Since the season ended, I've been charting a series of 2007 games, which - somewhat unexpectedly - gave me a different perspective on some of the issues affecting this current Jets team.

Today, I'll be reflecting on Brian Winters' rookie season by looking back to 2007, where the Jets had similar problems filling their left guard position.

Winters started the last 12 games of 2013 and struggled, although he did show some signs of improvement over the last month. Even though he felt he played well, even Winters himself admitted there was plenty of room for growth. After the jump, a look back at 2007 and what this might tell us about how far Winters has to go.

2007 Review

The Jets' apparent mishandling of the left guard position was a big story back in 2007. In retrospect, the 4-12 Jets probably wouldn't have been a playoff contender even with competent play from the left guard spot, but their efforts to fill the position on the cheap failed miserably. The cap-strapped Jets refused to give Pete Kendall a pay rise and - although their cap situation was much better in 2008, enabling them to sign Alan Faneca to shore up the position - the competition between several cheaper options did not go well.

In preseason, it looked like rookie Jacob Bender - a converted tackle - had won the job. The sixth round pick started the last two preseason games. However, on opening day, the Jets shocked everyone by announcing Bender as inactive - a healthy scratch - and putting Adrien Clarke, who had been playing with the second unit, in as the starter. Bender would make just two appearances that year, only seeing action on special teams. They would be his only two NFL games.

Clarke would go on to start the first 14 games and was the target of Wayne Hunter levels of vitriol from the Jets fanbase as he struggled each week. Clarke had started four games with the Eagles in 2005, but then missed all of the 2006 season after getting back surgery and signed a low-level deal with the Jets. He was finally benched for the last two games of the season and never played in the NFL again.

During Winters' struggles last season, I was asked several times if he was struggling as badly as Clarke did. Now that I've looked back on the 2007 season, we can make a comparison between the two.

Comparison between Clarke and Winters

In the end, Winters played 771 snaps in 2013 and Clarke played 776 in 2007*, so we have two equivalent sample sizes to make a direct comparison. (*These and other stats included in this article are exclusively provided by Pro Football Focus).

Pass Protection

Let's first consider pass protection numbers. Winters gave up a league high 10 sacks, six hits and 15 pressures. Clarke only surrendered four sacks, 10 hits and 14 pressures. That sounds like Winters did a lot worse than Clarke. Indeed, their pass protection grade (which takes into account not just the rate at which pressure was surrendered but also how badly beaten the player was when he did surrender pressure) was worse for Winters (-14.6) than for Clarke (-9.1).

However, let's add some context to these numbers. Winters was protecting a rookie, who struggled at times with blitz recognition and holding the ball too long in the pocket. Clarke was protecting Chad Pennington for half the time, a player who was excellent at making decisions and checking down when required. Of course, Clarke was also protecting Kellen Clemens for half the time, a less experienced player seeing regular action for the first time. However, can we make an argument that Clarke's job was easier?

When you look again at the numbers, Winters surrendered 31 total pressures and Clarke surrendered 28. That's not too far off. The main difference between these numbers was that a much higher percentage of those pressures for Winters resulted in sacks, which you could certainly attribute, at least in part, to the quarterback. We can even explore the time in the pocket numbers to account for this. Pennington's time to throw was 2.66 seconds and Clemens' was not that far behind at 2.77 seconds. Smith, on the other hand, threw the ball after 3.03 seconds on average. While that 3-to-4 tenths of a second might not sound like much, it could certainly be the difference between a sack and a hit/pressure on some plays. It's the difference between being in the middle of the pack and being right near the top in terms of that time to throw number.

In addition to the rate at which pressure was converted to sacks, we can also add context to the total amount of pressure each of them surrendered. Again from PFF's time in pocket numbers, we can see that over half (51.2%) of Pennington's throws were released before 2.5 seconds were up. This is not surprising, having watched the footage, because there were a lot of plays where Pennington released the pass almost immediately as he recognized a blitz off the edge. Pennington saw good success on these plays, which usually netted an easy 6-to-8 yard gain.

Perhaps surprisingly, Clemens threw within 2.5 seconds an even higher percentage of the time (53.5%) than Pennington. By contrast, Smith only threw within 2.5 seconds just 40.7% of the time. So, even though Winters and Clarke played an equivalent number of snaps, Winters had to sustain his block for longer more often than Clarke did, so we can say his job in pass protection was more difficult and the fact he gave up a few extra pressures might be attributable to this. We can also say that changes in the gameplan and improvements in the decision making and blitz recognition from the quarterback position could have a positive effect on his 2014 numbers in addition to any improvements he makes himself.

For the record, while you might expect Clarke's pass protection numbers to be better when he was protecting Pennington that when he was protecting Clemens, that couldn't be further from the truth. He played seven games in front of each, but with Pennington in there, Clarke gave up four sacks, 10 hits and nine pressures. However, with Clemens in there, he only gave up five pressures (with no hits or sacks). Maybe this means the quarterback doesn't have as much of an effect as suggested above, but then again, Clemens was getting rid of the ball quickly even more often than Pennington.

Another interesting comparison to make is the fact that Winters was between the veteran Nick Mangold and D'Brickashaw Ferguson, whereas Clarke was in-between the same two players while they were in just their second season. While neither would receive pro bowl recognition that year (Mangold was a pro bowler for the first time the following year and Ferguson the year after that), you could conceivably make an argument that they were closer to their peak in either 2007 or 2013. Let's call it a wash.

For each of them, there was an improvement later in the season. Winters gave up just one sack, two hits and three pressures over the last four games. In fact, he only gave up one pressure in the last two games. Clarke gave up no sacks and just two hits and one pressure over his last five games. There was one key reason behind that, but we'll address that later on. It's obviously encouraging that Winters had better numbers in the final month, but I don't think it's a coincidence that this was where Smith started to make better decisions in the pocket too, often taking off at the first sign of pressure.

Penalties

In 2007, Clarke had just two penalties, whereas Winters had seven in 2013. Maybe some of the penalties on Winters are again attributable to him having to hold his block for a longer time than necessary, but two of the seven were false starts. One was actually a penalty for ineligible receiver downfield where you could definitely attribute that to Smith getting rid of the ball too late. The rest were holding penalties. This is definitely an area Winters will look to improve upon, especially with Breno Giacomini and Willie Colon - each of whom gets flagged a lot - expected to man the right side of the line.

Run blocking

Having watched the footage, it was obvious that both players really struggled. Clarke is bigger and less mobile, but their usage within the two schemes was pretty similar.

According to PFF ratings, the grade was again worse for Winters (-17.4) than for Clarke (-11.1). What I would say about Clarke is that he seemed to have more positive moments where he did put it all together earlier in the year. Winters finally started to do that in the last few games. Clarke had a couple of impressive blocks in the week 13 blowout win over Miami, including one where Leon Washington took a direct snap and ran for an 18-yard score after Clarke had driven his man out of the play to create a huge lane.

There's not much more to say here, though. Both were very inconsistent, with Winters perhaps being the reason a play failed more often than Clarke was because he had better talent around him.

The rotation system

As noted above, Clarke saw real improvements in his pass protection numbers towards the end of the year. His run blocking also improved, in similar fashion. The major difference in those final five games was that Clarke started splitting time with Will Montgomery. Montgomery did a pretty decent job, getting between a third and a half of the available reps over the next five weeks. He'd go on to start the last two games and become a full-time starter for Washington. The more interesting aspect is the effect splitting reps had on Clarke.

As noted above, Winters actually graded out worse than Clarke in terms of run and pass blocking (although we've discussed some of the possible reasons for this). However, had Clarke continued to play the way he did in those first nine games, he was actually on course to be worse than Winters.

This begs the question: Would Winters have played with more consistency if he had split reps rather than being relied upon to play full time? As I noted a few years ago, when Vladimir Ducasse split reps with Matt Slauson in 2012, the offense didn't miss a beat and even performed marginally better in the running game. However, Ducasse's performance in 2013 perhaps showed he wasn't ready for a full-time role.

We know that some offensive line coaches don't like rotation schemes, presumably because they think it prevents the line from gelling as quickly as you'd like. However, when players are struggling, it would seem that there is a benefit to this in terms of enabling each player to focus on a smaller workload, remain focused and fresh and maybe even receive feedback or advice during those series where they have been taken out. You could also perhaps suggest that changing the guards around every now and again could make it more difficult for defensive linemen to figure out the best way to beat them. It also provides motivation by creating a direct competition and giving one of them an opportunity to outshine the other and re-earn a full-time role.

I said it at the time, but I think a rotation scheme could have been a positive for both Winters and Ducasse. The hope is that Winters will benefit in the long run from the time he saw in 2013 (and let's not forget he had a preseason ankle injury to set him back), but maybe if he was making positive contributions sooner, this would have had a positive effect confidence-wise.

Conclusions

It certainly makes for an interesting comparison to investigate the differences and similarities between these two. While it doesn't bode well that Clarke was out of the league after the 2007 season, it's clear there were some important reasons why Winters struggled in similar fashion, not least of which being that he was a rookie learning a new position.

In terms of other recent young linemen who had poor seasons but then ended the season on an upward curve, there are several examples of players who did not continue that momentum into the next season. Jason Pinkston couldn't lock down a starting job, Will Rackley had another bad season and was released, Levi Brown got injured twice and Bobby Massie didn't start the following year and is battling for a starting role this year. However, I would say that the experience Winters gained - even though he did struggle - puts him in a better situation to start in year two than someone like Matt Slauson, who barely played at all as a rookie.

Winters has to improve in 2014, because if he doesn't, it's not going to be difficult to find someone who can do a better job. While he might have had a longer leash last year, I don't think there's much chance the Jets will risk having one player submarine the entire unit once again.

To wrap up this series, I'll be doing one more article focusing on a few interesting things from that 2007 season. However, we're almost ready to move on to the next series, where - over the next few weeks - I'll be looking in great detail at double teams and their effect upon productivity.

Tags: bentdouble, BGA, Bent Double

Jonas Schwartz and Willie Colon are ready to open their present that is the #3 pick in the NFL Draft. The guys discuss the possibility of the Jets trading up, yet again, and the crazy idea of selecting a non-QB (can someone say Bradley Chubb) with the 3rd overall selection. Plus, former NFL QB Dan Orlovsky calls in to give his insight into the top four quarterbacks.

Click below to listen

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 (Tim Fuller)
(Tim Fuller)

The Jets will open the 2018 season in Detroit against the Lions on Monday night football, and finish things in Week 17 on the road against the Patriots.

Their entire 2018 schedule has been confirmed by SNY's Ralph Vacchiano, and is below...

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Jan 1, 2018; Pasadena, CA, USA; Oklahoma Sooners quarterback Baker Mayfield (6) passes against the Georgia Bulldogs in the first quarter in the 2018 Rose Bowl college football playoff semifinal game at Rose Bowl Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports (Kirby Lee)
Jan 1, 2018; Pasadena, CA, USA; Oklahoma Sooners quarterback Baker Mayfield (6) passes against the Georgia Bulldogs in the first quarter in the 2018 Rose Bowl college football playoff semifinal game at Rose Bowl Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports (Kirby Lee)

Former QB Dan Orlovsky thinks the Jets are targeting Oklahoma QB Baker Mayfield with the No. 3 pick in the Draft, and one of the reasons is very specific.

Orlovsky, who played under Kyle Shanahan, noted that Jets OC Jeremy Bates is from the Mike Shanahan coaching tree. And that one of the traits Shanahan loved about John Elway is that he would screw his back foot into the ground when he threw -- adding that Bates loves that trait in quarterbacks as well. 

"There's one guy in the Draft who has that trait," Orlovsky said earlier this week on SNY's Jet Stream podcast. "And it's Baker Mayfield. He does the same thing when he throws. And I just think that those coaches fall in love with traits of guys that remind them of players that they had success with in the past. I think that they're looking at Baker Mayfield and going 'that's our guy.'"

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Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield drops back to pass against Ohio State during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 9, 2017, in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete) (Jay LaPrete/AP)
Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield drops back to pass against Ohio State during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 9, 2017, in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete) (Jay LaPrete/AP)

Projecting trades in a Mock Draft is a futile effort. There are too many variables and rumors. It's mostly speculation. And really, it's just an exercise in fantasy football.

But … well, who doesn't love fantasy football?

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Oct 14, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Southern California Trojans quarterback Sam Darnold. (Kirby Lee)
Oct 14, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Southern California Trojans quarterback Sam Darnold. (Kirby Lee)

In his latest mock draft, Sports Illustrated's Albert Breer has the Jets taking Sam Darnold as their quarterback of the future at No. 3. 

Many experts believe Darnold could be the first overall pick by the Browns, and if he doesn't land with Cleveland, then the Giants would scoop him up at No. 2. However, with Josh Allen as Breer's No. 1 pick and the Giants electing to go with Saquon Barkley over a quarterback, Darnold drops in the Jets' lap. 

So, there is no need for the Jets to choose between Josh Rosen or Baker Mayfield...

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Mangold's Hall of Fame chances 00:04:59
Dan Graca and Jon Hein debate over Nick Mangold's chances at making the Hall of Fame and the Devils' chances at beating the Lightning.

After a year out of football, No. 74 is officially hanging up the cleats. 

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive: On the lists of favorite players and all-time greats, you'll rarely find a center. They're buried in the trenches, often noticed only when a bad snap happens or a defensive tackle breaks through.

The same was probably true for Nick Mangold during his 11 NFL seasons - rarely noticed from the outside and incredibly underappreciated game to game. Yet somehow he still emerged from his long career as a fan favorite. And he definitely emerged as one of the Jets' all-time greats.

Tags: Nick Mangold
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New York Jets defensive end Leonard Williams gestures while jogging on the field prior to the game against the Buffalo Bills at New Era Field. (Rich Barnes/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets defensive end Leonard Williams gestures while jogging on the field prior to the game against the Buffalo Bills at New Era Field. (Rich Barnes/USA TODAY Sports)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

Jets GM Mike Maccagnan made it clear he had no worries about the state of the Jets' defensive line heading into the offseason. Sure, they've lost a lot of talent in recent years, trading Sheldon Richardson, cutting Muhammad Wilkerson and not re-signing Damon Harrison.

But they still have Leonard Williams, the sixth pick of the 2015 draft, and despite a down season last year, the Jets have huge expectations for him.

Tags: Damon Harrison, Leonard Williams, Muhammad Wilkerson, Sheldon Richardson, Steve McLendon, Ralph Vacchiano
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Los Angeles Chargers kicker Nick Rose attempts a field goal during an NFL game against the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium. (Kirby Lee/USA TODAY Sports)
Los Angeles Chargers kicker Nick Rose attempts a field goal during an NFL game against the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium. (Kirby Lee/USA TODAY Sports)

The Jets were awarded kicker Nick Rose on Monday after the Los Angeles Chargers placed him on waivers, the team announced.

Rose made 11 of 14 field goals in 10 games with the Chargers and Washington Redskins last season and converted on 23 of 26 extra points. He went 1-for-3 as a member of the Chargers in Weeks 16 and 17, and 10-for-11 in eight games with Washington. His longest make last year was 55 yards.

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Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

Brian Winters remembers everything about the moment his 2017 season went off the rails. He remembers the time, the place, the play, and without question, the pain.

"It was second quarter in Oakland (in Week 2) with five minutes to go before half when we were driving in to the north end zone. I still remember it like it was yesterday," said the 26-year-old guard. "It was an outside zone play and (running back) Bilal (Powell) was trying to stretch it outside of me, so I went to continue to push my guy through. And as soon as I pushed through I felt like a pop."

Tags: Brian Winters, Wesley Johnson, Ralph Vacchiano
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Oklahoma Sooners wide receiver Jeff Badet catches a touchdown pass against Texas Longhorns defensive back Kris Boyd in the second quarter at the Cotton Bowl. (Tim Heitman/USA TODAY Sports)
Oklahoma Sooners wide receiver Jeff Badet catches a touchdown pass against Texas Longhorns defensive back Kris Boyd in the second quarter at the Cotton Bowl. (Tim Heitman/USA TODAY Sports)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

Last week, we looked at some of the players who have been invited to attend an official pre-draft visit with the Jets. More names have leaked out over the past seven days, so let's break down some of the more interesting ones in detail.

Jeff Badet, WR, Oklahoma

Badet spent most of his collegiate career at Kentucky, but saw some high profile action last year after transferring to Oklahoma. He wasn't invited to the scouting combine, but if he had been, his pro day numbers for the 40-yard dash, vertical jump and broad jump would all have ranked first or second at the receiver position.

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Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield drops back to pass against Ohio State during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 9, 2017, in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete) (Jay LaPrete/AP)
Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield drops back to pass against Ohio State during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 9, 2017, in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete) (Jay LaPrete/AP)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive: It's not quite crunch time yet, but there are less than three weeks until the start of the first round of the NFL draft, which means draft boards are in their final stages all around the league. It also means that the truth about which players are being targeted by which teams is starting to leak out -- albeit slowly.

Still, there are a lot of variables, especially in the first two picks. But at the moment there aren't many changes to my latest Mini-Mock Draft. The Browns are still taking a quarterback at 1. The Jets are still definitely taking one at 3. And I still think the Giants will take one -- assuming the right one is available -- at 2.

Here's a full look at my new Top 10, with some updated inside information...

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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

Former Jets QB Mark Sanchez has been suspended four games after violating the performance-enhancing drug policy, the league announced Friday. 

Sanchez, who last played for the Jets in 2013, was the Bear's third-string quarterback last season. He claimed that "unknowing supplement contamination" was the reason for his drug test to turn up positive. 

The 31-year-old took to Instagram to explain the whole story...

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 (Kamil Krzaczynski)
(Kamil Krzaczynski)

The Jets have already begun condensing their roster for next season as the team announced several cuts on Friday. 

Among them was former Bears RB Jeremy Langford, who signed a reserve/future contract with the Jets worth $630,000 this offseason. The 26-year-old spent time jumping through practice squads last season, and though he was promoted to the Ravens' 53-man roster, an injury pushed him to the IR the same week he joined the team. 

Langford was released following his IR placement, and the former fourth-round pick wouldn't see time for the rest of the season.

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New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. (13) greets Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant (88) during warmups before a game at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner)
New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. (13) greets Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant (88) during warmups before a game at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner)

WR Dez Bryant was released by the Cowboys on Friday afternoon, with Bryant reportedly hinting afterwards that he might be staying in the NFC East.

Bryant, 29, had a down year in 2017, with 69 receptions for 838 yards and six touchdowns in 16 games.

"I let a lot of things get in the way that bother me mentally," Bryant said late last season. "I feel like, if anything, I need to deal with in the offseason - is that. Like I said, there's only certain things I can control."

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Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield drops back to pass against Ohio State during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 9, 2017, in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete) (Jay LaPrete/AP)
Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield drops back to pass against Ohio State during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 9, 2017, in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete) (Jay LaPrete/AP)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

The Jets are taking a quarterback with the third overall pick in the draft. They know it. Everyone knows it. And they know everyone knows it. "I mean, you'd have to be out of your mind to think otherwise," was how one team official said it. The only lingering question is: Which one?

The Jets have had or will have had private meetings and workouts with all of the top four, and GM Mike Maccagnan has made the rounds at their Pro Days. When they traded up to No. 3 they were convinced that they'd be happy with choosing from whichever two (or three) fell to them. And obviously at least two of the Big Four -- USC's Sam Darnold, UCLA's Josh Rosen, Oklahoma's Baker Mayfield and Wyoming's Josh Allen -- will still be there...

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Jonas Schwartz and Willie Colon take their deepest dive yet into the NFL Draft. They discuss the latest with the four quarterbacks, as well as look back at Willie's draft process with the Steelers in 2006. Later, Brian Costello of the New York Post joins the show to give his take on the draft and the possibility of Mike Maccagnan signing defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins.

Click below to listen

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New York Jets quarterback Josh McCown (15) gestures after thrown a touchdown pass to wide receiver Robby Anderson, not pictured, during the second half of an NFL football game against the Carolina Panthers, Sunday, Nov. 26, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun) (Bill Kostroun/AP)
New York Jets quarterback Josh McCown (15) gestures after thrown a touchdown pass to wide receiver Robby Anderson, not pictured, during the second half of an NFL football game against the Carolina Panthers, Sunday, Nov. 26, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun) (Bill Kostroun/AP)

The Jets' preseason schedule has been officially released for the 2018 season. 

The Falcons will be Gang Green's first opponent of the new year on their home turf. Then, they will hit the road to face the Redskins on Aug. 16 at 8 p.m.

The annual Snoopy Bowl at MetLife Stadium between the Jets and Giants will be the Week 3 matchup, with the Jets getting home field advantage.

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Top QB prospect Josh Rosen 00:01:13
Former UCLA quarterback Josh Rosen is expected to be taken as one of the top QB's in the 2018 NFL Draft.

In his latest mock draft, ESPN's Mel Kiper sees the Jets grabbing UCLA QB Josh Rosen with their third overall pick -- as SNY's Ralph Vacchiano projects in his Mini Mock Draft 3.0. 

The Jets clearly traded up to the No. 3 slot to take one of the highly touted quarterbacks. With Wyoming's Josh Allen and USC's Sam Darnold going to the Browns and Giants respectively, Rosen appears the best option for the Jets in Kiper's mind. 

CLICK BELOW TO READ KIPER'S ANALYSIS

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Oct 22, 2017; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; New York Jets tight end Eric Tomlinson (83) hurdles Miami Dolphins strong safety Nate Allen (29) during the first half at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports (Jasen Vinlove)
Oct 22, 2017; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; New York Jets tight end Eric Tomlinson (83) hurdles Miami Dolphins strong safety Nate Allen (29) during the first half at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports (Jasen Vinlove)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

Having opted to let Austin Seferain-Jenkins leave in free agency, the Jets are relying on a group of young tight ends to replace his production, recently adding two more options to the mix.

It's possible the Jets could look to add to the group via the draft but, for now, let's consider what each of the tight ends currently on the roster brings to the table, and consider how they might be used in 2018...

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Top QB prospect Josh Rosen 00:01:13
Former UCLA quarterback Josh Rosen is expected to be taken as one of the top QB's in the 2018 NFL Draft.

With the NFL Draft a little over two weeks away, the Jets continue to get their last live look at the top prospects they could select with their third overall pick. 

After Oklahoma QB Baker Mayfield wraps up his private workout with the Jets Tuesday, UCLA QB Josh Rosen will visit the team, per SNY's Ralph Vacchiano.

After Rosen's visit, USC QB Sam Darnold is expected to be next on the list at some point later this week. Wyoming QB Josh Allen is also expected to visit at a later date.

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 (Aaron Doster)
(Aaron Doster)

The Jets continue to bolster their defense with another addition at the second tier in vetearn LB Kevin Minter, the team announced Monday. 

Minter most recently played for the Bengals in 2017, where he tallied 32 tackles in nine games. 

He was a second round draft pick by the Cardinals back in 2013, and he would spend four seasons in Arizona before heading to Cincinnati. He totaled 175 tackles, five sacks, one forced fumble, and six passes defended over 61 games (37 starts). 

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Dec 1, 2016; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Charles Johnson (12) runs after the catch in the second quarter against the Dallas Cowboys at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Rempel)
Dec 1, 2016; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Charles Johnson (12) runs after the catch in the second quarter against the Dallas Cowboys at U.S. Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Rempel)

The Jets continue to stack their wide receiving corps for next season as former Vikings WR Charles Johnson signed a deal with the team on Monday. 

Johnson, who was waived by the Panthers in July 2017, sat out all last season due to surgery on his right knee. He played for the Vikings from 2014-16, where he totaled 60 receptions for 834 yards and two touchdowns over 39 games. 

The Grand Valley State product was a Packers' seventh-rounder back in 2013, and after joinging the team's practice squad following camp that year, the Brown picked him up to join their 53-man squad. He dressed but never saw action with the Browns. 

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The Jets' free agency strategy 00:12:52
The Jets Nation panel analyzes the Jets' recent free-agent additions, including former Vikings franchise quarterback Teddy Bridgewater.

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

Here is the most up-to-date information on whom the Jets have added and lost during free agency, including contract details and salary cap information. Be sure to bookmark this page and check back for frequent updates.

JETS SALARY CAP SPACE

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Dec 27, 2017; Bronx, NY, USA; Iowa Hawkeyes running back Akrum Wadley (25) rushes against Boston College Eagles defensive tackle Noa Merritt (94) during the second half of the 2017 Pinstripe Bowl at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Dec 27, 2017; Bronx, NY, USA; Iowa Hawkeyes running back Akrum Wadley (25) rushes against Boston College Eagles defensive tackle Noa Merritt (94) during the second half of the 2017 Pinstripe Bowl at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

While the Jets are reportedly hosting Baker Mayfield and Josh Rosen for official Draft visits this week, we've also been keeping an eye on who else is reportedly scheduled to attend. Last year, both Jamal Adams and Marcus Maye took official visits before being selected with the Jets' top two picks.

Aside from the quarterbacks, most of this year's names that have leaked so far would be players the Jets might be hoping will drop to day three of the draft or maybe even be available as a priority free agent if they go undrafted. Let's look at some of the more interesting prospects...

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Jan 1, 2018; Pasadena, CA, USA; Oklahoma Sooners quarterback Baker Mayfield (6) passes against the Georgia Bulldogs in the first quarter in the 2018 Rose Bowl college football playoff semifinal game at Rose Bowl Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports (Kirby Lee)
Jan 1, 2018; Pasadena, CA, USA; Oklahoma Sooners quarterback Baker Mayfield (6) passes against the Georgia Bulldogs in the first quarter in the 2018 Rose Bowl college football playoff semifinal game at Rose Bowl Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports (Kirby Lee)

With the NFL Draft just 17 days away, Oklahoma QB Baker Mayfield is scheduled to meet with the Jets in Florham Park on Monday and Tuesday, according to multiple reports.

The Jets have already met with Mayfield on multiple occasons -- including at the Senior Bowl and Scouting Combine -- and the team held a private workout with him. 

The 22-year-old Mayfield, who is expected to be selected early in the first round, threw 119 touchdowns in three seasons with Oklahoma and capped it off by throwing 43 touchdowns and six interceptions in 2017 when he started a career-high 14 games...

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New York Jets running back Bilal Powell is pursued by Los Angeles Chargers defensive end Isaac Rochell on a 57-yard touchdown run in the third quarter during an NFL football game at MetLife Stadium. (Kirby Lee/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets running back Bilal Powell is pursued by Los Angeles Chargers defensive end Isaac Rochell on a 57-yard touchdown run in the third quarter during an NFL football game at MetLife Stadium. (Kirby Lee/USA TODAY Sports)

Despite the retirement of Matt Forte, the Jets have bolstered their depth in the offensive backfield with a couple of veteran additions. Let's give consideration to what each back brings to the table and how they might find a niche in the Jets' offense this season.

Bilal Powell...

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Sep 10, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Indianapolis Colts nose tackle Al Woods (99) and Indianapolis Colts defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins (95) wait to take the field before the Colts game with the Los Angeles Rams at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports (Robert Hanashiro)
Sep 10, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Indianapolis Colts nose tackle Al Woods (99) and Indianapolis Colts defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins (95) wait to take the field before the Colts game with the Los Angeles Rams at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports (Robert Hanashiro)

Free agent DT Johnathan Hankins visited the Jets on Thursday, reports Dan Graziano of ESPN. Hankins, who was cut by the Colts earlier this offseason, has also visited the Redskins.

After spending the first four seasons of his career with the Giants, Hankins agreed to a four-your deal with the Colts worth $30 million, with $14.5 million guaranteed. 

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive: The Jets were obviously looking for an upgrade at defensive tackle when they made their brief -- and ill-advised -- pursuit of Ndamukong Suh. Thankfully, they pulled the plug on that before it happened. Johnathan Hankins could turn out to be a much better fit...

Tags: Johnathan Hankins
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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 WR/DB and Super Bowl champion, Bill Rademacher, has passed at the age of 75, the team confirmed on Tuesday. 

Rademacher came out of Northern Michigan undrafted, and ending up joining the Jets as a receiver in 1964. He would play in New York for five seasons that included a Super Bowl title in 1968. 

After getting released in 1969, he joined the Boston Patriots where he played just two seasons before retiring. Radebacher, then, became the head coach of Norther Michigan, where he owned a 37-16-1 career record. 

Overall, he played in 58 games totaling 24 receptions for 282 yards and three touchdowns.

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Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield drops back to pass against Ohio State during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 9, 2017, in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete) (Jay LaPrete/AP)
Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield drops back to pass against Ohio State during the first half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Sept. 9, 2017, in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/Jay LaPrete) (Jay LaPrete/AP)

Oklahoma QB Baker Mayfield keeps notes on media members who are criticial of him, which former Jet and current SNY Jet Stream podcast co-host Willie Colon thinks is a bad sign.

"I saw it as a red flag," Colon said on Tuesday. "I did see it as a problem. This is a city that is notoriously known for its media. The New York media is unapologetic. Our beat writers make their name for being leaderless -- they're not rooting for you."

"Half the time, you have to earn it," Colon said about the respect of the media in New York. "And I think if you're Baker Mayfield, and you're already doing that without a team. Let's say you do get drafted by the Jets, there's three or four beat writers that will -- I promise you -- will say bad things about you and critique your game and who you are as a person. And may sometimes go over the line. And you're at the end of the locker like 'oh, I just checked twitter. Let me check this guy's name off.' That means you're focused on the wrong things. You should only be worried about being the best you can be for your team and winning football games."

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Nov 18, 2017; Memphis, TN, USA; Memphis Tigers quarterback Riley Ferguson (4) scores a touchdown against Southern Methodist Mustangs defensive end Justin Lawler (99) during the second half at Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Justin Ford-USA TODAY Sports (Justin Ford)
Nov 18, 2017; Memphis, TN, USA; Memphis Tigers quarterback Riley Ferguson (4) scores a touchdown against Southern Methodist Mustangs defensive end Justin Lawler (99) during the second half at Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Justin Ford-USA TODAY Sports (Justin Ford)

The Jets currently own four day three picks and, having traded away two second rounders, will be keen to find some contributors. Last year, the Jets traded down a few times and ended up making six selections on day three. 

Let's highlight some players who could interest the Jets on day three this year.

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