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Jets Kick off Mandatory Camp; Some Names to Look out for

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The New York Jets will kick off their mandatory minicamp today which could tell us a few things about the current state of the roster.  Here are a few players and developments to look out for.

Will Haason Reddick attend?

It wouldn’t be the Jets if there wasn’t at least one negative story for fans to focus on and Reddick is that story today.  While an absent Reddick will mean close to nothing at this point in the offseason, it will undoubtedly cause alarm among some Jets fans.  A premier edge rusher for whom the Jets gave up a third-round pick, Reddick has just one year left on his deal.  There are rumblings suggesting the Eagles dealt Reddick because he wanted a monster deal which would now be the Jets problem.

Some may panic, but let’s talk in August and see where Reddick is at that point.  If he’s not at training camp, concerns will be justified.

Aaron Rodgers’ workload:

Rodgers being under center isn’t news anymore.  He was cleared as a full go and looked good during voluntary workouts.  How will the Jets balance the development of chemistry with Rodgers and his receivers while also avoiding putting too much strain on his Achilles early on?

Will Izzy Abanikanda take part?

Yes, we expect Abanikanda to be in attendance and willing to do whatever is asked of him.  However, if the voluntary portion of camp a couple of weeks ago are any indication, he may not do much of anything.

One of the most explosive players on the Jets roster, Abanikanda was basically a spectator during OTA’s while rookies Braelon Allen and Isaiah Davis got plenty of touches ahead of him.

As the Jets appear to be headed toward more of a power run game, it’s possible they no longer view Abanikanda as a scheme fit.  It would be a shame if the Jets are unable to find a role for Abanikanda given what he’s capable of doing with the ball in his hands.

Time for Tight Ends to Step up:

Jeremy Ruckert’s time is now.  The New York native enters his third year after being a non-factor through his first two seasons.  With Aaron Rodgers presumably taking the bulk of the snaps this season, Ruckert has to step up and become a weapon in this offense.  If the Jets were smart, they’d give Ruckert all of the team’s snaps at fullback and save a roster spot by parting ways with Nick Bawden.

There are only so many mouth to feed on offense so it’s not realistic to expect three or four different tight ends to put up huge numbers.  Even still, expect to see Kenny Yeboah get his first real shot to contribute on offense.  The undrafted free agent out of Mississippi has been a special teamer just 64 receiving yards through three seasons.  The team spoke well of him this offseason and he should get a shot to do more this year.  Getting him some work with Aaron Rodgers this week would be a good start.

And another tight end…Zack Kuntz.

The 2023 seventh round pick took a red shirt first season but should have a real shot to make the roster this year and at the very least offer the Jets a red zone target with his 6′ 8” frame.

Who will challenge for bottom of the cornerback depth chart?

The Jets are set with their three starting corners in Sauce Gardner, DJ Reed and Michael Carter.  But behind them, there’s not much NFL experience.  Brandin Echols has fifteen career starts but 14 of those came three years ago.  Isaiah Oliver has 44 career starts but is now working at safety and hasn’t started more than six games in a season since 2020.  After that?  Rookies Qwan’tez Stiggers, Shemar Bartholomew, Brandon Codrington, Myles Jones and veteran Tae Hayes who has never started a game.

Keep an eye on Jones who had a strong start to his college career at Texas A&M before a litany of injuries and a covid exemption led to a seven year college career.  He’s got terrific size at 6′ 4” 163 with length and good anticipation.  He could be a dark horse to stick on the bottom of the depth chart.

Will Brownlee Supplant Lazard?

It’s no secret that the Jets loved the undrafted Brownlee out of Southern Miss.  He didn’t do much as a rookie but does a better job of attacking the football than Lazard, whose laid back attitude and poor performance may not be what the Jets are looking for in a boundary receiver.

His friendship with Rodgers may save him, but if Lazard continues to drop football this week as he did last year and during OTA’s, he may be pushing himself down the depth chart.

Will anyone step up at safety?

Chuck Clark and Tony Adams figure on being the team’s top two safeties.  Behind them it gets a bit murky.  Ashtyn Davis was one of the team’s most improved players last year and could push for more reps this season.  The aforementioned Isaiah Oliver is coming over from corner to work at safety while second-year DB Jarrick Bernard-Converse has played a bit of safety and corner since being drafted.

Jaylen Key was the final pick of the draft and figures as a project who may not be ready in year one.

With such a thin group, the Jets may look to add a veteran at some point but this week may give us some idea as to who they’re leaning on to step up this year.

The post Jets Kick off Mandatory Camp; Some Names to Look out for appeared first on – New York Jets Blog & Forum. You can discuss this with other NY Jets fans on the Jet Nation message board. Or visit of on Facebook.


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