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Monday, August 25, 2014
New York Jets' projected roster

By Rich Cimini

Examining the New York Jets' roster:

QUARTERBACKS (3)
It's official: Smith is the starter. In other news, Joe Namath is cool -- still. Simms is now practice-squad eligible based on the new rules, giving the Jets an added option if they want to carry only two quarterbacks. But exposing him to waivers is risky, especially after a nice performance against the New York Giants, salsa dance excluded.

RUNNING BACKS (5)

Rex Ryan said he'd like to carry four tailbacks. Neither Richardson nor Alex Green has dazzled in the preseason games, but we're giving a slight edge to Richardson based on practice reps and game snaps. Chad Young was released, leaving Bohanon as the only fullback.

WIDE RECEIVERS (6)
Jacoby Ford is out (cut), Hakim is in. Ryan said Hakim is his kickoff returner, adding, "He is one of the fastest guys in this league, and we feel pretty good about him." Sounds like a pretty good endorsement. On the wrong side of the cut line are Clyde Gates and Greg Salas, both of whom are having solid preseasons. Hill probably will make it by default unless they can move him in a trade.

TIGHT ENDS (3)

The story of the past week has been Amaro, who looks like he finally gets it. The second-round pick has a team-high eight catches in the preseason for 79 yards and a touchdown. Cumberland has missed the last two games with an Achilles' tendon injury. He'd best hurry back.

OFFENSIVE LINEMEN (9)

Winter has locked up the left guard job, not that there was much of a doubt. Aboushi is an important reserve because he can play right tackle and both guard spots. Freeman has solidified the backup center job despite having no regular-season experience. Then again, none of the backups do.

DEFENSIVE LINEMEN (5)

Big T.J. Barnes is having a solid camp, but he could get caught in the numbers game. This is a tough unit to crack.

LINEBACKERS (8)

We're dropping rookie IK Enemkpali, who developed a mysterious foot injury that sidelined him last Friday night. He's had a few big moments this summer, but they probably can bring him back on the practice squad. A leg injury hurts Troy Davis' chances.

CORNERBACKS (7)

Enemkpaili's spot will go to Lewis, who was praised by Ryan after Friday night's game. This is hardly a "Who's Who?" at cornerback, but we decided to keep an extra corner in light of the news about Patterson. General manager John Idzik needs to make a bold move to shore up this position.

SAFETIES (4)

We're still counting Allen as a safety even though it's possible he could open the season at corner -- if he opens at all, as now he's dealing with a concussion. Pryor, their No. 1 pick, had a couple of hiccups agains the Giants, but that's to be expected.

SPECIALISTS (3)

Quigley is on the hot seat after a poor game. He's on a good week/bad week trend, not the safest way for a punter to go about his job. It's a musical-chairs position, and he needs a strong finish to the preseason in order to keep his seat.