Read & React: Jets Preseason Observations

(Pic: USA TODAY)

NFL Insider Ric Serritella weighs in with his New York Jets training camp observations following their second preseason game against the Washington Redskins.

The Mike Maccagnan & Todd Bowles Era enters year four with just 20 wins under their belt for the New York Jets, including just five victories in each of the past two seasons. While the organization traded up to select new franchise quarterback Sam Darnold with the third overall pick, there is pressure to produce better bottom line results.

It’s fair to say that Darnold has exceeded expectations through the first two preseason games and it appears that he may be the right man to open the season as the Jets starter. However, the best move for this organization long-term is to showcase quarterback Teddy Bridgewater, who has looked impressive in his own right during camp.

Every year, it seems that a starting quarterback goes down for the season due to injury, leaving that NFL team to scramble for a capable replacement. Bridgewater could be the Jets’ golden ticket, which is why he should start the third preseason game and run with the ones, in order to help maximize his trade value.

(Pic: Newsday)

With 39-year old veteran Josh McCown still in tow as an insurance policy should Darnold falter or sustain injury, team brass must make a decision that’s in the best overall interest of the organization. Seriously, the Jacksonville Jaguars should have Maccagnan on speed dial!

As for Darnold, he looked sharp against Washington, making the correct reads and taking what the defense was giving him. If his performance versus the Redskins was any indication of how he’ll perform, New York just might have finally found the right man to end the near 50-year Super Bowl drought.

Another position battle that’ll be interesting to watch is at running back, where ‘ol reliable Bilal Powell has been his usual productive, between the tackles runner, while offseason acquisition Isaiah Crowell has nursed a concussion. Powell drew the start versus Washington and had a pair of catches, reminding us why he has caught 80 balls over the past two seasons, in addition to rushing for 1,500 yards, despite starting just 14 games during that span. Bowles is familiar with Powell and could favor him to begin the season as starter.

On the defensive side of the ball, linebacker Neville Hewitt has been applying some pressure on Darron Lee for his starting inside linebacker position. Hewitt has shined throughout training camp and led the team with eight tackles for the second consecutive preseason game. He has shown active hands, batting down balls in practice and games—he also had an interception against Atlanta. Hewitt is playing so well, it’ll be hard to keep the former back-to-back MAC Defensive Player of the Year off the field.

 

*Stay tuned for more preseason updates as we count you down to the 2018 NFL kickoff!

@ricserritella | @nfldraftbible

Rick Serritella

Established in 2002, NFL Draft Bible Founder Ric Serritella began his independent scouting service as a publication used by all 32 NFL teams. Eventually, it would evolve into an online scouting resource that reaches millions of people each month. An early adaptor to technology, the NFL Draft Bible produced the first ever livestream video show and live podcast on location from the NFL Draft. The NFL Draft Bible network extends to professional football leagues all over the world and includes general managers, executives, scouts, coaches, agents, trainers, advisors, along with other media outlets and draftniks. In addition to owning the NFL Draft Bible, Serritella has also served as executive producer of the T.Ocho Show (2010) on NBC Sports, producer for The Mike & The Mad Dog Show (2002) on YES Network, producer for NFL Now with Mike Francesa, one of the only nationally syndicated NFL shows at that time (2003), producer on ESPN Hollywoood (2005) and helped start up the Wall Street Journal YouTube channel (2007). He has interviewed the likes of Donald Trump, Roger Goodell, Archie Manning, Shaquille O'Neal, Allen Iverson, Danica Patrick, Venus Williams, Howard Stern, Don King, Jay-Z, Madonna, Bon Jovi and hundreds of other celebrities/athletes. Other involvements include helping build the fiber-optic system for MLB Network during his time as manager at HTN Communications, writing for USA TODAY, working for CBS and AEG Live. Since 2015, he has served as the Director of Media for the Parabolic Performance NFL Draft Prep program. In 2017, Serritella served as the Director of Player Personnel for the College Gridiron Showcase & Symposium. A graduate of Johnson & Wales University (JWU) in Providence, RI, Serritella earned a B.A. in Sports Entertainment & Event Management and was honored with the Inaugural Sports Entertainment & Event Management Success Board Achievement Award by the school in 2009. While attending JWU, he interned for the New England Patriots and ESPN X-Games. A proud member of the Pro Football Writers of America and the Football Writers Association of America, Serritella currently resides in his home state of New Jersey.

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