Since the Jets haven't signed a free agent for me to scout in almost four weeks, I've been watching footage of some of the bottom-of-the-roster guys to try and get an insight into what kind of potential they have and whether any of them could realistically be expected to step into an important role in 2013.

Today, I'm going even deeper to take a look at some of the lesser-known players expected to be bottom-of-the-roster guys and not really expected to challenge for a place on the team. The Jets have several players with NFL preseason or, in some cases, regular season experience that we haven't considered in any detail yet on BGA, so I've been looking at the footage to see if there are any players who might have the potential to push for a roster spot.

After the jump, I look in detail at footage from over the last few years and give some background on some of these guys.

Bret Lockett, S, 6-1, 200

Our recent TJB podcast guest is one of the higher profile sleepers on the roster, mainly due to a well-publicized connection to Kim Kardashian. However, he's also played in 13 regular season games for the New England Patriots, including a handful of snaps on defense. These date back to 2009 though. He had gone undrafted in 2009 despite running a 4.45 forty at UCLA's pro day. In 2010, he missed the preseason with a chest injury and went onto injured reserve, then in 2011 he tore his groin in preseason and missed the entire season. He spent 2012 in the UFL.

Lockett saw extensive playing time at free safety in the 2009 preseason, registering eight tackles on defense and one on special teams. He also had another special teams tackle and a tackle for a loss negated by a penalty. He started one game, but six of his nine tackles came in the second half of games, against backups. In the regular season, he saw just five snaps on defense, at free safety in garbage time against the Titans - a 59-0 win in the snow. The only impact he made was to get in on a tackle for a loss, only to give up a 15 yard taunting penalty. He appeared in 12 other games on special teams only, registering seven tackles and a forced fumble. He made some good open field tackles and was able to beat his blocker to make the tackle on a couple of plays, but also was blocked out of a couple of plays and got called for two penalties. The forced fumble saw him strip the ball loose on a punt return, but the returner's team recovered. In 2011, prior to getting injured, he had one tackle on defense in preseason, a good open field stop downfield on a 13-yard run.

Bonus link: Here is Lockett's UFL highlight reel from this year, which does show some good hitting, open field tackling and special teams work.

Danny Lansanah, ILB, 6-1, 255

Lansanah is only a second year pro, although he is 27 having first entered the league in 2008. He was a guy I was intrigued by in that draft, due to his excellent size. He had been a first team all-Big East selection at UConn. However, after seeing action with the Packers in five games as a special teamer in his rookie season, he was unable to catch on with the Dolphins and Lions over the next few seasons and has been playing in the UFL for the last few years. Lansanah was pretty productive in the 2008 and 2009 preseasons, totalling 26 tackles including nine at or close to the line of scrimmage in 2009 alone. He also added a pass defensed.

In the 2008 regular season, he recorded two tackles on special teams, one of which saw him tackle the return man on a kickoff at the 13, despite being held. However, he did also have a missed block that led to his teammate being tackled.

Bonus link: Here's Lansanah's 2012 UFL highlight reel. This is less impressive than Lockett's featuring an interception on a tipped pass and some plays on special teams.

Titus Ryan, WR, 6-0, 200

Titus Ryan is even older than Lansanah - he just turned 29 last week. Ryan entered the league as an undrafted free agent in 2007 and was thought to have a lot of potential as a return man after having run a 4.28 forty yard dash at Alabama's pro day. He entered the league with the Chiefs, recording one catch for six yards in preseason as a rookie. After having failed to make the team, Ryan went to play in the Canadian Football League for a couple of years, after which he was picked up by the Cowboys where he stood out at minicamp and was thought to have a shot at making the team. In the first preseason game, he made an immediate impact, returning the opening kickoff 38 yards before being knocked out of bounds. However, he looked uncomfortable fielding a punt later on and then suffered a wrist injury that would end his chances. Dallas brought him back for 2011, only for a foot injury to again lead to him being off the team. He played in the UFL last season.

Bonus links: Check out Ryan's returning ability and his receiving skills on these two plays from the CFL.

Travis Tripucka, LS, 6-1, 240

Tripucka, the son of former NBA all-star Kelly Tripucka and the grandson of former NFL quarterback Frank Tripucka, was the backup long snapper for the Rams in the 2012 preseason. He snapped on three punts and three kicks (two of which were missed). If I am to nitpick, one of the snaps to the punter was wide, almost leading to a block and one of the missed field goals came on a snap where the holder had to reach for the ball before getting it down. Tripucka earns approximately $300K less than current Jets long snapper Tanner Purdum, but it is unlikely the Jets would release Purdum for financial reasons because they already paid him a $130K signing bonus on his two year deal.

Jacquies Smith, DE/OLB, 6-4, 260

Smith, undrafted out of Missouri, got some playing time with Miami in preseason last year, lining up exclusively as a right defensive end. He had a few good moments as a pass rusher, including one play where he beat Bruce Campbell (acquired by the Panthers in a trade for Mike Goodson) to the outside and got hold of Jimmy Clausen from behind, only for Clausen to shovel the ball forward for an incomplete pass, as Smith clapped his hands in frustration. Smith also beat his man to the outside on a play where Clausen was sacked by Isaako Aaitui, who the Jets signed last year (only for him to get hurt almost immediately). Smith was clearly teeing off at the line with an emphasis on getting pressure on the quarterback, because whenever the Panthers ran the ball, they were able to take him out of the play pretty much routinely. There was only one good moment that he had against the run - a play where he took on the fullback, forcing the running back to cut back inside where he was stopped.

Smith spent time with the CFL's Hamilton Tiger-Cats in 2012, but only recorded one tackle.

Ryan Quigley, P, 6-3, 188

Quigley was in camp with the Bears last year after having gone undrafted. When Adam Podlesh got hurt in preseason, Quigley made it onto the active roster for week one, but Podlesh recovered in time for the opener and Quigley was inactive and cut a few days later. His preseason numbers were not great (41.4 average, 39.3 net), but as regular BGA readers will know, I see ANPP (explained here) as a more accurate indication of punter performance than traditional numbers.

Quigley, buoyed by having six kicks inside the 20 and seven fair caught, ended up with an ANPP of 65% which is about average and certainly of an NFL-level standard. Robert Malone managed an above average 66.5% for the regular season last year, by way of a comparison. Quigley limited the punts returned to 34 yards on 16 kicks, 27 of which came on a play where the return man fumbled and Quigley himself came up with the recovery. One interesting wrinkle is that he kicked off once, landing the ball inside the five. That added versatility to be able to do a good job in an emergency could serve as a tie-breaker if he challenges Malone for the job in camp. Quigley also did well as a holder, especially in the Bears' win over the Redskins where he rescued a low snap to enable Robbie Gould to kick the game winning field goal from 57 yards out. He did have one punt blocked though, not that there was much he could have done about it.

Thomas Mayo, WR, 6-2, 205

Mayo has been making the most of his chance to get some quality reps at the OTA's due to all the injuries at wideout, although he was apparently at fault for the interception that Geno Smith threw on Wednesday, as the ball went through his hands. Mayo was unable to catch on with the Raiders last year and ended up playing in the Arena League. In preseason, he did get some playing time, but the only throw they made to him was a bubble screen where Terrelle Pryor threw the ball behind him and once he'd adjusted to make the catch, his momentum carried him to the outside rather than up the field, so he was blown up for a four yard loss. That play looked like it could have gone for decent yardage if the connection was timed better, because the slot receiver made a good block. However, we can't be sure if Mayo was at fault by turning for the ball while too far upfield.

JoJo Dickson, ILB, 6-1, 245

Dickson, who drew some praise from Kristian Dyer on Wednesday went undrafted out of Idaho in 2011 and joined the Jacksonville Jaguars, but was cut before preseason. They then re-signed him the following April, only to release him after a couple of weeks. The Browns picked him up and did give him some late game playing time in preseason last year. Dickson was used as a weakside OLB in the Browns' 4-3 scheme, although he came out of the game when the defense went to a nickel package. He was credited with one tackle, chasing the quarterback to the sideline and out of bounds having been in zone coverage for a one yard gain on third and long to force a field goal attempt. There were a couple of other plays where he was involved in the action - one saw him come across as the tight end broke a tackle, forcing the tight end to change direction and get tackled downfield, perhaps saving a touchdown. Dickson chased across to get in on that tackle. Another saw the running back fumble the ball and Dickson came up to down him in the backfield after he recovered it, although he was ruled down before that. Dickson also looked good covering a running back out to the flat and forcing the quarterback to go to a different option.

Vidal Hazelton, WR, 6-2, 209

Finally, Vidal Hazelton is a guy who was once thought to be an excellent prospect having teamed with Mark Sanchez at USC. However, he was slowed by an ankle injury in 2008 and transferred to Cincinnati, missing the 2009 season and losing momentum in the process. He then only ran a 4.62 forty at his pro day. Hazelton went undrafted and didn't make an impact with the Chargers in his rookie preseason (2011), but did get some opportunities in the following preseason with the Bengals. In the second game against the Falcons, he caught two short passes on consecutive plays, a screen pass where he was unable to beat the first man and a play where he stopped his route and held on to the ball on the outside despite a good hit from the defensive back. In the following game against the Colts, he had a nice 14-yard catch where he stopped his route on the outside again, but this time was able to turn it upfield for extra yardage. However, with a shot at making the team, they targeted him four times in the last preseason game and all four fell incomplete - one was a drop, one was broken up, one was high and behind him and the other one saw him slip over. He was also targeted one other time in the Colts game with the throw going behind him as there was obviously some kind of communication breakdown between him and the quarterback.

After the Bengals cut him, Hazelton spent the year on Tennessee's practice squad.

Bonus links: Hazelton is perhaps best known for this sensational catch while at USC. However, this clip shows some of his open field running skills, as he takes a Sanchez pass to the house in spectacular fashion.

Conclusions:

Of course, all of these players are considered extreme long shots to make the team this year, let alone make any kind of impact. However, there are some guys here who've been through camps before and therefore have an idea of what it takes to make it, so even if none of them end up on the team, they'll still hopefully push the guys who they go up against every day to get better.

While there wasn't anyone who stood out as having immense talent that has somehow gone unnoticed, there were flashes from each of these guys in their preseason cameos, so it will be interesting to see if they get a chance to play in preseason this year and can make some things happen again to turn some heads.

The three receivers - Mayo, Ryan and Hazelton - all benefit from the fact that not only is there no consensus top five at the moment, but there are also several injuries, giving guys like Mayo a chance for some extended reps. As we saw last year with Royce Pollard and Joseph Collins, wide receiver is one position where guys who are unlikely to make the team could be put in a position where they can get a chance to make some things happen.

At inside linebacker, the top four spots on the roster are presumably locked up (Harris, Davis, Mauga, Bellore) but then Dickson and Lansanah are the next men up, so any injuries there would presumably give one of these two an excellent chance to work with the second unit. Lansanah's special teams experience might make him a contender for a special teams role like Lance Laury or Larry Izzo have had in recent years with the Jets perhaps needing some leadership on that unit with their long time coach and captain both departing.

Safety is another position where the Jets currently seem to have roster spots there for the taking. While he might be the outsider in a battle for the fourth safety spot against guys like Rontez Miles, Jaiquawn Jarrett and maybe Donnie Fletcher (if they move him), Lockett's special teams play could force everyone in this battle to raise their game.

Special teams spots are always up for grabs, so although Robert Malone will enter camp as the favorite, if he falters Quigley might get a chance to impress. I think a change at long snapper is less likely, but you never know. There's no guarantee that Purdum will remain healthy.

Finally, Smith obviously needs to improve his run defense based on last year, if he wants to be a factor in a full time role. However, if he gets a chance to rush the passer in preseason, perhaps he'll make a case for a situational role. He'll be behind Ricky Sapp to start with, but Sapp has had problems staying healthy, so if he (or one of the other edge rushers) goes down, then maybe Smith will get his chance.

All in all, while these guys are all long shots to make the roster and some might not even make it to camp, maybe someone will get their chance and show they have enough promise to earn a role or even just a spot on the practice squad and a chance to develop towards a second look next year. If not, there's no harm done and at least they have a handful of guys that have been through the process.

Tags: BGA, Bent Double

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

 

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

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

 

 

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

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

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

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

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

Tags: Christian Hackenberg, Detroit Lions, Josh McCown
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New York Jets outside linebacker Lorenzo Mauldin in action against the Jacksonville Jaguars during the preseason game at MetLife Stadium. (Vincent Carchietta/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets outside linebacker Lorenzo Mauldin in action against the Jacksonville Jaguars during the preseason game at MetLife Stadium. (Vincent Carchietta/USA TODAY Sports)

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

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

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

Tags: Bilal Powell, Detroit Lions, Lorenzo Mauldin, Matt Forte, Quincy Enunwa
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GEICO SportsNite: Jets camp 00:03:01
Jeane Coakley talks to Muhammad Wilkerson about being one of the older, vocal leaders in the locker room at Jets camp.

 

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

 

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

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

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

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

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

 

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

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

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

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

Ralph Vacchiano, SNY.TV:

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

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

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

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

Ralph Vacchiano, SNY.TV:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

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

 

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Click below to listen

 

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

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

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

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

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

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

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

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

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

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 ( Adam Hunger)
( Adam Hunger)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

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

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

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

Tags: Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Chris Harper, Christian Hackenberg, Juston Burris, Ralph Vacchiano
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 (Noah K. Murray)
(Noah K. Murray)

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

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

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

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

 

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

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

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

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

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

 

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

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

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

Tags: Buster Skrine
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