With the week coming to a close on the first of the OTAs in the books for the New York Jets, I thought we could take a look at some of the news making the rounds on the net. At this time of year most of what we are reading is projection and speculation, but it can be fun to take a look! The important thing to remember is none of what you are reading is written in stone, there is a long summer ahead before the lights come on at MetLife Stadium!
Chan Gailey’s Comments On The QB Competition: Chan Gailey was quoted as saying there would be no competition for the Jets starting QB job. Much has been made of Chan’s comments, fans are upset over these comments, some even claiming the Jets season is over already if Smith is given the job.
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I understand the reaction, Jet fans have endured several years now without a real QB competition. Fans should be reading between the lines here though. Gailey isn’t going to come out and say Fitzpatrick is competing for the starters job when he’s still recovering!
He is going to state the obvious…Smith is the starter going in, and they expect it to stay that way. That’s not to say that if Fitzpatrick out plays Smith over the summer, that he won’t be given the opportunity to start. That would be plain foolishness in May! Smith is your incumbent and he will remain the starter until he proves he can’t hold the job. Relax Jet Fans!
Missing Personnel At OTA’s: The Jets started their first organized team activities this week, and the absence of Muhammad Wilkerson was duly noted on the first day. Mo is currently involved in ongoing contract negotiations, and his absence has led many to believe he will hold out this summer. Also missing from activities this week is Sheldon Richardson, and HC Todd Bowles apparently doesn’t know why.
Brandon Marshall missed some time as well, but his absence was short lived after taking care of some “business.” It’s just my take, but there is nothing to get excited about just yet. While it is not an ideal way to get things underway, these activities are voluntary. Wilkerson hasn’t said he is holding out from camp, he simply hasn’t shown up for these activities as some sort of protest. I wouldn’t get too upset about him until he misses anything mandatory.
You’d really like to see Richardson at the practice facilities however. While it is still voluntary, you want your young guys here to learn the new system. I’d expect Sheldon to show up sooner then later. Marshall’s absence is of lesser concern even. He missed a day while taking care of some personal stuff, but he’s reportedly been joined at the hip with Smith since he signed. Marshall needs to go slow and stay healthy!
Jeremy Kerley Comes Up Lame: Kerley reportedly was slowed by a leg injury on Tuesday and Wednesday. While very early on, it is a bit concerning that one of your starters is experiencing leg troubles. Kerley reportedly told reporters that it was just a bit of tightness and nothing serious, but you still need to be concerned. Is Kerley reporting to team activities out of shape?
He’s had several run ins with hamstring problems in his Jet career, could this be a sign that these will be lingering problems? The Jets need Kerley healthy and ready to go this season. I’m hoping this one gets taken care of quickly.
Nov 24, 2014; Detroit, MI, USA; New York Jets wide receiver Jeremy Kerley (11) against the Buffalo Bills at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports
Todd Bowles Has Team Fired Up: Bowles addressed his team prior to holding his first OTA’s for the Jets. According to players and the media pundits alike, it was a fiery speech in which he challenged his players to go out there and compete! From everything I’m reading, Bowles has the leadership qualities the Jets have seemingly lacked from their head coach for a number of years now.
He’s told them he’ll hold them personally responsible for their play and has gotten a bunch of positive reactions in the media from his players as a result. One thing became crystal clear from Bowles’ comments this week; this is NOT business as usual around the Jets franchise this year!
That’s just a quick trip through the web. I’m sure we could find a few more to speculate about if we tried. Things surrounding the Jets appear to be firing on all cylinders going ahead. You’ve read my takes on them, now we want to hear what you think! Leave some comments below and let’s talk some Jet football!