New York Jets Offensive Coordinator Marty Mornhinweg, 9.26

 Opening Statement…

That last ballgame I was proud of the guys. This team I think we talked about before, this team’s got some guts. (I’m) proud of the guys. We’ve got a heck of a staff regarding position coaches. Mike Devlin has done just a heck of a job with that line and we rely on that line. He’s a heck of a coach. Sanjay (Lal) has done a heck of a job with that receiving group. And they had a rough one the game before and then they came back and had a heck of a game. We had some players making plays time after time and then Bilal (Powell) sure had a great game. He’s breaking tackles and making guys miss. Now, I want to make it crystal clear that we’ve got a lot of hard work to do to get to where we want to be. There’s just no question about that. I’m sure you all saw the game. So, there we go. (There’s) a lot of hard work left. We’ve got to clean several things up. We’ve got to tighten a couple other things up. And then here we go. We’ve got a great opportunity on the road to get some business done that way. It’s also a great challenge. I will tell you, this Tennessee team, its defense, well, they’re a top 10 defense in many categories. I believe their seventh overall in many of the categories or top 10. They’re very fast at the linebacker spot – all of them can run. (I) coached against a couple of them. Their defensive front is just excellent and then (they’re) very aggressive in the secondary, so we’ve got, certainly, a great challenge and a lot of preparation and hard work left to do. It’s Thursday so our preparation has to be at an all-time high.

On if any of Powell’s runs against Buffalo stand out…

Well, there are several runs that pop into my mind. However, I certainly expect it from him. He expects it from himself. He turned it loose just a little bit. (He had) a heck of a ball game and (I) certainly was not surprised. He’s a little deceptive in how he goes about his game.

On how Powell is deceptive…

Well, I think he’s bigger than it appears. He’s stronger because he’s a little bit bigger than he appears. He’s a little quicker, a little faster. Really he is just a real natural football player. Things come easily to him. You teach him something and then he gets it very quickly. So, that’s the type of player he is and quite productive.

On if there is a specific amount of times he wants to throw downfield…

Every game’s different. (We have an) individual specific game plan. That’s the way we do it. Every game will be different that way.

On if playing against an aggressive Tennessee defense allows him to throw downfield…

Well, we’ll see. They can play it many different ways. They’re very good, very well coached. (It’s) just an excellent scheme. And they do mix it pretty well and it’s an unconventional mix in some cases and so we’ll see. We’ll see what we can get going here.

On if he wanted to throw downfield against Buffalo before or during the game…

Well, I’m not going to get into too many specifics on how we do things. But certainly we’ve got some players that can go just a little bit. There were some things that we wanted to get accomplished in that game and we got many of them accomplished (and) there are a couple we didn’t as well. That’s typical for a normal game.

On if his trust for Geno Smith is growing each week…

You’ve got to trust all of your players. That’s just simple. You’ve got to trust them all. I will say this with Geno, I’m impressed a little bit more every day. (He’s) an impressive young man, certainly talented. He’s got a lot of things to learn. Some of these things he’s seeing again for the first time. He’s got a lot of work to do for several years here. When we’re on the field, all the individual coaches – I lean on them, a lot (we) try to get guys in the right spots for their strengths and once it goes, that trust and communication are key in what we do.

On if time of possession is a priority or a byproduct of other things…

Well, it’s a secondary thing. The number of plays are more important. The things that I’m concerned more are the things that correlate to winning. Points, certainly. Turnover ratio, and we’ve got to get that squared away just a little bit. Yards per attempt in the pass. There’s some others there that correlate a little bit more to winning. And I’ve never been much of a time of possession (coach). Rex (Ryan) certainly is (joking). But the number of plays are even more important. I will tell you I do look at it, though (joking).

On if he spoke with Coach Ryan about throwing the ball downfield before being hired…

I’m not going to go backwards because we’ve talked about that before. I will tell you that Rex and I had spent a day together and I know this, that he wanted to be very aggressive and attack and that’s one reason that I ended up here I think.

On how often he uses the word “attack” in meetings…

Yeah, attack and aggressive. It’s a mentality.

On if there is an over/under of times he uses the word “attack”…

I don’t know. It’s a mentality. You can run a deceptive play but you can still be very aggressive within that. We just want to be that mentality is important. It’s important to me, anyway.

On Smith’s demeanor on the sideline is as calm as it seems…

Yeah. (He’s) very mature that way, well beyond his years.

On if he likes being on the field to keep Smith calm…

Yeah. There’s a lot of reasons. You give up something to get something if you go up or down. When you go up, you give up the eyeball-to-eyeball and the gut instincts and the feel of individual players and as a group. But you give up a little bit of sight. And so I rely on the guys upstairs a lot that way. And they do a great job up there.

On how it is different calling plays on the field…

I will tell you, I haven’t put that much thought into that part of it. I think a coach could be equally effective both ways. I really do. It’s the eyeball-to-eyeball that sways me for that part I think.

On if his attack mentality has always been part of his coaching DNA or has it developed recently…

Well, no. Yeah, I would confirm that I think.

On his particular challenge of facing Gregg Williams’ Titans defense…

Well, talk about aggressive and attack. They do that. It’s going to be a real physical game, now. It’s just that simple. (Jerry) Gray is the coordinator and Gregg’s there and it looks like a pretty good mix. They’re going a heck of a job down there.

On the Titans blitzing 50 percent of the time…

Well, it’s close, yeah. It depends what you call a blitz, but yeah.

On what he considers a dropped pass…

We are very hard. The fellas are paid to catch the ball. We expect them to catch it. It’s that simple. If it’s even close we expect them to catch it.

On whether you expect the receiver to catch the ball even if they get one hand on it…

(If) they get a little finger on it, they should catch it.

On whether Smith has developed as he has expected…

I don’t know. It’s hard for me to answer because I haven’t put too much thought into that specific question. Everybody’s a little bit different, so they progress differently. Look, we’re going to go through some ups and downs here, so we understand that and he understands that. He understands now. He understands how important it is to take care of the ball and he understands the consequences of that. He’s working diligently to minimize those types of plays, and with the exception of that, I think he’s quite far along. I don’t want to speak to soon because we have a lot of learning to do and a long way to go here, but I will tell you I’ve been impressed with him on a daily basis.

On whether he considers a blitz when the defense brings more rushers than the offense has blockers…

No, well some of them get a little bit subjective, but when it’s five or more, typically I consider that a blitz.  You get into fire zones where it was initially five or six, some people call it a blitz, some people wouldn’t.

On whether he has noticed teams clogging up the middle to account for Kellen Winslow…

There’s no question that’s occurred, absolutely no question. That was one of the things we were talking about, I wanted to get Kellen (Winslow) going a little bit more and that’s one thing I didn’t get accomplished. That’s my responsibility. But clearly, our opponents up to date have known exactly where Kellen is, so that could be a good thing, in one aspect. Kellen has helped us an awful lot with his presence on the field. There’s no question about that.

On whether having a veteran receiver like Santonio Holmes helps Smith’s development…

He can make touchdowns. That’s a good thing (laughter). I know you’re here, and you’re right I think that Santonio (Holmes), just his work ethic alone, he’s in this building, and I’m not exaggerating much, 16 or 18 hours a day with his preparation, (working) on the field, in the meetings and with his treatment as well. He is a diligent, diligent guy. Football’s important to him, and he’s a real pro. So that alone goes a long way with any rookie, certainly at quarterback.

On whether it’s different coaching a rookie quarterback than a veteran one…

Yes, it’s certainly different, to teach it, correct it, re-teach it, correct it, forever, that’s what we do. We’re teachers first. Other than a little less sleep, it’s very rewarding that way, I think, for a lot of people. Our whole staff, I think is kind of in on that thing because we do everything together. Those position coaches who we have on offense, they’re heavily involved in every aspect offensively that we do. Yes, I enjoy the teaching part. There’s no question about that. The other thing is Kellen (and) Santonio, (are) in programs so (they don’t) practice (regularly). (The) preparation part is exciting for all of us and it’s really important right now because we have some players in a new system and some players who don’t practice regularly by plan. Geno, being in his first year and didn’t get as much time as we would have liked in the preseason and on and on and on. So, yes, it’s rewarding that way.

New York Jets Defensive Coordinator Dennis Thurman, 9.26

On how to prevent making a big mistake with Chris Johnson…

You hope not to. He’s one of the better running backs in the league. He’s explosive, he’s fast. You hope to corral him, you have to gang tackle him, you have to pursue the football and you have to wrap him up. If you don’t, he just has explosive speed. It’s something you have to be conscious of on every snap. We feel like we’ll be up to the task, we really do.

On Dee Milliner…

Injuries are a part of (the game). Realistically, we’ll coach up the guys that are on the field. He’s got to get healthy. Until he gets healthy, there really isn’t a whole lot to talk about.

On how much this injury sets Milliner back…

It would set any person back. At the same time, injuries happen. You lose guys, the next guy steps in and has to go play. Until the guy gets rehabbed and back out on the field, there’s really not a whole lot to talk about. One of the things I was taught about injuries, you can’t get emotional about them. They happen, they’re a part of football.

On on the Scott Chandler touchdown during the Buffalo game…

(It was a) blown coverage, a lack of communication. It happens. Realistically, we’re not going to be perfect right now, we have seven new starters on defense and we’re going to make some mistakes. We have to live with those. The key is not to replicate and duplicate mistakes. The key is to learn from it and move on and get ready to play the next play and then obviously the next game.

On if he is preparing to play without Milliner on Sunday…

We do what we do. You guys have seen that haven’t you. We haven’t changed much. This defense is not built on one player. This defense is built on having guys that can do multiple things. To play corner here for the New York Jets, you have to be able to play man-to-man. It doesn’t matter who the body is, it’s can he go out and do the job.

On what he has learned about Coach Mornhinweg and the way he calls offense…

Nothing. I’m not even looking at it. That’s his job, we have to do our job. Honestly, I being very honest I’m not being a wise (guy) but I mean we have a job to do. Our job, when our offense is on the field, my head is buried in the book trying to figure out what they’re doing to us. He has a job to do. We have a job to do. I really don’t pay much attention. Since I don’t pay much attention, (and) I don’t watch replays of a televised copy, I really don’t know what our offense is doing. I just look at the scoreboard and if they got some points, yay for us, then we have to go play defense.

On Kyle Wilson’s play during the Buffalo game…

It happens, it’s not a big deal. It’s a teaching moment, it gives us an opportunity to pull our guys together and say, “Hey, we have to be poised and we have to be in control out there.” Certain things are going to happen to you in a football game and on the football field. You don’t always have to try and take care of it and show bravado at that point in time. The football gods will allow you to get even with a guy, especially if he’s wronged you. It may not happen in that game, it may not happen the next time you play him. But at some point along the line you’ll get a chance, it will be a fair, clean hit and you’ll get your opportunity to get to pay him back. So you just have to wait and be patient and keep your head in the game.

On if it is easier to say Wilson’s play was not a big deal because they won…

No. It would be the same, it’s a teaching moment. There’s teaching moments in every game, win or lose. The most important thing is that you use the moments and the opportunities to teach these young guys not only the physical parts of the game but the mental and emotional parts of the game. Because being in control and having poise in tough situations when things appear to be unraveling is very important because at some point during the season you’re going to face that situation again. To be able to handle it in a different way will be a benefit to us.

On if Wilson should know better as he is in his fourth year…

Fourth year? You’re on the border. Yeah, I mean to a degree you would think so, but everybody’s personality is different. People react differently to different things. You hope to not have to deal with that situation ever, even if it’s a rookie. You hope to never have to deal with it but at the same time if you do, you deal with it. Kyle knows, he knows and hopefully he’s learned his lesson.

On if Wilson had done anything like that prior…

Not really, it happens. The most poised individual can unravel at times. People react differently to different things. Who knows what’s going on in someone’s personal life? I don’t know. You may take that out on to a football field. How people react and respond, you could have something else going on. Like I said, it’s a teaching moment. We’ll take advantage of and we’ve already taken advantage of it. We’ve dealt with this.

On if Wilson’s last penalty call was fair…

If the official threw the flag, he saw it the way he saw it. We don’t really get an opportunity to question those guys. They got 15 yards and we had to go deal with it, and we felt like we did.

On whether he told Wilson about the “Football gods”…

Yeah, that was part of it. That was part of the conversation. It happens. Trust me, when guys have been wrong on that football field by someone, ask them, did they get a chance to get revenge? More times than not, ok they’ll tell you “yes.” It happens that way - just the way it’s supposed to happen.

On how Wilson was wrong…

In his own way he felt like certain things that happened to him out there and he felt that he had gone to the official and felt like he talked to him and nothing changed.

On how much of a threat is Jake Locker to make plays with his legs…

(He’s a) tremendous (threat). He’s a great athlete. He’s got good size, good speed and he’s a treat anytime he has the ball under his arm. The guy is an excellent football player and he’s doing a good job of leading them. They’ve been down in some games and he’s brought them back. They had a legitimate chance to win that Houston game. So, they’re 2-1 and they’re playing at home. It’s going to be a tough game.

On whether the defense has to be perfect when playing against Johnson...

Yeah, because he has the ability to break the long one at any point in time. He’s a threat from anywhere on the field. He’s a threat anytime he has the ball under his arm. So, yeah, you do, you have to play almost a perfect game in terms of wrapping him up, knowing where he is, setting the edge, catching screen passes, catching swing passes. It’s constant and he’s a threat at all times.

On what needs to happen to maintain pressure on the quarterback…

Well, you know, we’ve got to go do our job. It’s about being able to convert from a run threat opportunity in terms of the offense to being able to convert to a pass rusher and we feel like we have athletes up there that can do that. And those guys are getting coached by, I think, one of the best defensive line coaches in the league in Karl Dunbar. And he’s not only done a wonderful job with our young guys, his record speaks for itself, for what he did at Minnesota. So, we’re happy to have him.

On the competiveness amongst the defensive linemen…

They’re very competitive. I mean, when you have guys that are similar in age, they’re all defensive lineman, they’re good athletes, they’re all talking about, “Hey, who’s going to get the most sacks? Who’s going to get to the quarterback first? Who’s going to make the most tackles?” I mean it becomes a competitive thing within the group. As long as it remains positive, it’s a good thing and they’re all pushing each other to get better. It’s good to see.

On how much they expected Quinton Coples to play against Buffalo…

We didn’t anticipate him playing as much as he played, but he said he felt good and he wanted to play. You could sense that when he was out, that watching Mo (Muhammad Wilkerson) and Sheldon (Richardson) and watching Snacks (Damon Harrison), that he was dying to get back out on the field. His rehabilitation was fantastic. He did a great job with our trainers and our doctors, so for him it was an opportunity to get back out on the field and get with his guys. He did a nice job for us.

On whether he got on Richardson for celebrating before the play was over…

Another teaching moment (laughter). The play’s not over until the whistle blows. It’s fun. Some of it appears to just look crazy, but in the meeting rooms it’s actually fun, especially now. That part of it is good after you win, because the teaching moment doesn’t have to be so serious. But, it’s a teaching moment and you can have some fun with it. You always have to play until you hear the whistle blow and that was one of the things we had to stress to our guys is that if you don’t hear the whistle blow, don’t stop.

On whether there has been an emphasis on takeaways this week in practice…

Yeah, I mean but you always emphasize taking the ball away. But, to me that comes with a more experienced team because they know what they’re supposed to be doing. They know what the offense is trying to do to them, so they’re not out there thinking as much. When you’re a younger defense, there’s times where those guys are just trying to get done what they need to get done. If you starting thinking, “Oh, god I got to take the ball away,” then that becomes your focus. Usually takeaways, in terms of interceptions, by defensive backs and linebackers, come when you’re doing your job. Fumbles (are) a matter of being aggressive, putting your helmet on the ball, striping the elbow, pulling the ball out and those types of things. I mean, we had two opportunities in the game, but we didn’t get them in terms of fumbles. Interceptions come when you’re playing from out front a lot of times and the other team’s forced to have to throw the football.

On whether blitzing a lot increases the chance of a giving up a big play…

I mean, you live by it, sometimes you die by it. It’s worked for us. Being aggressive and being an attacking defense is better than being a bend and don’t break. I’ve never been one of those guys to sit back and get cut up. You still bleed and if you’re going to die, die all at once. Don’t die slow.

On whether there is a solution to giving up a big play even when you do blitz…

Oh yeah, because everyone has a job to do and all 11 guys have to do their job. Then there’s times you play in the National Football League, those other guys get paid too, I mean they have some talented players as well, so it happens.

Tags: Transcript, Brian Bassett

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)

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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