Training Camp Profile: LB Lorenzo Mauldin

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - NOVEMBER 27: Nate Solder #77 of the New England Patriots in action against Lorenzo Mauldin #55 of the New York Jets during their game at MetLife Stadium on November 27, 2016 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - NOVEMBER 27: Nate Solder #77 of the New England Patriots in action against Lorenzo Mauldin #55 of the New York Jets during their game at MetLife Stadium on November 27, 2016 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images) /

Heading into training camp, linebacker Lorenzo Mauldin has a lot to prove in order to bounce back from his lackluster 2016 season with the New York Jets.

The New York Jets have made one thing evidently clear: they are preparing for the future, not for a Super Bowl run in 2017. The Jets all-but cleaned house this past offseason, saying farewell to a surplus of veterans, including quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick, cornerback Darrelle Revis, kicker Nick Folk, offensive lineman Breno Giacomini, Pro Bowl center Nick Mangold, and wide receiver Brandon Marshall. This leaves the door open for anyone to start, anyone to make the roster, and anyone to have an impact.

One guy the Jets will certainly have high expectations for is outside linebacker Lorenzo Mauldin, a 2015 3rd Round pick, who looked sharp in his rookie campaign but took a step back (both on and off the field, including a night club incident where he was arrested). Head coach Todd Bowles has shown confidence in Mauldin’s abilities in the past, but he will have to show his talent each day until Opening Kickoff in September if he wants to start for this team.

Take a look below at his complete profile heading into training camp.


In 2016, Mauldin was expected to be an integral part of the Jets defense, alongside veteran linebacker David Harris and rookie linebacker Darron Lee. However, Mauldin looked lost on the field and was often benched for his lackluster play. When asked about his play, Mauldin was the first to admit he did not play well at all and attributed a preseason weight gain to the issue. He tried to gain weight, hoping it would bring him more power to stop opposing running backs, but it had a negative impact, as it slowed him down from his primary strength: pass rushing.

Mauldin slowly watched as his playing time dipped each week. In the season opener against Cincinnati, Mauldin played 23 snaps, followed by 22 in Buffalo and 17 in Kansas City. And then in Week 4, Mauldin only played six snaps, a key indicator that he would need to fix something or he would see the end of his days in New York.

Mauldin finished the season with just 2.5 sacks and lost confidence. If he wanted to start or even be involved in the Jets typically-stout defense, he had to work hard for 2017.

More from Jets News


To say Mauldin came back this spring with a chip on his shoulder would be an understatement. First, Mauldin returned eight pounds lighter than last season, understanding the importance of returning to his versatile form as a pass rusher.

Additionally, the Jets made major changes in their coaching staff, including hiring a new outside linebackers coach in Pro Football Hall of Famer Kevin Greene, which could certainly benefit Mauldin, as Greene was famous for his pass-rushing abilities and could show Mauldin a thing or two, and perhaps change certain techniques.

As per Darryl Slater of the New York Post, Greene has already said some positive remarks about his initial start with the Jets:

“…[Mauldin] and all my kids, they’re going to be more physical players than they have been in the past. I think the sky is limit the for all my kids,” Greene said regarding Mauldin and the rest of the OLBs. “I’m teaching my kids technique and fundamentals not based on athletic ability and skill. It’s based on physicality. It’s based on drive and desire.”

Although it may seem like the Jets wiped out their entire roster in the offseason, they did maintain one important component: the core front on the defensive line. They still have Sheldon Richardson and Muhammad Wilkerson, despite their off-field incidents and constant trade talks, and they have the future of the franchise in Leonard Williams. This could only benefit someone like Mauldin, as opposing offensive lines will be focused on containing the big three in many games.

If the change of coach and weight loss benefit Mauldin as much as it’s been talked about, we could see a huge year out of him, something the coaching staff and fans have been waiting for. He has extreme upside and if he avoids any injuries or off-field altercations, the sky is the limit for Mauldin.


Although on the current Jets depth chart, Mauldin is listed as a backup to both Richardson and Jordan Jenkins, I believe Mauldin could win the starting job from Jenkins if he continues to work and show the coaches he has the talent that they expect from him. The Jets have also constantly explored trades for Richardson, so that is not ruled out of the equation. Mauldin’s spot on the 53-man roster is certainly not in jeopardy, but if he wants to start, he will need to be consistent and precise in all of his preparations for the season.

Must Read: Top 5 training camp hopefuls that can make final roster

It seems likely that Mauldin will not face punishment from the NFL in 2017 for his club fight back in April, however, he may face discipline in the future, so Mauldin will need to keep his focus on the field, avoid any additional distractions, and come out and dominate in 2017. Mauldin has the talent and determination to do it, now he just has to execute and prove coaches and doubters wrong.