lines. I don't want to come down on them like a ton of bricks, and I won't. There will be no club fines or suspensions or any sort of repercussions. If the team gets fined, that's just something I'll have to bear."

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New York Jets players and coaching staff lock arms during the national anthem before the game against the Miami Dolphins at MetLife Stadium. (Kyle Terada/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets players and coaching staff lock arms during the national anthem before the game against the Miami Dolphins at MetLife Stadium. (Kyle Terada/USA TODAY Sports)

The NFL announced a new national anthem policy on Wednesday, requiring all team and league personnel on the field "to stand and show respect for the flag and the anthem."

That policy, which stemmed from many players kneeling in protest last season for social justice reasons, was immediately challenged by the NFLPA, which issued a statement saying it would "review the new 'policy' and challenge any aspect of it that is inconsistent with the collective bargaining agreement."

In its statement, the NFLPA says the NFL "chose to not consult the union" while developing the new policy, and said that the vote by NFL club CEOs "contradicts the statements made to our player leadership by Commissioner Roger Goodell and the Chairman of the NFL's Management Council John Mara about the principles, values, and patriotism of our League."

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 (Glenn Andrews)
(Glenn Andrews)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

When the Jets claimed former Patriots offensive tackle Antonio Garcia last week, it was one of the more interesting moves off the offseason. Garcia was selected with the 85th overall pick in the third round of last year's draft, but the Patriots have opted to give up on him already after a challenging rookie season.

For the Jets, it's a low-risk move to pick up a player with untapped potential, and could prove to be great value as he will remain on his rookie deal for three more years. If the move doesn't work out, the Jets won't owe Garcia any money or bear any kind of a cap hit, so they have little to lose.

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Bowles talks Hackenberg 00:00:32
Jets head coach Todd Bowles talks about Christian Hackenberg being traded to the Raiders, and why the QB struggled with the Jets.

The Jets have traded QB Christian Hackenberg to the Raiders for a conditional seventh-round draft pick in 2019, head coach Todd Bowles announced on Tuesday. 

"We did everything we could," Bowles said about working with Hackenberg. "Sometimes it just doesn't work out."

Bowles added that Hackenberg was held out of OTAs on purpose on Tuesday in case a deal involving him was reached. Hackenberg had been lost in the shuffle in the Jets' QB logjam, with Josh McCown, Sam Darnold, and Teddy Bridgewater ahead of him on the depth chart. 

Tags: Christian Hackenberg
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Darnold in action at Jets OTAs 00:00:37
Check out Sam Darnold, Teddy Bridgewater, Quincy Enunwa and more in action at Jets OTAs on Tuesday in Florham Park.

The Jets took the field in Florham Park on Tuesday to kick off their first OTA session leading up to training camp in June. 

Of course, the biggest storyline heading into the new year for Gang Green is what will Sam Darnold's role be in his rookie season. Here he is already getting work in as practice begins.

CLICK BELOW TO SEE VIDEO

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Washington Redskins' Terrelle Pryor carries the ball during an NFL football game against the Los Angeles Rams Sunday, Sept. 17, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
		  (Jae C. Hong/AP)
Washington Redskins' Terrelle Pryor carries the ball during an NFL football game against the Los Angeles Rams Sunday, Sept. 17, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong) (Jae C. Hong/AP)

Jets WR Terrelle Pryor was one of the most notable players missing at the team's first OTA on Tuesday, and it wasn't because he didn't want to show up. 

Pryor, who had ankle surgery last November, has reportedly suffered another ankle injury this offseason, per the Daily News' Manish Mehta. 

The 28-year-old converted receiver played in just nine games last season with the Redskins before a season-ending ankle injury ruined his one-year, "prove it" deal in Washington. He signed another with the Jets this offseason worth $4.5 million.

Tags: Terrelle Pryor
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New York Jets tight end Chris Herndon during New York Jets rookie mini camp at Atlantic Health Training Center. (Noah K. Murray/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets tight end Chris Herndon during New York Jets rookie mini camp at Atlantic Health Training Center. (Noah K. Murray/USA TODAY Sports)

The Jets signed fourth-round pick Chris Herndon, a tight end out of Miami (Fla.), on Monday, leaving first-round pick Sam Darnold as New York's only unsigned draftee.

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 (Stan Szeto)
(Stan Szeto)

The Jets had a boatload of cap space as well as the No. 3 overall draft pick to work with this offseason. And LB Darron Lee thinks the moves made using those resources have looked good thus far.

The most notable of the acquisitions made by GM Mike Maccagnan include CB Trumaine Johnson, LB Avery Williamson, and first-round draft pick QB Sam Darnold. These three players are the crucial chess pieces Lee thinks will help them now and in the future.

"This is a game of chess, not checkers," Lee told Jets.com's Eric Allen. "Adding those important pieces like Tru, Avery, and Sam is huge. It has us going in the right direction in my opinion, but implementing those guys in our brotherhood and our standard in what we have here is huge. Seeing how they're abiding by it also and they're jelling in smoothly with it -- it makes you excited. It can't help but make you excited because they're buying in."

Tags: Avery Williamson, Trumaine Johnson, Darron Lee
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NFL commissioner Roger Goodell broke his silence about the legalization of sports betting that the United States Supreme Court voted in favor for on May 14.

This enormously impacts the professional sporting world as Congress could now regulate sports betting if they wish to do so. However, if they elect not to, each State is allowed to act on its own in implementing their own system.

No matter what happened, Goodell's top priority is making sure that the integrity of the game continues to flourish moving forward with the ruling...

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Nov 26, 2016; East Hartford, CT, USA; Tulane Green Wave cornerback Parry Nickerson (17) returns his interception against the Connecticut Huskies in the second quarter at Rentschler Field. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports (David Butler II)
Nov 26, 2016; East Hartford, CT, USA; Tulane Green Wave cornerback Parry Nickerson (17) returns his interception against the Connecticut Huskies in the second quarter at Rentschler Field. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports (David Butler II)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

With the first of their three sixth-round picks in last month's draft, the Jets selected Tulane cornerback Parry Nickerson. This regime has already brought in several young cornerbacks, but none of them have managed to separate themselves from the pack.

Does Nickerson's skill-set give him a chance to eventually become the home-grown starter they've been trying to develop?

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North Squad defensive tackle Nathan Shepherd, of Fort Hays State, runs drills during the North team's practice for Saturday's Senior Bowl NCAA college football game in Mobile, Ala., Wednesday, Jan. 24, 2018. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)
North Squad defensive tackle Nathan Shepherd, of Fort Hays State, runs drills during the North team's practice for Saturday's Senior Bowl NCAA college football game in Mobile, Ala., Wednesday, Jan. 24, 2018. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

The Jets have signed DT Nathan Shepherd, who they drafted 72nd overall last month out of Fort Hays State.

Shepherd was an Division II All-America selection in his 2016 and 2017 seasons. Last season, he tallied 38 tackles (12.5 for loss) and four sacks. 

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive: If you're a team like the Jets, still in the beginning stages of a total rebuild, you can take a chance on raw players like Nathan Shepherd, a Canadian who was a smallish linebacker in high school before growing into an NFL-caliber defensive tackle at Division II Fort Hays (Kan.) State.

Tags: Muhammad Wilkerson, Sheldon Richardson
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GEICO SportsNite: Jets charity 00:01:47
The New York Jets hosted the "Taste of the Jets" event to help raise money for the Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation.

The New York Jets hosted the "Taste of the Jets" event to help raise money for the Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation. 


New York Jets first round pick Sam Darnold works out during NFL rookie camp, Friday, May 4, 2018, in Florham Park, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) (AP)
New York Jets first round pick Sam Darnold works out during NFL rookie camp, Friday, May 4, 2018, in Florham Park, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) (AP)

When recently retired Cowboys TE Jason Witten watches Sam Darnold, he sees similarities between the no. 3 overall pick and former Cowboys QB Tony Romo. 

Romo and Darnold share the ability to thrive even when the scripted play goes awry. Romo made a career out of extending plays and Darnold earned a similar reputation while at USC.

"He's calm, he's got this poise. He reminds me a little bit of Tony Romo, the way he creates plays," Witten said...

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New York Jets first round draft pick Sam Darnold works out during NFL rookie camp, Saturday, May 5, 2018, in Florham Park, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) (Julio Cortez/AP)
New York Jets first round draft pick Sam Darnold works out during NFL rookie camp, Saturday, May 5, 2018, in Florham Park, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) (Julio Cortez/AP)

Former USC offensive coordinator Tee Martin explained on The Jet Stream podcast Wednesday why Sam Darnold will be a great fit for the Jets.

"Sam is a great fit," Martin said. "Just going back to how he was recruited, when we first got to know him -- he was a guy that was a linebacker and played some wide receiver. Point guard on the basketball team. When he dropped back and started throwing a few passes, we were like 'this kid can throw the ball.'"

And the way Darnold threw the ball changed how USC viewed him...

Tags: Sam Darnold
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New York Jets first round pick Sam Darnold works out during NFL rookie camp, Friday, May 4, 2018, in Florham Park, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) (AP)
New York Jets first round pick Sam Darnold works out during NFL rookie camp, Friday, May 4, 2018, in Florham Park, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) (AP)

Jonas Schwartz and Willie Colon are back for a special edition of The Jet Stream podcast where they take a deep dive into the Jets' newest quarterback, Sam Darnold. The guys chat with Sam's former offensive coordinator from USC, Tee Martin, about the kid's emergence in college and how he compares to Peyton Manning. Later, Sam's best friend and former USC teammate, Jake Russell, joins the show to discuss what he's like off the field and his competitiveness on it.

Click below to listen...

Tags: Sam Darnold
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Aug 31, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets wide receiver Robby Anderson (11) during second half against Philadelphia Eagles at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Aug 31, 2017; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets wide receiver Robby Anderson (11) during second half against Philadelphia Eagles at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

Robby Anderson's felony resisting arrest with violence charge stemming from an incident at an event in Miami in May, 2017 will be dropped, his attorney, Ed O'Donnell told the NFL Network's Mike Garafolo.

During the incident, Anderson allegedly fought with arresting officers.

While Anderson's 2017 issue will be resolved, he is still dealing with his recent reckless driving arrest.

Tags: Robby Anderson
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Oct 29, 2017; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bengals running back Joe Mixon (28) is tackled by Indianapolis Colts defensive end Henry Anderson (96) during the first half at Paul Brown Stadium. Mandatory Credit: David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports (David Kohl)
Oct 29, 2017; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Cincinnati Bengals running back Joe Mixon (28) is tackled by Indianapolis Colts defensive end Henry Anderson (96) during the first half at Paul Brown Stadium. Mandatory Credit: David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports (David Kohl)

On day three of the draft, the Jets opted to trade a seventh-round pick for former Colts defensive lineman Henry Anderson. However, this move has flown under the radar somewhat with the focus on the players brought in via the draft.  

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 (Kirby Lee)
(Kirby Lee)

The Jets still have some money to spend, which is why they will be hosting free-agent S Kenny Vaccaro this week at their facility, per the Daily News' Manish Mehta.

Vaccaro was drafted 15th overall by the Saints back in 2013, where he has spent the last five season. His best year came in 2015 when he totaled 104 tackles, three sacks, one forced fumble, one fumble recovery, and five passes defended. 

Last season, the 27-year-old tallied 79 tackles, one sack, one interception, and one forced fumble over 14 games. 

Tags: Jamal Adams, Marcus Maye
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Connecticut Huskies defensive lineman Folorunso Fatukasi participates in workout drills during the 2018 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. (Brian Spurlock/USA TODAY Sports)
Connecticut Huskies defensive lineman Folorunso Fatukasi participates in workout drills during the 2018 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. (Brian Spurlock/USA TODAY Sports)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

The Jets had back-to-back picks in the sixth round of last month's draft, and they used the second of them to select defensive lineman Folorunso Fatukasi with the No. 180 pick. Let's provide some insight into what Fatukasi brings to the table and how he might fit in should he make the team.

Fatukasi is a player whose run-stuffing abilities have stood out over the past four seasons with UConn. He's strong at the point of attack, can get off blocks to make plays in the running game and can create penetration either with his strength or quickness.

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South squad offensive tackle Antonio Garcia of Troy battles defensive end Tanoh Kpassagnon of Villanova in a blocking drill during Senior Bowl practice at Ladd-Peebles Stadium. (Glenn Andrews/USA TODAY Sports)
South squad offensive tackle Antonio Garcia of Troy battles defensive end Tanoh Kpassagnon of Villanova in a blocking drill during Senior Bowl practice at Ladd-Peebles Stadium. (Glenn Andrews/USA TODAY Sports)

The Jets claimed former Patriots offensive lineman Antonio Garcia off waivers and cut kicker Nick Rose, the team announced on Monday.

Garcia, 24, was a third-round pick last season but did not appear in a game after he had reportedly developed blood clots in his lungs, according to the Boston Herald's Jeff Howe.

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A general view of a New York Jets helmet and an NFL football during the game between the Buffalo Bills and the New York Jets at Ralph Wilson Stadium. (Kevin Hoffman)
A general view of a New York Jets helmet and an NFL football during the game between the Buffalo Bills and the New York Jets at Ralph Wilson Stadium. (Kevin Hoffman)

Former Jets coach Chuck Knox, who was paramount in the Jets drafting Hall of Fame QB Joe Namath, died Saturday at 86. 

Knox started his vast coaching career with the Jets in 1963 as part of Weeb Ewbank's first Jets staff. Knox was big on the run game, which awarded the nickname of "Ground Chuck."

However, he saw something in Namath during his time at the University of Alabama, and knew the Jets needed him...

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Daily News Live: Sports gambling 00:03:44
Eric Chemi of CNBC joins Daily News Live to discuss the legalization of sports gambling and the ramifications of this newly amended bill.

The United States Supreme Court struck down a 25-year old law on Monday that had basically prevented all states except Nevada from having legalized sports gambling. "The legalization of sports gambling requires an important policy choice, but the choice is not ours to make," the Supreme Court announced. "Congress can regulate sports gambling directly, but if it elects not to do so, each State is free to act on its own."

The ruling was an enormous immediate victory for the state of New Jersey, which could have a gambling venue open in Monmouth Park within a few weeks, according to the NY Post. There will be a press conference in Monmouth Park on Monday at 1 p.m. Aside from New Jersey, The Post notes that New York and Illinois are among roughly 15 other states who have "introduced bills to legalize and regulate sports betting tied to the Supreme Court outcome." 

The NBA and MLB have been preparing for Monday's potential outcome, reports Brian Windhorst of ESPN, who said each league had hired lobbying firms, submitted written statements, and sent executives to testify in statehouses. Windhorst added that every professional sports league had been involved, but with the NBA and MLB at the forefront...

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Oct 15, 2017; Landover, MD, USA; Washington Redskins center Spencer Long (61) lines up against the San Francisco 49ers at FedEx Field. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports (Geoff Burke)
Oct 15, 2017; Landover, MD, USA; Washington Redskins center Spencer Long (61) lines up against the San Francisco 49ers at FedEx Field. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports (Geoff Burke)

Jets C Spencer Long is ready for an injury-free 2018 season with his new team.

Last season, Long was only able to make six starts for the Redskins due to a knee injury and was placed on IR in November. The ailment plaguing the 2014 third-round pick was rooted in a chronic quad issue which was corrected this offseason by surgery and an improved regiment.

"It was basically like a fraying rope," Long said...

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May 4, 2018; Florham Park, NJ, USA; New York Jets running back Trenton Cannon (40) during New York Jets rookie mini camp at Atlantic Health Training Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
May 4, 2018; Florham Park, NJ, USA; New York Jets running back Trenton Cannon (40) during New York Jets rookie mini camp at Atlantic Health Training Center. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

With their final pick of the 2018 draft, the Jets selected Virginia State running back Trenton Cannon.

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New York Jets offensive tackle Kelvin Beachum against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium. (Aaron Doster/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets offensive tackle Kelvin Beachum against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium. (Aaron Doster/USA TODAY Sports)

In the post-draft Honeymoon period, most fans, players and media alike are heaping praise on QB Sam Darnold. But Darnold's teammate T Kelvin Beachum wants to wait before he fully joins the fray. 

Beachum started all 16 games for the Jets last season, blocking for Josh McCown and Bryce Petty. At some point this season, he may be blocking for Darnold. 

"I've heard that he is a great person," Beachum said via Darryl Slater of NJ.com. "I'm excited to get him in that room." 

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New York Jets first round draft pick Sam Darnold works out during NFL rookie camp, Saturday, May 5, 2018, in Florham Park, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) (Julio Cortez/AP)
New York Jets first round draft pick Sam Darnold works out during NFL rookie camp, Saturday, May 5, 2018, in Florham Park, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez) (Julio Cortez/AP)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive: The Jets have four quarterbacks on their roster, which seems like one too many. They cut Bryce Petty last week to clear at least a little room on their depth chart, but they still have another move to make. Or maybe two.

Whatever they end up doing, the Jets' quarterback situation isn't as clear cut as some think, from the identity of the Opening Day starter all the way down to the likely odd-man out. As Todd Bowles said last weekend, the Jets are "open to anything right now" -- especially at quarterback.

"We're going to let it all play out before make those kinds of decisions," he said.

Tags: Christian Hackenberg, Josh McCown, Sam Darnold, Teddy Bridgewater, Ralph Vacchiano
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 (Noah K. Murray)
(Noah K. Murray)

For some draft picks, the process of becoming acclimated to a new environment is quicker given their circumstances.

Saquon Barkley of the Giants was born in Brooklyn, and didn't live far from his new home even when he was in Pennsylvania. Shaquem Griffin of the Seahawks may be making a shift from Florida to Seattle, but he has his twin brother Shaquill Griffin to guide him through the process.

Sam Darnold, on the other hand, is transitioning from sunny, laidback Los Angeles to the hustle and bustle of New York City without someone to lean on, or understanding of how this side of the states operates. In fact, he just visited the Big Apple for the first time only a few weeks ago.

Tags: Sam Darnold, Christian Hackenberg, Josh McCown
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