A few of the Jets offensive starters missed Tuesday's voluntary workout, but offensive coordinator Chan Gailey viewed it as an opportunity for the coaching staff.
"What it does is it allows us to evaluate a lot of people. I think Todd said it best — it's like having injuries," Gailey said after the Jets completed OTA No. 2 without regulars Brandon Marshall, Eric Decker and Nick Mangold. "You have to find out who can play and who can do what, and who can go on the field and do what we need to get done on the field. So it's an opportunity for guys that are on the field and that's the way we have to approach it."
Without perhaps the top wideout tandem in football, Geno Smith got the job done late with Quincy Enunwa and Kenbrell Thompkins. On this May scorcher, Smith looked crisp in a two-minute situation while delivering a short laser to Enunwa before concluding his session with a long scoring toss to Thompkins.
"As Todd said, going into where we are exactly right now, Geno is working with the No. 1 team and everybody else is competing," Gailey said of the team's QB situation. "We're not putting numbers on everybody else, we're just saying everybody else is competing."
Last season, Gailey coordinated a unit that finished 10th overall offensively and set a new franchise record for total yards in a season (5,925).
"We have a base already in place. We have a group of players that have been here and know what's going on, and we've improved our overall roster I believe from top to bottom on offense," Gailey said. "So we're able to make better strides and do a little bit more now than we were able to do last year. We were taking baby steps last year — we're taking a little bit longer steps."
The key to long-term sustainability will be the development of the young players. After safety Calvin Pryor's breakthrough in 2015, the Green & White have high hopes for a couple of pro sophomores in DL Leonard Williams and OLB Lorenzo Mauldin.
"To me just being a former D-line coach and watching him every day, I think the sky's the limit for him. I really do," said defensive coordinator Kacy Rodgers of Williams. "I think he kind of went through his growing pains even though he played really well for us. His ceiling — I think — is super high."
While Williams collected 77 tackles and three sacks as a rookie, Mauldin became a factor down the stretch and finished with four sacks.
"Mauldin is a guy we expect a lot of," said Rodgers. "He seems a lot quicker and with a year of experience under his belt, we expect him to make a big leap forward."
Finally new Jets special teams coordinator Brant Boyer elaborated on his philosophy today.
"Five hundred MPH all the time. We're going to play snap to whistle and we're going to punch first," he said.
Boyer, who played 10 years in the NFL, said the message won't just come from him alone.
"Guys like Rontez Miles and (Trevor) Reilly and (Erin) Henderson and those kind of guys. I think those guys are kind of the energizer bunnies and they communicate really well," Boyer said. "I'm counting on guys like them, guys that are going to be here hopefully and take a leadership role and teach these young kids how it's done because a lot of these young kids have no clue what it takes right now."