The production crew is headed down to Mobile, Alabama Sunday. Senior Bowl practices commence Monday and we will be attendance for the majority of the workouts next week. In addition to speaking to some of the top prospects, we will also check-in with Jets personnel as they continue to prepare for the 2013 NFL Draft.
We will post some "On the Inside" videos and blogs while down south, but the Q&A won't return until the following week. Please keep the questions coming in while we are on the road.
Lucas A.Woodbridge, VAQ: I am currently deployed to Afghanistan (USMC) and stayed up for every televised game they showed over here on the Armed Forces Network (AFN). Can you talk to Jets Nation and see what we can do about jazzin' up our uniforms? I would like to incorporate a black or grey uniform for the Sunday or Monday night games.
EA: In accordance to NFL rules, the Jets (and every other team in the league) cannot wear a uniform with a color outside their current scheme. Obviously the Jets colors are green & white and I can assure you the organization loves the classy look.
There will be no new wrinkles in 2013 unless the team decides to wear their throwback Titans jerseys and we won't know that until June. The Jets will continue to have conversations with the league and Nike about the introduction of new historical uniforms (Ex. Kelly Green), but it takes well over a year to get anything like that implemented. If anything is on the horizon, I will keep you updated. Thanks for your service and please stay safe.
The Jets had a Top 10 — even a Top 5 defense — the past four seasons. With Mike Pettine and a lot of other staff out, how do we maintain our great defense?
EA: Pettine shuffled off to Buffalo and took Jimmy O'Neil and Anthony Weaver with him to coach the Bills linebackers and defensive line respectively. And another former Jets defensive coordinator Donnie Henderson will actually mentor the Bills defensive backs. Pettine is a tremendous teacher and he is going to help B-Lo immediately. That was a tremendous hire for former Jets O-line coach Doug Marrone. The Bills will be less vanilla in 2013 and opposing offenses will have to deal with their multiple fronts, exotic blitzes and coverage disguises. Mark it down — the Bills will be better on defense next season and that isn't a great thing for the Jets.
But the Jets defense is in excellent hands. Rex Ryan is a defensive mastermind and Dennis Thurman is more than ready for his shot at coordinator.
"He is a developer of talent, he is guy who can coach the tough player and he can do all those type of things," Ryan said of DT on a recent "Jets Talk LIVE" appearance. "He is about as smart a guy I've been around and understands the game more from a former player perspective and a coach. He is a commanding figure in the meetings room. Everybody respects him."
HansCleveland, NYQ: With all the talent we have on the defensive line, don't you think it would make sense to switch to a 4-3 — especially considering our LB corps?
EA:Don't get caught up on base alignments because you play so much nickel and sub in this passing league anyway. The Jets have two building blocks up front with Muhammad Wilkerson and Quinton Coples and you know David Harris will be back at MLB. If healthy, those three are almost always going to be on the field in 2013. In the middle, Sione Pouha is under contract and the Jets would like Kenrick Ellis to take the next step in year three. The question marks are at linebacker, so we will be in better position to address the front after personnel moves in the spring.
Paul N.Queens, NYQ:If the Jets drop (Bart) Scott and (Calvin) Pace to make (salary) cap room, with limited cash for premier replacements through free agency, does that mean they will start rookie draft picks next season? Scary thought.
EA: If the Jets parted ways with the Scott, then his likely replacement would be Demario Davis. The 6'2", 239-pound Davis, a third-round draft selection from Arkansas State in 2012, got some more base snaps down the stretch as the Madbacker battled a debilitating toe injury. There still is a chance that Scott returns and he has had a tremendous four year-run with the Green & White. He was a leader since day one, helped get this defense up and running and happily accepted the thankless jobs that go unnoticed by many. Nick Bellore is also a reliable backup on the inside, but the outside spots are more blurry if Pace is released.* *Bryan Thomas isn't under contract and he may have played his last game with the Jets.
Jerry K.Clermont, FL
Q: If the Jets lose Keller, Landry and/or Greene in free agency, would they receive draft compensatory picks?
EA:We should have a better idea of that once when free agency concludes. * *Under rules for compensatory draft selections, a team losing more or better compensatory free agent than it acquires in the previous year is eligible to receiver compensatory draft picks. Compensatory free agents are determined by a formula based on salary, playing time and postseason honors
Patti K.Scotch Plains, NJ
Q: Is it a definite Tebow will no longer be a Jet next season?
EA: No. Tebow is under contract. Once the new GM and new offensive coordinator are in place, I think you will know whether No. 15 is in the Jets' plans.
The Crazy HungarianChicago, IL (Reside in Madison, WI)
Q: Can Sanchez be fixed? Or is it too late? What do you think about a trade for Brock Osweiler(Denver) for Kyle Wilson and a late round draft pick. Or do we go the route of Mike Vick, Matt Flynn or Alex Smith?
EA: Sanchez has a place in the NFL and he can still grow as a player, but turnovers and accuracy problems have plagued No. 6 throughout his career. There may be some offensive coordinator candidates who think they can get the best out of him and there are probably a few who think the Jets would be better served if they moved on. Remember Sanchez is set to reportedly earn a guaranteed $8.25 million in 2013 and this cap number would be ever bigger if released. The Broncos aren't trading Osweiler — he is Peyton Manning's heir apparent. Vick is still property of the Eagles, but he would be interesting if Rex Ryan hired Marty Mornhinweg as his OC. Not a young buck anymore, Vick will turn 33 in June and he also was plagued by turnover issues this past season. Still an elite athlete, Vick absorbs vicious shots and he was limited to just 10 games in 2012. If Smith becomes available via trade or on the open market, he won't wow you. But he is efficient and he will protect the football. Flynn is under contract with the Seahawks and is reportedly scheduled to make $5.3 million in 2013. A timing passer, you don't really know what Flynn is yet because he has started two games in the NFL. There is no shame to losing out to Russell Wilson in a competition.
Aaron S.Huntsville, ALQ: I know it is a little early to be looking at the draft considering the question marks at GM and OC still remaining, but who are your most interesting prospects at the skill positions QB, RB, WR that could be on the Jets radar?
EA:Great question! I will have a better handle on this one once we return from your home state. Does anyone have any Mobile dinner recommendations?