Darrelle Revis makes the tackle against Nebraska
On this final day of training camp, Darrelle Revis was one of the last players off the field. The rookie cornerback from Pittsburgh who ended his lengthy holdout last week participated in just five camp practices.
"I think I can pick up things quickly. When you are out here practicing, it's just getting the reps so you can visualize it and see it," Revis told reporters this afternoon. "That's what I try to do when I come out to practice is visualize and see it. Once you are in something, in a situation, you can handle it."
Laveranues Coles, the Jets' MVP last season, sure thinks Revis can handle the transition to the NFL. When asked what he looks for when he lines up against any rookie corner, LC talked generalities before shifting his focus to the Aliquippa, Pa., native.
"The look in his eyes, to see if he's scared or he's intimidated because I'm standing in front of him, first of all," Coles said. "Also, just his stance. Is he going to stand in there or is he going to be soft when the ball is snapped? You try to look for all those little things.
"And if you're talking about our young guy that we have in, he has all the great qualities of being a great corner in this league. Darrelle came in and I just watched him work. I don't really say much to him, but I think he's someone who's going to really and truly help this ballclub. And if he continues to work hard, because I can tell you he's a guy that truly cares about football and being good, he'll probably be one of the better corners in this league real soon, sooner than later, trust me."
Revis has moved around the formation the past four days. With Andre Dyson not taking part in team drills the past couple of practices, he has even received some reps with the first string at LCB. Revis also has played a new position, manning the slot as the nickel corner.
"When you are outside, you can see everything. When you are at corner, you can see outside in," he said Tuesday. "And then when you are inside out at the nickel, dime, it is tougher. You have to look at what the No. 1 receiver is doing out there and you have to look at the offensive line to see what kind of blocks they're doing. Yeah, it's just a different aspect."
"He's learning both spots. He worked both spots since he's been here," said head coach Eric Mangini. "That'll be the case moving forward. Really, a lot of those DBs have worked inside as well. Yesterday there were some things I really liked and there were some things where you recognize that he missed that element of the teaching."
When the Jets selected Revis at No. 14 overall, they liked not only his obvious physical abilities but his mental prowess. Away from the Jets for the first several weeks this summer, Revis found time to study on his own. The wait was agonizing, but he worked diligently nonetheless.
"What I was pleased with is in talking to him and assessing his recall, he did a good job with the notes he had taken and things we had covered during the OTAs," Mangini said. "He obviously had spent some time not just working out but working on the information that he left with, and that's good."
A good student of the game, Revis keeps a loaded notebook.
"Coach always tells us to write down stuff because you are probably going to forget it and that's what I do," he said. "I write down everything to make sure I'm doing the right thing all the time. This is a new thing to me, being in the NFL, so I want to take advantage of everything."
In less than a week, Revis has been impressed by his fellow players' intelligence and the speed of the game. But as he gets more comfortable with the system and the playbook, the game is slowing down. And Revis is fast.
On Saturday night, he'll get a taste of NFL game action for the first time when the Jets "visit" the Giants.
"I dreamed of being in the NFL. It's something I always worked hard for, but once you are here it feels kind of funny because you always look at the NFL logo and you are like 'I'm in the NFL,' " he said. "It's kind of crazy, but after you get comfortable with it, it's just football."