Opening Statement…

On the injury front, right now, I’m not sure if Jason Hill will practice. He has a low back.  Then guys that will be limited, Sione Po’uha with a low back, Kenrick Ellis, knee, Joe McKnight, ankle, Bart Scott, toe, Jeremy Kerley, heel and hamstring, Aaron Berry, quad. And then all these other guys will be full,  Bilal Powell, shoulder, Mark Sanchez, low back, Brandon Moore, hip, foot, Matt Slauson, knee, Mike DeVito, finger, Clyde Gates, shoulder, Jeff Cumberland, wrist, Tim Tebow, ribs, Calvin Pace, shoulder, Stephen Hill, ankle, LaRon Landry, heel and Nick Mangold, thumb.  So that’s the injury list so it looks like we’re pretty healthy.  Obviously, yesterday was more just a walk through and for the most part coming back off a game, but you still need those practice reps. We had probably 50 walk through reps is really what it amounts to, so that’s kind of what you do. We’ll pick it up more today. We’ll get them running around today and then you kind of back down on them on Wednesday.  This has to be a good day of practice for us and we’re approaching it that way.  Our guys know that it’s important to run around and continue to get all that soreness out yet also get your prep for this game.  Obviously, this is an opponent, very multiple on both sides of the ball, sometimes it’s hit or miss on what you’re practicing against. You don’t necessarily know exactly what they’re going to do offensively and, for that matter, on defense as well.  You have an idea and that’s kind of how you approach it, but this is a game where it seems like you have to make adjustments in the course of the game on both sides of the ball. So, as we talked about last week, we knew each other really well, well these two opponents know each other well, and there’s little subtle things that they’ll do offensively and on defense that we have to be sharp with and vice versa.

On the short week…

 

Everything is just crunched down.  This is a week there’s not a whole lot of sleep for coaches, but your players have to get rested as best they can.  Everything you do is trying to get your guys to where they’re popping out of their skin on Thursday. That’s the charge of every coach, to make sure your guys are mentally prepared yet also physically prepared for that kind of challenge that’s in front of them.  As a coach you’re just going.  The guys that it’s really tough on is young Tony (Sparano, Jr.), Mark DeLeone, Jimmy O’Neil (and) Mike Smith.  Those are the guys that really get the brunt of it.  If they have five hours of sleep in the whole week, that’s probably saying something.  But that’s kind of where you’re at.

On whether the season’s challenges have tested his conviction to stick to his core beliefs…

 

No, you really believe in what you’re doing. That’s not challenging if you truly believe in what you do and who you are.  Obviously, the results are, there’s that fine line, well you have to change something or how do you expect there to be change? Yet, your core beliefs are what they are and that’s what’s driven me my whole career that I totally believe in. But are there things that you do through experience that you learn from that add to those core beliefs? I think there (are).  And this is an experience that we’re going through right now.  We’re 4-6 and we’ve been down that road before, yet being where we were at 3-6 at the time we had never been that way before, so there are different things. Each year, it’s different. You have different injury challenges, whatever it is. So each year’s a little different.  I think going into it, I always felt that every assistant coach thinks they’re ready to be a head coach, “Oh yeah, no problem,” and all that.  But I made (mistakes), and people will say you’re making a ton of mistakes right now. Well, that’s probably true, but I made more when I was just coming into this thing in 2009, because one thing that it couldn’t have (been is), I’ve been around football all my life, but you’ve never been in this chair.  They say you can’t buy experience and I believe that’s the truth. But I think right now, I’m more comfortable in this role as a head coach and I’ve learned, and I still learn. Obviously, you’re better now through the experience.

On how he lifts up others around him…

 

I just think that comes natural.  With me, I’m always a very positive person. I love positive energy.  I like that around me.  Obviously, it’s easy to be negative when you’re 3-6 or right now, where we’re at but that’s not going to help you.  You have to be sure of yourself, which I am, and positive that you can get better and I think we have a whole building like that.  And again, with that being said, we’re not even close to where we want to be or need to be.  And I’ve said it all along; I think we have the people, that we can get out of a bad situation just by the work ethic and our belief and the person next to me and the belief in yourself.

On what happened to Jason Hill…

 

I’m not sure.  Quite honestly, we’re looking into it.  And really, he’s being evaluated that’s why I’m not sure if he’ll practice today or not.  But that’s really all I can tell you on that.

On the biggest change in Sanchez compared to his rookie year…

 

I’m sure he feels the same way I do that he’s better. Through those experiences, he’s ready for it now.  You’re kind of walking in and you don’t know, but you just know you have to work hard.  And that’s what we did.  All of us just rolled our sleeves up and we worked hard and we believed that we could get better and I think we did. And I believe right now, in this football team, that we’re at that exact spot.  Maybe the roster’s different, this guy’s different, that guy’s different, or whatever, but I truly believe as a football team, that we think we can get better. Now, obviously, how much better? That remains to be seen. But we truly believe we can get better and we have to.

On Tom Brady…

 

When you look at him, you can almost say he’s a machine back there.  The thing about him is he’s a machine, yet he’s passionate and a fiery leader and all that type of stuff, so you wish he was just a machine.  His competitive side elevates his team as well. That’s what you get in those once-in-a-generation type quarterbacks, that he’s just a special guy. Somebody was telling me before we played them that they had, I think they were going for a record, maybe got it against us, with over 350 yards or something as a team. What for like 500 games in a row or something like that, I don’t know what it is, but it just seems like it.  You look at the numbers and (say) hey, they’re struggling in this. They’re fourth in the league in this category. So, that’s something that we really take advantage of.’ (laughter)  When you look at them offensively, (he) doesn’t get sacked, they don’t turn the ball over, they lead the league in points, rushing is in the top five.  It’s like, man, I don’t know.

On defending Brady in the previous game…

 

When it mattered most, he delivered and they got the victory. Again, we know each other so well. We know enough of Tom Brady to know if he knows exactly what you’re in, you are in trouble. You have to make adjustments, you have to be multiple and that’s hard to do. They actually slowed down their no-huddle. It hasn’t been quite as fast as it was, but we’ll see. Maybe they’ll go to that. Maybe they won’t, but against a (Coach) Bill Belichick team, you have to be prepared for anything.

On whether familiarity with New England helps preparation in a short week…

I think it’s valuable in the fact that you played against a lot of their personnel. (Julian) Edelman, obviously has had a much bigger role, will step up, and I’m sure will have a much bigger role now that (Rob) Gronkowski is out. We’ll see how that changes. They have five tight ends on their roster. They have all these wide outs and then they have three running backs. Each guy brings different things to the table, but you’ve played against them. Brandon Lloyd, I’ve played against him, so you’re familiar with your opponent. Will they put him in different spots? They probably will, but at least you’re familiar with the opponents you’re going up against.

On the Patriots often getting better as the season goes on…

You make a great point. I think the four years I’ve been here, I think they’ve lost that second game of the year, all four of them, so we want to schedule that game for the second week next year, twice, if that’s possible. (laughter) Good teams get better as the season goes on. Certainly, that’s a team (that is) well coached. There are new parts each year on different teams and sometimes it takes a little longer to get those guys together. A lot of times, your really good teams will start taking off at the end. I know what you’re going to say, “You guys lost the last three last year.” I appreciate you thinking it. (laughter) (That is) what happens, a lot of times those teams will separate themselves.  

On if he will talk to Coach Pettine more or less during the game due to the Patriots no-huddle…

No, we’re always dialed in together. It’s (been) the battery of us for years with (Coach) Dennis Thurman, myself, Pett (Coach Pettine) and obviously now with (Coach) Bob Sutton. We’re all on the same page. It might not seem like that if you here us over the headsets, but really, we all understand each other so well (that) we know the adjustments. I’ll be honest, the adjustments that our guys make from the communication, ‘Hey, we’ve blown this coverage, we have to make sure we go over this, this and this. Boom, DT (Coach Thurman). Bam, he’s on it right now. (Coach) Jim O’Neil, sees something up top, he calls down, our guys know each other so well. The communication is unbelievable and the job gets done. You look at last week. We had some communication breakdowns on the first drive. They got fixed just like that. That’s the mark of a great staff, a staff that’s really been together a while and knows each other. It starts at the top. It starts at (Coach) Mike Pettine and goes down (to) all those guys. It’s quite an operation.

 

On whether there is a concern about lack of sleep during the short week…

I think (with) the players, it’s the same on both sides, but they’re very mindful of knowing that they have to take care of their bodies. This week is critical (for) that, so I don’t think that’s it.

 

On whether there is a concern about fatigue from a coaching standpoint during the short week…

From a coaching standpoint, right now, the preparation stuff, that’s one thing, but even during the bye week, you get ready for specific opponents. New England is obviously one of those opponents where you do take a look at what you’re doing and you get ready for the next week’s opponent. You look at yourself, but you also take time to look at New England. That’s part of it. When we looked at it, we knew this week was coming and it was going to be a short week, so we did some prep leading into this week already.

 

On whether Kyle Wilson returned punts because of Jeremy Kerley’s health…

Jeremy (is 6th) in the league as a punt returner, so if he’s 100 percent (and) healthy with no issues, then Jeremy will be our punt returner. Like I said, he is (sixth) in the league (in punt return average).

 

On Ed Reed’s suspension…

You’re going to get me into trouble if I make a comment, so there’s no chance (I will). I’ll say this, Ed Reed is a great football player. There’s no way Ed would purposely go out and hurt somebody. There’s no question about it. I haven’t seen the hits. We all know that the league is very serious about the protection of the players and it should be - because this is a great game because of the players. Obviously, the league wants to protect the players and that’s the way it should be.

 

On players still playing physical within the confines of the rules…

You have to play this game a certain way. You have to be as physical as you can possibly be. The main thing is lowering the target, not leading with the head, leading with the shoulder instead of the head and lowering your target. I think the league has done a super job of that. The game is still as physical and fast as it’s ever been, but again you can tell there’s a huge emphasis on protecting the players and I think that’s a great thing for the league.

 

On whether working with three effective running backs is the ideal scenario going forward…

I think you’re right. I think it is the ideal scenario for us because we have three very capable backs. Instead of just throwing one guy in there all the time to take all the hits, protections (and) routes, when you have three guys coming in, (it helps). I think that’s where the league is going to. You don’t necessarily have that guy that does it all every snap anymore the way you used to with a Walter Payton. You kind of divide those things up. I think for us, it’s good and you see the Patriots do it with their different backs. Miami does it (and) Buffalo is doing it. If you have the talent, and the guys are healthy and fresh, I think that’s the best way to do it.

Tags: Transcript, Brian Bassett

New York Jets' Jamal Adams (33) and Los Angeles Chargers' Sean McGrath (84) fight for control of the ball during the second half of an NFL football game Sunday, Dec. 24, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun) (Bill Kostroun/AP)
New York Jets' Jamal Adams (33) and Los Angeles Chargers' Sean McGrath (84) fight for control of the ball during the second half of an NFL football game Sunday, Dec. 24, 2017, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun) (Bill Kostroun/AP)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

The Jets own the third pick in this year's draft, their highest since 1996. How have they drafted in the first round over the past five years?

2017: Safety Jamal Adams, No. 6

It's too early to tell how Adams' career will pan out, but the signs so far have been promising. He started every game in his rookie year as the Jets' secondary definitely played better than it had in 2016. On the field, Adams had his ups and downs, but he showed flashes of brilliance in a versatile role. Off the field, he's played a big part in the ongoing culture change that has galvanized the team and has also been a useful tool in player recruitment.

Tags: Calvin Pryor, Damon Harrison, Darron Lee, Dee Milliner, Jamal Adams, Leonard Williams, Muhammad Wilkerson, Quinton Coples, Sheldon Richardson
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Nov 18, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Southern California Trojans quarterback Sam Darnold (right) and UCLA Bruins quarterback Josh Rosen (3) shake hands after their game at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports (Kelvin Kuo)
Nov 18, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Southern California Trojans quarterback Sam Darnold (right) and UCLA Bruins quarterback Josh Rosen (3) shake hands after their game at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports (Kelvin Kuo)

It will be an absolute stunner if the Jets don't take a quarterback after trading up to No. 3 in the NFL Draft, which takes place on Thursday night in Dallas.

So, who will it be?

At least two out of the group of Baker Mayfield, Sam Darnold, Josh Rosen, and Josh Allen will be available for the Jets. 

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Wyoming quarterback Josh Allen runs a drill at the NFL football scouting combine in Indianapolis, Saturday, March 3, 2018. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy) (Michael Conroy/AP)
Wyoming quarterback Josh Allen runs a drill at the NFL football scouting combine in Indianapolis, Saturday, March 3, 2018. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy) (Michael Conroy/AP)

The Browns' choices for their No. 1 pick seem to have come down to two choices just three days away from the NFL Draft: Sam Darnold or Josh Allen?

Yes, there is always the prospect of the Browns going with RB Saquon Barkley with their first overall selection, knowing they have the No. 4 pick later on. However, experts including SI's Peter King see Cleveland getting their quarterback first before addressing anywhere else. 

Recently, rumblings about Allen going No. 1 have gained some steam. But King's most trusted source says Allen is too much of a risk, and the Browns don't want to get another quarterback pick wrong.

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 (Kevin Jairaj)
(Kevin Jairaj)

Broadway Joe loves Broadway Baker. Or at least that's what could be Baker Mayfield's nickname if the Jets were to select him with their No. 3 overall pick. 

Hall of Famer and former Jets QB Joe Namath loves what he has seen from Mayfield over the years of watching him play. He recently watched the Georgia-Oklahoma College Football Playoff matchup at the Rose Bowl on New Year's Eve, and after his daughter asked if he had seen anything like the back-and-forth bout, he responded saying he wouldn't want to be going up against Mayfield...


Everything you need to know about the Jets and No. 3 >> Read more

Vacc's Mini Mock Draft has Jets tabbing Mayfield >> Read more

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 (Dennis Wierzbicki)
(Dennis Wierzbicki)

The Jets have not stopped looking for help on their defensive line as they hosted numerous free-agent linemen on Monday. 

Former Bears DT Lamarr Houston and former Patriots DT Chris Jones were among those looking to impress the Jets. Houston split time with the Bears and Texans last season, totaling five sacks over 10 games. A former second-round pick by the Raiders back in 2010, Houston is entering his ninth season in the NFL this year. 

Jones played for the division-rival Patriots in 2013 and 2014, where he finished with nine sacks and 79 tackles over 28 career games. He most recently played for the 49ers in 2016, where he had 17 tackles over six games. He did not play for an NFL squad in 2017. 

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New York Jets defensive end Leonard Williams on the sidelines during the third quarter against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Jets defensive end Leonard Williams on the sidelines during the third quarter against the Buffalo Bills at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)

The Jets have officially picked up DL Leonard Williams' fifth-year option, keeping Williams with the team through 2019 at least. 

Williams, 23, the sixth overall pick of the 2015 NFL Draft, will make $14.2 million in 2019, assuming he's considered a defensive end. If they try to say he's a defensive tackle, the contract will be $11.4 million, according to SNY's Ralph Vacchiano. The contract becomes fully guaranteed next March.

"It's definitely time to step up and take it to the next level," Williams said last week via Vacchiano. "That comes with a lot. It's just not my play on the field. It comes with my leadership, how I approach work, how much time I'm putting in outside of the mandatory hours into my craft, into my game."

Tags: Leonard Williams
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Who will the Jets select #3? 00:05:13
SNY NFL Insider Ralph Vacchiano and SNY NFL Draft Expert Rich Cirminiello discuss who the Jets will select third overall in the NFL Draft.

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

In less than a week, Jets GM Mike Maccagnan will make the most important draft pick of his tenure with the team, the one that surely will define his legacy.

No pressure, right?

Tags: Eli Manning, Josh McCown, Ralph Vacchiano
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Tulane Green Wave cornerback Parry Nickerson returns his interception against the Connecticut Huskies in the second quarter at Rentschler Field. (David Butler II/USA TODAY Sports)
Tulane Green Wave cornerback Parry Nickerson returns his interception against the Connecticut Huskies in the second quarter at Rentschler Field. (David Butler II/USA TODAY Sports)

Bent, theJetsBlog.com Follow on Twitter

Over the last few weeks, we looked at some of the players who have been invited to attend an official pre-draft visit with the Jets. With the visits ending earlier this week, let's take a final look at a selection of the players New York brought in.

Parry Nickerson, CB, Tulane

Nickerson is a four-year starter who was a constant standout on the Tulane defense. During his career, he recorded 16 interceptions, broke up another 31 passes and scored two defensive touchdowns. He turned heads at the scouting combine when he ran a 4.32 40-yard dash.

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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)

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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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