After exiting Monday’s practice with a foot injury, Jets wide receiver Jamison Crowder returned to the field Wednesday and didn’t skip a beat.
“It was something that needed to get checked out. I was good, though,” Crowder said of his foot. “It was good to be back out there today and I feel great.”
With the offense down 24-20 and 1:30 remaining in a team period, the 5’9”, 177-pound wideout found the end zone on fourth down. Quarterback Sam Darnold rolled out to his right and fired the ball to the front pylon where Crowder reeled in the pass for the score. Crowder almost had six on the same route the previous play but was marked out at the 1-yard line.
“That was a great throw,” he said of the touchdown pass. “I thought I got in the first time, but I guess it was just bad awareness on my part. We got in the next play. He (Darnold) can spin the football. We just executed well and I was just happy we were able to score on the defense.”
After roughly one week of camp, the fifth-year veteran has quickly developed an on-field rapport with Darnold and has emerged as one of his favorite targets.
“I just want to be a weapon, somebody that’s reliable, somebody that’s consistent,” Crowder said. “I just want to gain trust from him that when he wants to go my way, he has that trust and that confidence that I’m going to make a play.”
So far, so good. Darnold has turned to No. 82 a number of times in the short, intermediate and deep passing game and recently had high praise for his new playmaker.
“He's so quick. Everyone knows how quick he is, but he's fast too,” the second-year signal-caller said. “I think he can hit another gear, too. He's got game speed, especially when someone gets the better of him. If someone maybe predicts what route he's going to run and they maybe beat him to the spot on one play, the next play you know he's just going to come out firing. That's just kind of who he is. He's a competitor and it's good to see that.”
Coming off a season that was cut short because of an ankle injury, Crowder has regained his top form in head coach Adam Gase’s attack-style offense, and feels like he can play a “solid” role in the system. In fact, the success slot receivers have had in Gase’s scheme is one of the reasons the 26-year-old signed with the Green & White in the offseason.
So, what’s next for Darnold, Crowder and the rest of the offense as the first preseason game approaches?
“When Sam is on his game, and the offensive line and receivers and the backs (are on their games), we can be really good,” he said. “I just think, now, the next step for us is being consistent and continuing to stack these days with good work.”