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Sheldon Richardson Hasn't Forgotten Bengals

Posted Aug 9, 2014

Some Payback for '13 Loss Would Be Nice While DT Continues to Work on His Dominance

Coming off the 13-10 win over Indianapolis in the preseason opener on Thursday, one player on the Jets already has his eyes set on the road game a week from today in Cincinnati.

“We owe them one. We owe them one big-time,” DT Sheldon Richardson said about the 49-9 loss to the Bengals last Oct. 27. “That was probably pretty much the only team that dog-walked this defense like that, honestly, to me personally.”

The Bengals put up 402 yards on the Jets defense, with QB Andy Dalton throwing five touchdown passes, four to WR Marvin Jones.

On the opening drive, Dalton marched the offense down the field on a 10-play, 80-yard drive that took five minutes off the clock. Long drives for the Bengals were a big story in that game as four of the five touchdowns capped drives that were at least 68 yards long.

“They’re a deep-threat team,” Richardson said. “We gotta stop that. We gotta get a pass rush. We've just got to make it happen.”

DE Muhammad Wilkerson had the lone sack in the game for the Jets. Two plays later, Mo batted a Dalton pass to Richardson, who tipped it back to Wilkerson for his first career interception.

Against the Colts, the starting Jets defense allowed 206 first-half yards to the visitors. In the second half, the defense settled down as the twos and threes combined to allow just 16 yards of offense.

Richardson said the defense plans to take advantage of the unit’s depth in the game against Cincinnati.

“For us, from a defensive standpoint, we did all right. We got beat a couple times, a couple plays, but I’m more so concerned and happy about the twos and threes stepping in and there wasn’t any falloff, really,” Richardson said. “They ended up doing better than the ones did. Kudos to those guys.”

After the first preseason game, there are things every player is able to improve on and it’s the same for Richardson. The first game-like scenario he’s faced in 2014 gave him a few things to take away with him.

“Different blocking schemes, just chemistry-wise how my guys are moving in the games,” Richardson said of what he learned Thursday. “From practice to a game it’s a lot different because you know how the offensive line is moving [in practice].”

Richardson, the reigning NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year, is sure to be exposed to more double teams from opposing lines, perhaps even in the first half against the Bengals. But he sees those as being beneficial to the other Jets linemen.

“That means someone else on my defensive line or my box-seven is going to make a play,” he said. “That’s just how I look at it. I’m not a selfish guy at all, man. If I’m doing my job and somebody else is making the play who is supposed to be making the play, that’s a win for me.”

Richardson said he’s spent a majority of his time this offseason working on his technique so that he won't rely so much on his athleticism in games. His athleticism certainly helped him last year, he said, but he is looking to be a more complete player on the defensive interior.

With guidance and wise words from D-line coach Karl Dunbar, Richardson is poised to do just that in 2014.

“’Adjust to the game when it’s adjusting to you.’ It’s something he told me,” Richardson said of Dunbar. "Last year the game had to adjust to me and wasn’t ready. When they did get ready, I slowed down a little bit as far as my production and as far as getting penetration in the backfield.”

In terms of goals for the season, Richardson doesn’t have any numbers in mind for tackles, sacks or forced fumbles. There’s only one thing he wants to be.

“Nothing set for me, man. I just want to go out and be dominant,” he said. “Be a dominant force in the NFL, period. And make this defensive line somewhere where we’re supposed to be — somewhere on the top.”




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