Found May 08, 2013 on
Turn On The Jets:
New York Jets
One of Rex Ryan’s favorite defenses last season was the 4-2 nickel slide. We discussed it briefly in this article overviewing the Jets defense but basically it replaces a linebacker with an extra defensive back, who flexes out over the slot receiver, while the Jets move down to a 4 man front.
One of the most critical positions in this defense and one of the most critical positions in today’s NFL for any defense is the slot corner. Here are a few different articles discussing the position in depth from Pro Football Focus and ESPN but generally it is your nickel back, who will be responsible for covering the slot receiver, along with playing in the box to provide run support and in Rex Ryan’s defense will be asked to blitz off the edge relatively frequently.
Considering the influx of spread offenses and teams running the ball from 3-wide sets more than ever, versatility and physicality are of increasing importance for a slot corner. He won’t just be matched up on a team’s #3 receiver for man coverage against the pass. He will have to handle tight ends or H-Backs when they are flexed out, he will have to prepared for frequent runs at him out of a spread formation and as mentioned before he will need to get after the quarterback, particularly in the Jets defense.
In 2012, there was a wide range of players rolling through the position for the Jets. In their week 7 game against New England, little used Isaiah Trufant was given the assignment with hopes of slowing down Wes Welker. For a role player, Trufant played admirably well in this game. However, considering his size (5-7, 170 pounds) he is not a realistic week to week option. He is also a bubble player on the 2013 roster.
The player who probably took the most reps at the spot in 2012 was Eric Smith (shown below against Seattle). Smith is a safety and at 6-1, 207 pounds provided adequate run support and decent pressure off the edge. Yet he is a major liability in coverage, particularly against quicker tight ends and wide receivers. Here is one of his rare positive moments from the position last season but overall there is a reason he hasn’t been a signed by a team yet.
Kyle Wilson also saw a good-sized share of reps at the spot, as later in the season the Jets began moving Wilson back inside and allowing Ellis Lankster or Darrin Walls to play more on the outside. Wilson is 5-10, 190 pounds and is generally a willing tackler against the run. Yet, his man to man coverage is inconsistent at best and he has never showed any effectiveness as a blitzer coming off the edge.
2nd year safety Antonio Allen was given a few select chances at the role in his rookie season. Including his first NFL action against the Indianapolis Colts, where he actually started the game with a blitz off the edge from the position. In the second quarter, Allen would record his first NFL sack on a similar play. He has good size at 6-2, 202 pounds and is more than willing to stick his nose in for run support. Allen really plays more like a linebacker than a safety but that also means he struggles with coverage, particularly against quicker players.
So who do the Jets turn to for this position in 2013? Expect to see some type of platoon situation depending on the match-up or how the season progresses but the following players should be in the mix -
Kyle Wilson - The de-facto number one option at this spot to start the season out. Wilson has good size for a corner and doesn’t hesitate to play physical but his continued troubles tracking the ball in the air and with quicker slot receivers is endlessly frustrating.
Antonio Allen - Flashed intriguing potential last year. He must improve his coverage or he can never be used extensively at this spot. Allen has the highest ceiling as a blitzer and in run support though.
Aaron Berry - Keep an eye on Berry to have a bigger overall role in the Jets defense this year, particularly at this spot. He is lankier than Wilson but has better natural cover skills, particularly in man to man. If Berry shows himself to be a willing defender against the run and can bring some heat off the edge, he could diminish Wilson’s playing time substantially.
Darrin Walls - Another guy who you need to watch this pre-season. Walls came on strong at the end of last year and has good size at 6 foot, 190 pounds. The physical talent is there to be a factor on the Jets defense and now he has some experience under his belt.
Jaiquawn Jarrett - An Eagles draft-bust and castoff, the Jets scooped up Jarrett who is currently their #4 safety. At 6 foot, 196 pounds maybe Jarrett can find a new home in the slot. He should be adequate in run support but can he overcome coverage issues unlike Eric Smith?
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
Geno Smith, drafted in the second round by the Jets, has responded to several unflattering allegations recently made about him, saying, "I don’t worry about what people say."
The New York Jets have agreed to terms on four-year deals with two of their seven draft picks: offensive lineman Brian Winters and fullback Tommy Bohanon.
Winters' agent Joel Segal confirmed the agreement Thursday night, but declined to give financial details. The deal is believed to be for close to $3 million.
Winters, a third-rounder out of Kent State, is expected to compete...
New York Jets rookie quarterback Geno Smith is firing back at the criticism of his actions before and after the draft, telling Jim Corbett of USA Today that what's being said about him isn't true.
Jaosn Cole of Yahoo! Sports was first with the story about Smith being more interesting in social networking on his phone during visits with teams than showing them why he should...
Provided the rusty 35-year-old remains healthy, one rival executive predicted to NFL Network’s Kim Jones that quarterback David Garrard will start Week 1 for the New York Jets against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on September 8. Tentatively slated to battle rookie Geno Smith and abysmal chucker Mark Sanchez for the starting job, the 6-foot-1, 235 pound Gerrard could be an ideal Band...
Since Jets’ receiver Santonio Holmes can’t play yet, it seems he has taken it upon himself to decide who will be the starting quarterback this year.
According to Conner Orr of the Star-Ledger, this is what Holmes had to say.
On the quarterback competition: “Right now, it’s Sanchez and that’s who we’re going with and we’re going to continue on this road until time permits...
BRING HIM IN
Some people really want the Jags to sign free agent quarterback Tim Tebow. There are radio ads telling the team to sign the QB.
If you're an NFL fan, you typically fall into one of two classifications: those who are for Tim Tebow and those against him.
It's quite obvious where a certain sect of Jaguars fans stand.
The Bold City Brigade, a Jags booster club now in its second year, has started a website, Evenifhesreleased.com, to combat the swirling Tebow rumors, petitions, and PR campaigns.
New York Jets owner Woody Johnson had a few words for Geno Smith Tuesday preparing him for what lies ahead in Jetsland.
Manish Mehta of The New York Daily News spoke with Johnson at the NFL's Career Development Symposium in Philadelphia and relayed this simple message to Smith:
"Welcome to the competition," said Johnson. "It’s going to be fun."...
For the Jacksonville Jaguars, Tim Tebow is old news.
Even with a segment of Jaguars fans pushing for the franchise to sign Tebow now that the Jacksonville-area native and former University of Florida star is a free agent. Even with the Jaguars having an unsettled situation at quarterback with Blaine Gabbert and Chad Henne.
New general manager David Caldwell hasn't changed his...
Tim Tebow is still in search of an NFL job, and many have speculated that the New England Patriots would be a logical destination if he is willing to give up on playing quarterback. Bill Belichick is known for getting the most out of players and showcasing their versatility, so some have wondered if the Patriots could use Tebow as an H-back or tight end.
According to Michael Silver...
With two key additions to their offensive backfield, the New York Jets are well on their way to reclaiming their ground and pound rushing game of yesteryear.
Forbes says so, anyway. Despite the fact Tebow is now unemployed after throwing just eight passes with the New York Jets in 2012, he's landed in the top spot on their annual list of the country's most influential athletes.
Here are the results (found influential by __%):
1. Tebow (29)
2. Michael Phelps (25)
3. Usain Bolt (23)
4. Derek Jeter (22)
The pre-game coin toss in the NFL is far from an exact science. When given the choice, some coaches prefer to always get the ball first while others would rather have the fallback of a possession to open the third quarter.Consider Buffalo Bills coach Doug Marrone in the latter camp."I like having the ball at halftime on offense because I think adjustments are big," Marrone...