The NY Jets have high expectations for their 2021 rookie class, both in the near and distant future. Those rookies are already being put into high-profile roles, and they haven't even been on the team for two months yet.
The Jets have seemingly committed to giving the young players on their roster as many reps as possible early in spring practices.
As a result, a whopping eight of the team's 10 draft picks have received first-team reps this spring. The only two to not work with the first-team offense/defense at all have been fifth-round pick Jamien Sherwood and sixth-round pick Jonathan Marshall.
And consider the fact that Marshall has been out with an injury and Sherwood is only behind fellow rookie, Hamsah Nasirildeen, on the depth chart. Evidently, the Jets are trying to get their young players on the field as much as possible.
The NY Jets are maximizing playing time for their 2021 rookie class.
Zach Wilson and Alijah Vera-Tucker are locks to start Week 1 so it's no surprise to see them getting all the first-team reps at their respective positions.
But it's not just them.
Elijah Moore has stolen the show at OTAs and minicamp with a performance for the ages. Running back Michael Carter is closing in on taking the lead back role away from Tevin Coleman and figures to be an important part of the backfield rotation.
Cornerbacks Jason Pinnock and Michael Carter II each continue to receive plenty of first-team reps and could push for starting jobs as soon as Week 1.
Pinnock has been the primary cornerback opposite Bryce Hall with Blessuan Austin out nursing an injury. Meanwhile, Carter appears to be the early favorite for the starting nickel cornerback job and has received more first-team reps than any other slot corner on the roster.
That includes sixth-round pick Brandin Echols who received his first taste of first-team reps on Tuesday when he entered the first day of minicamp as the team's primary nickel cornerback.
Finally, there's the aforementioned Nasirildeen who has been starting at weak-side linebacker with Blake Cashman out injured. Nasirildeen will be given every chance to win the starting job, especially with Cashman's injury woes.
That's not all though. A pair of undrafted rookies have also received first-team reps as well with cornerback Isaiah Dunn splitting time with Pinnock at cornerback in OTAs and Kenny Yeboah receiving some snaps with the ones on Tuesday.
Of course, there's also Chris Naggar who is competing with Sam Ficken for the kicker job.
The Jets could realistically have five or more rookies in their starting lineup come Week 1. That's a testament to just how young and inexperienced the roster is as much as it is praise for how the team's rookies have performed.
The youth movement is in full swing in Florham Park. It truly is a new era for the NY Jets.