New York Jets 2015 Training Camp Profile: Calvin Pryor


Due to injuries and poor play, the New York Jets tried using the former 2014 first round selection Calvin Pryor at free safety excessively last season. It was a predictable, chaotic mess that resulted in the former No. 18 overall pick being benched back in November. However, this season converted cornerback Marcus Gilchrist will handle the free safety duties which will allow Pryor to go back to his more natural duties of strong safety. We should all see significant improvement from Pryor this upcoming season.

With the Jets entering the 2015 season with a win-now mentality, owner Woody Johnson wants to see his team push for a play-off berth, something the team has not done since 2010. Despite the off-season transactions, it takes more than one man to lead a team to victory.

More from Jets News

The Jets enter the season with very high expectations, if they fail to contend for post-season glory, then this year will be considered another disappointment for Gotham.

The added pressure not only makes the job of newly hired head coach Todd Bowles more stressful, but it also makes it more likely for young, under-performing athletes to relinquish there roster spot on the team to veteran and more experienced players.

Pryor is one of those young under-performing guys on the team. The Louisville product had a largely disappointing season last year, struggling to adapt to the position of free safety and the pace of an NFL game itself. Granted, Pryor was playing somewhat out of position at free safety but he was still a liability last season, mostly in coverage.

With Gilchrist taking over free safety duties, Pryor will move back to his natural habitat at strong safety. The transition back to this position will allow him to play to his strengths which include crowding the box and making plays close to the line of scrimmage.

Added talent around Pryor could also hurt this upcoming season as he can’t afford to perform below expectations in his sophomore campaign. If Pryor plays out training camp showing little to no signs of improvement, Bowles may have no choice but to bench him in favor of a better option such as Antonio Allen or other safeties on the team fighting for a roster spot.

Nov 24, 2014; Detroit, MI, USA; New York Jets free safety Calvin Pryor (25) against the Buffalo Bills at Ford Field. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

Expectations are high this season not just for the Jets themselves after bringing back guys such as Darrelle Revis and Antonio Cromartie but for players such as Pryor. Many are calling Pryor a bust after his rookie year, not many know he wasn’t playing his actual position.

Look at players such as Orson Charles, a tight end who converted to full back for the Bengals. Converting positions are never easy for players, some players are flexible and the transition comes naturally to them while others require years of practice and dedication to get the job done consistently.

Pryor thankfully will not have to worry about perfecting the role of free safety. He just needs to show that he hasn’t forgotten how to play his natural position of strong safety this time around.

Next: New York Jets: Summer Camp Day

More from The Jet Press