Thursday will mark three weeks since the New York Jets reported for training camp. The summer started with Josh McCown atop the QB depth chart followed by Teddy Bridgewater and then rookie Sam Darnold. But with Darnold receiving the majority of reps and the bulk of the workload with the first team for a second consecutive day here in Richmond, Todd Bowles was asked if his QB pecking order had changed.
Stating there had been no movement, Bowles acknowledged the Jets have to get a longer look at Darnold with the starters and he could be in line for his first professional start when the Jets battle the Redskins Thursday night at FedExField.
“He's just got to get used to throwing to different guys,” Bowles said of Darnold following the Green & White’s morning workout with the ‘Skins. “When he gets to know the players and know what they can do, I'm sure he'll figure that part out. Josh can help him to a certain degree, but experience can help him even more. Just being out there, getting used to the guys and the receivers — that's what we're trying to do with him."
Veteran wide receiver Jermaine Kearse continues to stay in Darnold’s ears and he’s been impressed with the USC product’s work ethic.
"It's just communication. I just have to continue to talk to him after each rep, watch the film with him and everything,” he told reporters today. “He's doing a great job. He's just continuing to learn, he's very composed out there, he works very hard out there.”
Darnold made a pair of terrific throws Tuesday to veteran TE Eric Tomlinson. The first came during a 7-on-7 drill, delivered with great touch and pinpoint ball placement along the sideline in between a pair of defensive backs. Later in the final period of the day, Darnold squeezed the rock through a tight window to Tomlinson over the middle. While the latter came back due to a penalty, the 21-year-old signal caller took it in stride and got his troops right back into the huddle.
"On the side conversations, he may say some stuff that sounds like a rookie. But for the most part, when he's out here, he's just so composed and poised,” Kearse said. “You never see him wide-eyed. If he makes a mistake, it's like learn from it and move on to the next one. That's what I really like seeing from Sam. I've noticed that since the first time he came in from OTAs. He's just steadily getting better each day and he improves each day. His composure is on a vet level."
Versatility at Outside ‘Backer
The Jets have used different combinations at outside linebacker throughout camp. While veterans Jordan Jenkins and Josh Martin were the starting pair last year, the Jets have also taken long looks at Brandon Copeland and Frankie Luvu. Lorenzo Mauldin didn’t make the trip, but David Bass is working his way back into the mix after being out early in camp.
“We don’t have the name guy. We don’t have the Lawrence Taylor so to speak, but we have guys who work hard and are very tough at the point of attack,” Bowles said. “You don’t need a name guy — you just need a guy with production. The production will make the name. Disrupting the quarterback is the big thing as well as setting the edge. We have certain guys who can do a lot of things right now.”
Not Crossing the Line
After a Sunday that featured a pair of skirmishes and one or two scuffles in the stands, the Jets and the Redskins stuck to football throughout their second workout. The Jets addressed the extracurricular stuff before returning to the practice field.
"We wanted to get good work in. We didn't come out here to brawl with anybody or anything like that,” Kearse said. “First practice, things get a little testy and you're still feeling each other. You're trying to figure out how to practice with another team… and not crossing the line. Today was a better day. We talked about it in the team meeting, what we wanted to accomplish and what we wanted to get done. I think we did a really good job of doing that."
Tight end Neal Sterling (ankle), cornerbacks Parry Nickerson (hamstring) and Juston Burris, tight ends Clive Walford and Chris Herndon and T Ben Ijalana were among the non-participants. Quincy Enunwa (hand) was dressed, but did not see action in 7-on-7s or team… Terrelle Pryor made a deft one-handed grab of a Teddy Bridgewater ball that sailed on the passer in 7-on-7… Cornerback Derrick “Bones” Jones intercepted a deflected Colt McCoy ball in team… Leonard Williams is an interior defensive lineman, but the Big Cat has often asked to go against one of the game’s finest lineman in T Trent Williams in pass rush/blocking drills. Life is much different on the outside, but the Cat aspires to excel in all environments… Jonotthan Harrison, who has been the No. 2 guy in at the center position, has played RG with the first team the past two days. Starter Brian Winters was inside getting treatment today and rookie FB Dimitri Flowers got injured at practice. Bowles did know the extent of the injury.