NY Jets: 3 position battles to watch in 2021 training camp

NY Jets
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NY Jets, Blessuan Austin
NY Jets, Blessuan Austin / Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

3. NY Jets position battle: Cornerback

Here's a not-so-fun fact about the Jets cornerback situation. Who leads the team in career starts? None other than 2019 sixth-round pick Blessuan Austin, who has 16 over the past two seasons.

Yup, that’s right, the Jets have a serious experience deficiency at cornerback this season. Austin, who has had his ups and downs in his first two years, is the most experienced player at the position.

Meanwhile, Bryce Hall, a fifth-round pick in 2020, stands as the team’s likely No. 1 cornerback. Hall was a solid player in coverage last season, but like Austin, still has a way to go in order to consistently tap into his potential.

The Jets are well aware of the cornerback situation, and they have a plan. Saleh wants to give the younger guys as many reps and possible before even considering outside options.

That being said, the Jets have quite the open competition at the position for training camp. The team retains Javelin Guidry, Lamar Jackson, Zane Lewis, and Corey Ballentine from last season. They also added Justin Hardee in free agency, though he is primarily a special teamer.

New York has a handful of rookies looking to make their mark, including draft picks Jason Pinnock, Michael Carter II, and Brandin Echols.

As a matter of fact, Carter has already put himself in the driver’s seat to win the starting slot job. There is also undrafted rookie Isaiah Dunn, who was impressive during OTAs.

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At the end of the day, who knows who will win these competitions. Even so, one thing for sure is that it will be entertaining to watch these Jets battle it out during training camp.