Follow a lot of the local coverage of Sunday's Jets-Buccaneers season opener and you'd swear the game will be a positional drill decided on how many passes
Such as how to contain Doug Martin, the Bucs' mighty-mite tailback from Boise State.
"He's shifty and he's strong," said OLB
McIntyre will have a big role in that and not just because he's so good with football phrases. With
"And he had 1,900 yards from scrimmage so he can catch the ball out of the backfield," he said. "If we're going to be productive on defense, it starts with stopping him."
McIntyre's now a grizzled NFL veteran, and it only took him those two Arena League seasons and two CFL seasons before he could get started on becoming a third-year Jets LB. He says he still follows the Hamilton Ti-Cats weekly online, but only because many of his friends are still there, not because he'll need to return there and hit the ground running as a player.
"At this point in my career, I might as well start figuring out what I'm going to do after football instead of going back up there and beating up my body more for less pay," he said. "But it's a great game. I have a lot of respect for the CFL. It's more about being quick, being able to rush the passer. So yeah, it fits me.
"But I can fit in any league. I've seen three different styles of football, and I think that's helped me become the player that I am."
That player that Mac is would love to get to QB Josh Freeman a few times on Sunday, like he did in Game 2 last year when he dropped Ben Roethlisberger twice in Pittsburgh. But those opportunities will only open up if the Jets close down Martin's rush lanes first.
Ivory Assesses His Old Foes
Both will be needed Sunday because Tampa was the league's No. 1 rush defense last year, led by LB Lavonte David and Pro Bowl DT Gerald McCoy. (But they were 29th in overall defense due to their last-place ranking in pass defense.)
"And they look faster," said Ivory, who used to play the Bucs as a backup RB with the Saints. Then, referencing FS Dashon Goldson being added to the deep middle alongside Mark Barron, he added, "They were already a fast defense and I think those guys on the back end at the safety spot, they look pretty good."
But Ivory knew how to find the cracks in that defense in the past. In three career games vs. the Bucs, he averaged 12.3 carries for 86.0 yards, which calculates to 7.0 yards per carry.
Another emphasis of today's practice was on penalties, as in not committing them. "We're back to doing our pushups," Ryan said. "Last year, I thought, as soon as we did that, the penalties went way down. So we're starting the season rather than waiting till five weeks in or whatever." Actually, the yellow flags stopped falling after our Week 9 bye last year. In the first half of the season the Jets were averaging 6.4 penalties for 59.4 yards per game. In the second half the averages were 4.0 penalties and 29.1 yards.
Holmes (foot) and