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NY Jets sign two rookie minicamp standouts including intriguing WR

NY Jets, Calvin Jackson
NY Jets, Calvin Jackson / Rob Schumacher/The Republic / USA TODAY
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The NY Jets brought in a total of 55 tryout players for their rookie minicamp this past weekend. At the time of writing, only two have received actual contracts from the team.

The Jets announced on Monday that they had officially signed wide receiver Calvin Jackson Jr. and offensive lineman Derrick Kelly while waiving wide receiver D.J. Montgomery and tight end Brandon Dillon in the process.

Jackson went undrafted out of Washington State in the 2022 NFL Draft and was set for a minicamp invite from the Miami Dolphins until the Jets officially signed him on Monday.

Kelly was one of the few veteran players in camp having previously played for the New Orleans Saints in 2020 and the New York Giants in 2021. The 26-year-old has seven career games under his belt, although he's only played 34 offensive snaps in the NFL.

Kelly's experience could give him a chance to earn a role as a backup lineman on the team, although he does turn 27-years-old in August. At 6-foot-5, 320 pounds, Kelly has experience playing both guard and tackle and that versatility could work in his favor.

Calvin Jackson Jr. is an intriguing pickup for the NY Jets

Jackson is probably the more interesting addition of the two, however. The former Washington State standout had a limited role throughout his first three years with the Cougars hauling in just 38 catches through the 2020 season.

However, he broke out in 2021 finishing with 66 receptions for 978 yards and seven touchdowns, helped in part by a full-time move to the slot.

At just 5-foot-8, 193 pounds, the undersized Jackson was miscast as an outside receiver, where he played all but two snaps before his senior season at Washington State. Jackson was able to maximize his agility and YAC ability in the slot which allowed him to have the year that he did.

A former JUCO standout, Jackson was actually teammates with fellow Jets rookie Jermaine Johnson at Independence Community College before he transferred to Washington State. Now, the two are reunited again in Florham Park.

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Calvin Jackson faces an uphill battle as he looks to make the Jets' roster, but he overcame the longshot odds in rookie minicamp just to get to this point. He's someone to keep an eye on this summer.

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