Jets News

Rex Ryan Admits Stephen Hill was Counted on Too Much Too Soon

By Alan Schechter

Dec 2, 2012; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets wide receiver Stephen Hill (84) catches a pass while being defended by Arizona Cardinals cornerback William Gay (22) during the first half at Metlife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

Well, better late than never, as this is something we all knew in September of last year.

A guy who got a lot of attention this past season was Stephen Hill, and not always for good reasons. After catching 2 TDs in the season opener, he proved to have hands that were just not ready for prime time, with six dropped passes, only catching 45% of the passes thrown to him.

We talked a lot as the year opened, as to whether or not Stephen Hill would be ready to be the number 2 wide receiver as a rookie, with most of us on the side that he WOULDN’T be ready.

Rex Ryan was asked about that last week at his press conference from the Combine, and here is what he had to say:

I don’t know. That’s a possibility. I think when you look at it. Actually, let me go back on that. No, he never did because he had two touchdowns his first game, so I’m glad we played him. In Week Two, maybe, but when you look at it, you see what he has – that height, that speed, those intangibles like that. It is a process. There’s no question about it. I’m always reminded that Jerry Rice never started as a rookie. I don’t know who was coaching him, but it does show you the greatest receiver of all time never even started as a rookie. So it is challenging. Guys really do make improvements going into year two and I expect Stephen to do that.

Well, he partially admitted it. He started to, but then went back on it, but you know Rex. He doesn’t come to these conclusions too easily. Him thinking about it is a start.

We did that last September.