Friday, May 16, 2014
W2W4: Pryor, Amaro & Co. debut Friday
By Rich Cimini
The New York Jets' largest draft class since 1998 will participate in a three-day rookie camp, starting Friday. Only the first two days are open to the media. No portion is open to the public. What we might see from the Idzik 12:
1. The Louisville Slugger: First-round pick Calvin Pryor won't generate as much rookie-camp buzz as Geno Smith did last year, but that's because he's a safety, not a quarterback. Because he's a safety known for his physical style of play, Pryor probably won't get a chance to show everyone why they called him the "Louisville Slugger" in college. After all, it's a non-contact camp. Nevertheless, it'll be interesting to see his movement skills and how well he responds in pass coverage. That wasn't his forte in college.
2. The catcher: By the nature of his position and college résumé, second-round pick Jace Amaro, a record-setting tight end at Texas Tech, will draw the most attention in camp. He put up video-game numbers in the Big 12, which plays no defense, so it'll be fascinating to see if he's the real deal. There will be a learning curve, as he attempts to get acclimated in a pro-style offense. The matchup everyone wants to see, of course, is Amaro vs. Pryor in a one-on-one coverage drill.
3. A mini-Senior Bowl: The Jets devoted nearly half their 12-player draft to wide receivers and cornerbacks -- three receivers (Jalen Saunders, Shaq Evans and Quincy Enunwa) and two corners (Dexter McDougle and Brandon Dixon). There will be ample head-to-head opportunities, turning rookie camp into scaled-down version of an all-star game. It'll be ideal for evaluation purposes. McDougle, who underwent shoulder surgery last September and missed the season, could be limited.
4. The Tajh Show: Quarterback Tajh Boyd was surprised he lasted until the sixth round; he felt he was a first-round talent. Well, now he gets a chance to prove the skeptics wrong. It won't happen in one weekend, as this will mark the start of a long, arduous process, but you know what they say about first impressions. The former Clemson star has a lot of work ahead of him, learning a pro-style offense and cleaning up mechanical flaws in his delivery.
5. Big Mac: This will be the media's first chance to see new special teams coordinator Thomas McGaughey, who replaces Ben Kotwica.