Trading Wayne Hunter and reaching the end zone, all in the same week. Coincidence? Yeah, probably, but I thought it would be funny to pretend it wasn’t for two seconds.
The Jets scored their first touchdown of the 2012 preseason on Thursday night, courtesy of third- string quarterback Greg McElroy’s 6-yard pass to RB Terrance Ganaway . The Jets went 37 drives and 198 plays in 13 quarters before reaching the end zone, total of 201 minutes and 5 seconds.
Unfortunately it means next to nothing as it happened in the fourth preseason game, the most “meaningless”of all meaningless football games.
Oh yeah, and the Jets lost to the Eagles 28-10 tonight, but no one really cares about the score of preseason games, except of course the people who like to compose clever tweets making fun of the team’s
that haven’t scored a touchdown have only scored one touchdown.
Here are a few things you can take away from tonight’s game, with thoughts on the roster cuts, which must be complete by 9 pm tomorrow.
1. Greg MeElroy: The third string looked excellent – far better than Tebow has looked in a Jets’ uniform this preseason, not sayin’, just sayin’ – going 12-17 for 90 yards (108.9 passer rating) and the night’s only touchdown. He also had 5 carries for 30 yards, officially making three of the Jets’ four quarterbacks more efficient running the ball than any Jets’ running back. Just kidding. Kind of.
McElroy demonstrated excellent pocket presence, poise, vision, accuracy (novel concept) and guts. Really looking forward to seeing more from Greg at some point in the future, though I tend to doubt we will get many opportunities, if any, come the regular season.
2. Jason Smith and Austin Howard: For a guy that showed up two days ago, new offensive tackle Jason Smith had a pretty decent showing. He was expected to play about 10 snaps — but he played the majority of the first half at left tackle. It’s way too early to know much of anything, but perhaps a change of pace really will give Smith’s career a second life.
Austin Howard, who played very well last weekend vs. the Panthers, did not follow up with the kind of performance that ensures job security. He will definitely start week 1, but it will be interesting to see how he comes along this year.
3. Jordan White and the bubble wide receivers: I’ve been rooting for rookie WR Jordan White all off-season, especially after interviewing him last week on Flight 5, but I am simply not confident he has done enough in games to earn a spot on the regular roster.
Eron Riley had a very nice game and seemed to have a good report with McElroy, but ultimately I am not sure where he is in relation to the other bubble guys.
The Jets have some very important decisions to make with the wide receiving group, decisions that could prove to be highly significant down the stretch this season. Ultimately, I think White and Patrick Turner take the final two spots (after Holmes, Hill, and Kerley), and Chaz Schilens,who just hasn’t had the time on the field, is let go.
4. McKnight, Powell, Ganaway: Powell and Ganaway both did enough tonight to make the team. John Connor however, may not be so lucky.
I simply do know what to make of Joe McKnight. He will make the team – no question of that – but seems to be struggling to play consistently. He shows flashes of potential, only to follow it up with total blunders and mental mistakes.
The real question is who takes the #2 spot, Powell or McKnight?
5. Coples, Richardson and defensive depth: Jay Richardson continued to make the case for a spot on the final roster, but is there room for him? Meanwhile, Quinton Coples had his fourth straight preseason game with a sack.
The defensive line – the obvious strength of this team – might present the Jets with their greatest challenge tonight. I predict Harrison and Tevaseu are released tomorrow, Richardson and Dixon remain.
6. Linebackers: After lots of buzz from his performance in Cortland, Aaron Maybin has had a very quiet preseason, while Demario Davis has earned himself a spot in the regular rotation. Both guys will make the final roster. As for the remaining LBs on the bubble – Marcus Dowtin, Brett Roy, Ricky Sapp, even Josh Mauga, Nick Bellore and Garrett McIntyre? That’s another story.
I’m very interested in seeing what happens with Dowtin. He’s got a lot of talent but opinions are very split on whether or not he makes the final roster.
7. Defensive backs: Another position with a lot of guys on the bubble. Injury issues will make the decision-making process even more complicated, and make cost several guys their jobs. Rex Ryan loves defensive backs, and he could cut guys today only to bring them back tomorrow.