AFC East: Kyle Wilson

Jets draft preview: Secondary

May, 7, 2014
This is the ninth and final installment in a position-by-position analysis of the New York Jets as they prepare for the draft:

Position: Secondary

Current personnel: CB Dee Milliner (signed through 2016), CB Dimitri Patterson (2014), CB Kyle Wilson (2014), S Dawan Landry (2014), S Antonio Allen (2015), CB Darrin Walls (2014), S Jaiquawn Jarrett (2014), CB Ellis Lankster (2014), CB Ras-I Dowling (2015), CB Johnny Patrick (2014), S Josh Bush (2015), S Rontez Miles (2016), CB Nick Taylor (2015), CB Lowell Rose (2016), CB Jeremy Reeves (2016), S Brandon Hardin (2014).

Projected starters: Milliner, Patterson, Landry, Allen.

Newcomers: Patterson (free agent/Miami Dolphins), Patrick (waivers/San Diego Chargers), Reeves (college free agent).

Departures: Antonio Cromartie (cut/Arizona Cardinals), Ed Reed (free agent), Isaiah Trufant (free agent/Cleveland Browns).

Top salary-cap charge: Milliner, $2.88 million.

Scouting report: The secondary needs help. The Jets allowed 15 pass plays of 40-plus yards, the fourth-highest total in the league. They surrendered 3,947 passing yards, the most by the franchise since 1986. A broken-down Reed made three interceptions in seven games -- and that was good enough to tie for the team lead. Need we go on? In free agency, they made only one significant move, essentially replacing Cromartie with Patterson. When healthy, Patterson is a playmaker, especially in the slot, but he hasn't been healthy in recent years. Cromartie played poorly last season, so maybe they figure anything they get out of Patterson is an upgrade. That's a risky way to do business. Rex Ryan needs at least three good corners to play his style of defense, and there are no sure things on the roster. Milliner capped an otherwise bad rookie season with a strong finish, but does that make him a legit No. 1 corner? If Milliner doesn't make a big leap, it's trouble.

Last DB drafted: They picked Milliner, ninth overall, last year.

Potential targets: There's a decent chance they could pick a corner in the first round (18). No fewer than seven corners made pre-draft visits to the Jets' facility, including the top four -- Darqueze Dennard (Michigan State), Justin Gilbert (Oklahoma State), Kyle Fuller (Virginia Tech) and Bradley Roby (Ohio State). Dennard is the best scheme fit because he played a lot of man-to-man in college. Gilbert is a freakishly talented athlete with terrific ball skills, but he's not physical -- a younger version of Cromartie. Fuller can play in any scheme. Roby has "boom or bust" written all over him. Dennard, Gilbert and Fuller would be good value at 18. Keith McGill (Utah) is a possibility if they want to wait until the second or third round. Dex Mcdougle (Maryland) is a third-day option. The could use a cover safety, but Ha Ha Clinton-Dix (Alabama) won't last until 18. Ryan's defense doesn't value safeties as much as other teams, so it wouldn't be a surprise if they wait until Day 3 to draft one, if then. Dez Southward (Wisconsin) is a late possibility.

Need rating (scale of 1 to 10): CB -- 10; S -- 7.

Wilson cagey about swapping No. 20

November, 14, 2013
FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- Ed Reed has played a Hall of Fame career with a No. 20 jersey. Now that he’s a Jet, he showed up wearing No. 22. The No. 20 Jets jersey has been worn by cornerback Kyle Wilson since he was drafted in 2010 in the first round with the 29th overall pick.

Numbers mean a lot, they can be lucky, or signify a something larger for a player. Changing numbers may be considered bad luck, or merely annoying when every photo of your professional career is accompanied by a 20.

There’s a protocol at times like this. Usually it means that the veteran offers money and/or consideration to the younger player in exchange for the number.

But on Thursday, when Wilson was asked whether he had been approached by Reed for his number, the corner turned serious.

“Nah, I’m not trying to talk about that with you guys.” Wilson said.

Is a swap off the table?

“Not going to discuss that with you guys,” Wilson said.

Will we see on Sunday?

“I’m here for Buffalo,” Wilson said.

So there you have it. Maybe the 20 means something to Wilson, maybe Reed doesn’t want it, or maybe Wilson’s comments are just a starting point in the negotiations.
FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- Cornerback Kyle Wilson suffered a concussion in last Sunday's loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers, the New York Jets confirmed, and he didn't practice Wednesday. His status for Sunday against the New England Patriots remains uncertain.

The Jets could lose a defensive back this week, but gain one. Rookie cornerback Dee Milliner, out the last three games with a pulled hamstring, practiced on a limited basis and is expected to play. Asked if he's optimistic about Milliner's chances of returning, Rex Ryan said, "Yeah, I am. Absolutely."

Milliner doesn't play the slot, so it would be interesting to see how they use him, Antonio Cromartie and Darrin Walls. They could move Walls into the slot or perhaps go with Isaiah Trufant, who replaced Wilson against the Steelers. Milliner didn't fare well in the previous meeting against the Patriots, as he was benched at halftime.

There was a curious development with newly-signed wide recover Greg Salas, whom they plucked off the Philadelphia Eagles' practice squad. Salas, who didn't practice, had a pre-existing knee injury that will sideline him for at least two weeks, according to Ryan. The coach claimed they knew about the injury.

"We kind of knew he was going to be out," Ryan said. "If he had a severe injury, that wasn't the case. This might be a couple of weeks and he'll be back."
FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- The New York Jets likely will be facing the New England Patriots with a beat-up receiving corps.

Santonio Holmes (hamstring) didn't practice Wednesday, David Nelson (undisclosed) was limited in positional drills and newcomer Greg Salas, signed Tuesday off the Philadelphia Eagles' practice squad, spent the early part of practice riding a stationary bike. Unless Salas was injured on the drive up the New Jersey Turnpike, it appears the Jets signed damaged goods.

The Jets' other newcomer, WR/KR Josh Cribbs, made his debut on the practice field, wearing No. 16. As expected, he was involved in punt and kickoff returning, and he also ran drills with the receivers.

Holmes showed up midway through the media period at practice -- he walked in with general manager John Idzik -- but he wasn't in pads and did only light jogging. There's little chance he will play Sunday. On Tuesday, they lost Clyde Gates (shoulder) for the season, placing him on injured reserve.

Cornerback Kyle Wilson (head injury) also is a question mark. He, too, was on the bikes.

On the positive side, rookie cornerback Dee Milliner (hamstring) participated in positional drills, working his way back to action. There's growing optimism about his chances of playing Sunday. He has missed three straight games.

Injury roundup: Two RBs banged up

October, 13, 2013
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- The New York Jets had several players go down with injuries against the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday, including two of their top three running backs.

Starter Bilal Powell and Mike Goodson exited the game -- Powell with a shoulder injury, Goodson with a knee injury. Coach Rex Ryan did not have updates on any of his injured players after the game.

Powell did speak to reporters, and insisted he is not injured. "I just took a little hit, came out and took a breather," Powell said. "Came in and everything is good."

Goodson may be out for a while -- he had to be helped off the field after going down in the fourth quarter. UPDATE: Goodson is scheduled to have an MRI on Monday for the potentially serious knee injury, according to a source.

Wide receiver Clyde Gates, who had a team-high five catches for 36 yards, injured his shoulder and had his arm in a sling after the game.

Cornerback Kyle Wilson left with a head injury, and may have a concussion.

Wide receiver Stephen Hill took a big shot from Steelers safety Troy Polamalu late in the first half, but played in the second half.

"I just got the wind knocked out of me," Hill said afterward.

Locker Room Buzz: New York Jets

October, 13, 2013
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Observed in the locker room after the New York Jets' 19-6 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers at MetLife Stadium:

No consistency: Rex Ryan and several players lamented the team's lack of consistency on a week-to-week basis. In fact, the Jets (3-3) have managed only one two-game winning streak over the last 25 games -- and that occurred last season. "It sucks, man," linebacker Calvin Pace said. "We talk about how we want to be a playoff team, but to be a playoff team, you have to win more than one game [in a row]. If you win one, lose one, you're 8-8. We have to be better than that." Sitting a few feet away, the usually affable Sheldon Richardson refused to speak to the media. "It's called being mad as hell, and I don't want to talk to y'all," the rookie defensive tackle said.

Walking wounded: The Jets suffered four injuries -- CB Kyle Wilson (possible concussion), RB Mike Goodson (knee), WR Clyde Gates (shoulder) and RB Bilal Powell (shoulder), who insisted he was fine. That wasn't the case with Gates, who was seen in the locker room with his left arm in a sling. The Jets already are down a receiver, with Santonio Holmes (hamstring) likely to miss next Sunday's game against the New England Patriots. Losing Gates would hurt. Obviously, the backfield would take a hit without Powell and Goodson, whose injury could be serious.

Contradicting alibis: Geno Smith said his first interception, near the Steelers' goal line, was an intentional throwaway. Ryan gave a different version, saying he "would've liked to have seen him throw the ball away there and not force it." Looking at the replay, it sure looked like a forced throw into triple coverage. Graybeard S Ryan Clark read it perfectly and made the interception at the 1-yard line in the third quarter, ending Smith's streak of eight straight quarters without an interception.

Upon Further Review: Jets Week 4

September, 30, 2013
Four hot issues that emerged from the New York Jets' 38-13 loss to the Tennessee Titans:

[+] EnlargeSmith
AP Photo/Mark ZaleskiDespite their 2-2 record, the Jets and quarterback Geno Smith are performing unevenly.
Who are these guys? The Jets finished the first quarter of the season at 2-2, demonstrating many of the qualities we expected from this group -- a defense-minded team with a mistake-prone rookie at quarterback. For the most part, they’ve been terrific on defense, especially at the line of scrimmage. Other times, such as Sunday in Nashville, they’ve suffered from shaky coverage on the back end. Offensively, they’ve been what we expected for 12 out of 16 quarters -- a struggling unit. They were prolific against the Buffalo Bills, but was that a mirage? Sure looks like it. The lack of discipline (44 penalties) is uncharacteristic and alarming.

Help the kid: Smith will remain the starter for the time being, so it’s up to offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg to figure out a way to help him. On Sunday, he should’ve leaned more on the running game instead airing it out. Bilal Powell averaged 5.7 yards per carry in the first half, gashing the Titans on some first-down runs, but he carried it only three times in the third quarter, when it still was a game. Look, I’m not going to rip Mornhinweg for being aggressive -- a week ago, he was hailed for his attacking mentality -- but he should dial it back a little when Smith slips into one of his funks. He already has eight interceptions, a season’s worth for some quarterbacks. It makes sense to feature the run against the Atlanta Falcons, considering wide receivers Santonio Holmes (hamstring) and Stephen Hill (concussion) are banged up and running back Mike Goodson is returning from a four-game suspension.

Cornerback issues: For three-plus years, Rex Ryan enjoyed the benefit of having two excellent cornerbacks, Darrelle Revis and Antonio Cromartie. He never had to worry about bad matchups on the outside. Now that Revis is gone, Ryan is experiencing what most coaches go through. Darrin Walls became the third player to start at right corner, following Dee Milliner and Kyle Wilson. The once-formidable secondary doesn’t scare anyone anymore. The run-oriented Titans compiled a 129.8 passer rating, beating Cromartie twice for touchdowns and Walls once. I’m not second-guessing the Revis trade, but you can certainly criticize the Jets’ post-Revis plan, as Milliner was struggling before he got hurt.

Self-inflicted wounds: The numbers are damning -- 12 giveaways and 44 penalties. Let’s simplify: That’s 56 bad things in four games. If you throw in the 14 sacks allowed, it’s 70 bad things. It’s hard to win football games at that rate. That they have only two takeaways, meaning a minus-10 turnover margin, compounds the issue. It has to get better or else the Jets will be out of the race by Halloween, especially with a tough October schedule. Ryan’s team is leaking oil in a lot of places, and it’s too late for a full-service oil change.

Bad defensive day turns into slapstick

September, 29, 2013
NASHVILLE -- Can we please postpone the coronation of the New York Jets' defense?

Full of confidence after last week's eight-sack beat down of the Buffalo Bills, the Jets were sliced and diced by Jake Locker and Ryan Fitzpatrick, who combined for four touchdown passes in the Tennessee Titans' 38-13 victory at LP Field.

The final indignity occurred with 7:06 remaining in the fourth quarter, when cornerback Antonio Cromartie, Nate Washington and back judge Billy Smith collided on a 77-yard touchdown pass -- another Jets blooper.

Cromartie said he asked the official, "What the hell are you doing back here?" He said Smith apologized.

[+] EnlargeTennessee's Nate Washington
P Photo/Wade PayneJets cornerback Antonio Cromartie, back judge Billy Smith and Titans receiver Nate Washington collide. The result was a 77-yard score for Washington.
That pretty much captured the disastrous day for the Jets.

Truth is, Cromartie was beaten cleanly by Washington, who had to slow down because Fitzpatrick's throw hung in the air like a punt. Once Washington made the catch, the collision occurred with Cromartie and Smith.

"No, he didn't interfere with the play," Cromartie said. "That's on me fully. Me being the number one corner on this team, I need to make sure that I go up and intercept that ball or bat it down."

It was a tough day for the Jets' corners. Earlier, Cromartie slipped on the wet grass and allowed a 4-yard scoring pass to Washington. Darrin Walls, who started in the Dee Milliner-Kyle Wilson slot, allowed a 16-yard touchdown pass to rookie receiver Justin Hunter. It was a terrific catch by Hunter, but Walls could've played it better. The Titans use Hunter almost exclusively in the red zone, so it shouldn't have been a surprise that he got the ball -- especially in the final seconds of the first half.

"That's a killer," Rex Ryan said. "There's only one play they can run and that's the shot in the end zone. You know it's coming and everybody in the ballpark knows it's coming. The only time they put that kid in the game is to throw the jump ball, and there's a reason he came down with it."

The cornerback spot opposite Cromartie has turned into musical chairs. Walls started for Kyle Wilson, who last week started for Milliner, the struggling rookie who pulled a hamstring in practice. Ryan is running out of competent corners and, frankly, Cromartie was off his game as well.

Give credit to the Titans; they had a masterful game plan. Recognizing the Jets were focusing on running back Chris Johnson, the Titans put the ball in Locker's hands, letting him throw from the pocket. That's what the Jets wanted, but they got more than they expected from Locker, who completed 18 of 24 passes for 149 yards and three touchdowns. The Jets underestimated Locker, not known for his passing exploits.

"Maybe that's why it surprised us," rookie defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson said.

The Jets were held to two sacks and produced no takeaways for the third straight game. That's simply not acceptable. By the way, the Titans have yet to commit a turnover. In fairness to the defense, it had to play on a short field throughout the game because of Geno Smith's turnovers. The Titans' first three touchdown drives were 18, 26 and 46 yards.

No matter. Linebacker David Harris was visibly irked by the performance.

"Just say we lost," he said. "We got our butts kicked by a better team today. Simple as that."

Asked if the Titans might simply be a better team, Harris snapped, "We lost. Did you see the score?"
NASHVILLE -- As expected, rookie cornerback Dee Milliner and running back Chris Ivory -- both with injured hamstrings -- were among the New York Jets' inactive players Sunday against the Tennessee Titans.

The Jets announced before the game that Darrin Walls will start at cornerback, opposite Antonio Cromartie. This doesn't come as a huge surprise, but it doesn't reflect well on Kyle Wilson, who started last week for the demoted Milliner. Wilson might have lost the job because of his ill-timed implosion in the fourth quarter, when he lost his poise and committed a penalty on four straight plays.

Wilson is expected to play in the nickel package.

Without Ivory, the Jets went into the game with only three running backs -- Bilal Powell, Alex Green and rookie fullback Tommy Bohanon, who is capable of playing tailback in a pinch. The team didn't immediately announce who will replace Milliner, who was used as a nickel back last week after being demoted in the previous game.

The Jets' other inactives are quarterback Brady Quinn, guard Will Campbell, tackle Oday Aboushi, tackle Ben Ijalana and linebacker Ricky Sapp.

For the Titans, receiver Kenny Britt, the former Rutgers standout, is inactive. He's suffering from a rib injury. He also has fallen out of favor with the coaching staff and, according to ESPN Insider Adam Schefter, is on the trading block.

The Titans' other inactives are former Jets running back Shonn Greene, linebacker Patrick Bailey, center Brian Schwenke, tackle Byron Stingily, defensive tackle Sammie Hill and defensive end Lavar Edwards.

Green Day: Jets coping with injuries

September, 27, 2013
FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- Barring a minor miracle, cornerback Dee Milliner and running back Chris Ivory -- both dealing with hamstring injuries -- won't play Sunday against the Tennessee Titans. Time to analyze the contingency plans.

The Jets could wind up dressing only three running backs -- Bilal Powell, Alex Green and rookie fullback Tommy Bohanon. That sounds like a dangerously low number, but they believe Bohanon is capable of playing tailback in a pinch. They can also use third-string tight end Konrad Reuland as a fullback; he lined up in the backfield at times last season, when he was deployed as an H-back.

They will get some help next week, when Mike Goodson returns from his suspension. The Ivory situation has to be frustrating for the Jets, but his durability issues weren't a secret. That was the knock on him with the New Orleans; the Jets knew exactly what they were getting. Sure, he has talent, but talent doesn't help the team from the trainer's room.

At cornerback, Rex Ryan hinted that he'd like start Darrin Walls in the base defense, with Kyle Wilson playing in nickel situations. Wilson will play a lot because the Titans will be in a three-receiver package for most of the game.

Ryan bristled when it was suggested that Milliner, who missed half the preseason with an Achilles' injury, is prone to injuries. Also remember, he missed the offseason recovering from shoulder surgery.

"How many games did he miss in college?" Ryan asked. "Yeah, exactly, I think it was one game."

But Milliner also underwent surgery five times in college. Obviously, the Jets weren't concerned because they drafted him ninth overall, paying him a fully guaranteed $12.6 million. Still, I recall what one longtime NFL coach told me the first time he met Milliner. He was stunned by the rookie's relatively slight frame, wondering how he'd handle the wear and tear of the NFL.

Maybe we're starting to find out.

ICYMI: You have to like Powell's story. Once considered an afterthought in the backfield, he has emerged as the workhorse back. ... Defensive coordinator Dennis Thurman offered some advice to Wilson on how to handle situations like the one that came up last Sunday with Buffalo Bills wide receiver Stevie Johnson: If you seek revenge, the football gods shall provide you with that chance.

Thurman to Wilson: Revenge will come

September, 26, 2013
FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- New York Jets defensive coordinator Dennis Thurman offered a piece of advice to cornerback Kyle Wilson, who was slapped with four consecutive penalties last Sunday because he let a wide receiver get into his head:

Don't get mad, get even.

"The football gods will allow you to get even with a guy, especially if he's wronged," Thurman said Thursday. "It may not happen in that game, it may not happen the next time you play him. But as some point along the line, you'll get a chance -- with a fair, clean hit -- you'll get an opportunity to get him back. You have to wait and be patient.

"Trust me, when guys have been wronged on the football field by someone ... ask anyone if they got a chance to get revenge. They'll tell you yes. It happens that way. That's the way it's supposed to happen."

This stems from a wild sequence in the fourth quarter of the Jets' win against the Buffalo Bills, when Wilson was flagged on four straight plays. He got into it with Stevie Johnson and came unraveled with an embarrassing display of behavior. Wilson apparently felt he was wronged by Johnson, complaining to an official about Johnson's tactics. That didn't help.

Wilson was penalized for holding (Johnson), illegal contact (Johnson), unsportsmanlike conduct (he shoved Bills center Eric Wood) and a personal foul for unnecessary roughness (Johnson). Johnson was called for taunting after the first penalty. Wilson was pulled from the game, but returned on the next series.

"It happens, it's not that big a deal," Thurman said. "It's a teaching moment."

But Thurman didn't disagree with the premise that Wilson, in his fourth season, should know better. His loss of poise allowed the Bills to score a game-tying touchdown. Wilson was penalized more times in 28 seconds than most players get flagged in a season.

Wilson has avoided this media this week during interview periods. His meltdown could have an impact on his playing time. Wilson started last week for demoted rookie Dee Milliner, but he probably won't start Sunday against the Tennessee Titans. That assignment probably will go to Darrin Walls, with Wilson playing the nickel, according to Rex Ryan.

Ryan probably will be forced to shuffle his lineup because Milliner injured a hamstring Wednesday in practice and isn't expected to play.

We'll find out Nov. 17 if the football gods are sympathetic to Wilson. That's when they play the Bills again.

Upon Further Review: Jets Week 3

September, 23, 2013
An examination of four hot issues from the New York Jets' 27-20 victory over the Buffalo Bills:

1. Broadway Geno: A week ago in this space, we wondered how Geno Smith would respond to his awful fourth quarter in New England. The answer: The way the Jets had hoped. He became the first rookie in Jets history to pass for 300 yards and two touchdowns in a game. Not even Joe Namath did that in 1965, when the AFL was a wide-open passing league. In some ways, Smith's performance was Namath-esque, because he threw a couple of interceptions (that makes a total of six). But he also demonstrated the ability to attack downfield, as the Jets unleashed a seldom-seen vertical passing game. Smith averaged 11.4 yards per attempt. You can win a lot of football games with that number. He made one big play in crunch time, the 69-yard touchdown strike to Santonio Holmes, and that was enough.

[+] EnlargeMuhammad Wilkerson
Rich Schultz/Getty ImagesMuhammad Wilkerson sacked EJ Manuel twice in Sunday's win over the Bills.
2. Paging Rex, spill on Aisle 3: Rex Ryan has a lot of stuff to clean up. The Jets have committed 34 penalties, including a franchise-record 20 Sunday, and they're minus-six in turnover margin -- but they're off to a 2-1 start. Go figure. Tom Coughlin would love to have these problems at 2-1. Of course, the Jets won't keep winning if these issues persist. Ryan needs to figure out a way to tidy up the mess; expect a heavy emphasis in practice this week on penalty prevention. It was a team breakdown, as the offense was responsible for 11 penalties, the defense nine. The worst offenders were CB Kyle Wilson (four for 49 yards) and G Vladimir Ducasse (four for 35). If it weren't for one declined penalty and one offsetting, the Jets would've tied the league record at 22. Ryan contributed to the meltdown with an ill-advised replay challenge on a potential first-down spot. Note to Ryan: There's only a 40 percent success rate on those type of challenges this season. Ryan had no challenges remaining in the fourth quarter, and he could've used one on a possible fumble by EJ Manuel.

3. Get the quarterback: Essentially, that was Ryan's message to the team in the Saturday night meeting. The defense heeded his message, recording eight sacks. The last time the Jets made eight sacks in a game was 1988, when the quarterback was Matt Simms' dad, Phil. Fortunately, Matt wasn't around to see that beatdown; it was three months before he was born. The Jets haven't been a big sack team under Ryan, who usually has to manufacture pressure with clever schemes, but the trend is turning. With Muhammad Wilkerson, Quinton Coples and Sheldon Richardson rushing the passer -- first-round picks from 2011 to 2013 -- Ryan has the horses up front to frighten quarterbacks. Manuel, who came into the game with a growing reputation for being calm under pressure, was hit 16 times and rattled by the pressure. Wilkerson recorded the first multisack game of his career.

4. From third-string to lifesaver: Before training camp, Bilal Powell was projected as the No. 3 running back, behind Chris Ivory and Mike Goodson. It changed quickly when Ivory hurt his hamstring and Goodson didn't show because of off-the-field issues. Powell ran with the opportunity, won the starting job and saved the Jets Sunday with a career day -- 149 rushing yards, including 109 in the second half. His day began on the bench, as Ivory got the start. He lasted only four plays before he injured his "good" hamstring, setting it up for Powell. He's the most underrated player on the team, a steady, if not flashy runner who grinds out the yards. With Ivory likely to miss time, Powell will be a very important player over the next few weeks.
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. –- The New York Jets were penalized a franchise-record 20 times.

And cornerback Kyle Wilson was actually benched for a drive after a meltdown of penalties. He was flagged on four consecutive snaps (one was wiped away by an offsetting penalty). Overall, Wilson was flagged four times for a total of 49 yards in the game -- not including the one nullified by an offsetting penalty.

“I’m not going to comment on the officiating,” Wilson said afterward.

Wilson’s first penalty came in the third quarter when he was flagged for defensive pass interference on a first-and-10 at the Buffalo 48 when EJ Manuel attempted a pass for T.J. Graham. The penalty cost the Jets 24 yards.

On the second drive of the fourth quarter, Wilson could not stop committing penalties as Bills’ wideout Stevie Johnson started jawing with him and got to Wilson.

On a third-and-6 at the Bills’ 24, Manuel threw a pass for Johnson. Wilson was called for defensive holding but Johnson drew a taunting penalty for getting in Wilson’s face.

“He’s a Jets player, I’m a Bills player,” Johnson explained. “It’s that bad blood. They walk around like they are bigger than us and we are not going to have that. We were just playing football. It was nothing personal.”

Due to the offsetting penalties, the Bills had another third-and-6 and this time Wilson was flagged for illegal contact as Manuel threw to Johnson again. On the ensuing first down at the Bills’ 29, Wilson was flagged for a personal foul for five yards. Sheldon Richardson also was flagged for illegal use of hands but that penalty was declined. On the next first-and-10 from the Bills’ 34, Manuel completed a pass for 14 yards to Johnson. Wilson tackled Johnson but gave the Bills receiver an extra shove that drew a 15-yard personal foul.

Jets coach Rex Ryan had seen enough.

“Heat of battle, some things happen,” Ryan said. “We needed to get him out of there, sit back, think about it, calm down and that’s exactly what we did.”

The Bills would end up scoring a touchdown on that drive to tie the game at 20-all with 10:39 remaining.

“Every player just [said] a corner has to have a short memory,” Wilson said of what teammates told him. “I have to take a look at the film and see what I can do better.”

“Rex wanted to take me out and cool me off,” he added. “I played physical out there, that is all that was.”

It was an incredibly frustrating drive for the Jets.

“What can I say about that?” tight end Kellen Winslow said of all the penalties. “Especially that one drive. I mean come on. It was beyond ridiculous.

“The league needs to take a look at that because that can’t happen,” Winslow continued. “Let us play, ya know? Every play was like a call. It must have been six or seven calls. Come on, you got to let us play a little bit. I’ll leave it at that.”

Wilson cooled off and returned after being benched for one drive. He managed to avoid any more penalties and the Jets somehow overcame all the flags to win.

“Sometimes those things happen,” Ryan said. “And you can’t put your personal situation in front of the team’s and that’s what I think we had to remind him of. And Kyle came back and responded, played well after that.”
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Rookie cornerback Dee Milliner, the ninth pick in April's draft, was benched at halftime of the New York Jets' 13-10 loss to the New England Patriots on Thursday night at Gillette Stadium. And this was on a night on which Tom Brady was human; imagine if he was actually hit.

Jets coach Rex Ryan was upset with Milliner because he made a couple mental mistakes and was beaten on an apparent 25-yard touchdown pass to Kenbrell Thompkins -- a play that was reversed because the ball touched the ground.

"The young man is going to be a tremendous player, there's no doubt, but I said to him, 'I want you to watch on the sideline,'" Ryan said. "Sometimes when you do that, it's the best thing for you. ... I'm trying to win a game and put in who I think has the best chance to win it. The young man, he's going to be a great player. But at that time, I went with the veteran."

Kyle Wilson and Darrin Walls split the duties at Milliner's spot.

This has been a shaky start for Milliner, the former Alabama standout. In the opener, he allowed a touchdown to Tampa Bay's Mike Williams. Milliner missed two preseason games because of a strained Achilles tendon.

Milliner took the benching in stride.

"I was fine with it," he said. "It was a coaching decision. I'll always back him up on any decisions he makes. He just felt like he needed to pull me out and watch."

Milliner said he made "simple mistakes" -- with costly ramifications.
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Interesting night for a couple of Jets cornerbacks.

Rookie Dee Milliner, who didn't play in the Jets' 27-20 victory over the Eagles, was seen leaving MetLife Stadium in a walking boot. The top pick has been dealing with a calf injury for a couple of weeks, but this was the first time he was seen in a boot -- hardly the picture you want to see 10 days before the season opener.

Another interesting scene: Nickel CB Kyle Wilson, working with the starters in Milliner's place, started and played much of the first half. Rex Ryan rested nearly every starter and key reserve, so it was a surprise to see Wilson so involved in the final preseason game.

Teams often have a hidden agenda when giving a veteran significant playing time in the finale, perhaps showcasing him for a trade.

"We want to get Kyle some returns," Rex Ryan said. "That was the main thing because he's our backup kickoff returner and punt returner. You don't want to throw him out there just to do that specifically, so we put him out there on the corner and let him have at it."

Wilson didn't return any kickoffs; he had one punt return for six yards. The Jets' top cornerback, Antonio Cromartie, got the night off.

Jason's horror show: The Jets' pass protection in the first half was brutal, to use one of Ryan's favorite words, largely because veteran LT Jason Smith was a human turnstile. Unofficially, Smith allowed three of the seven sacks. The Jets, looking for a backup swing tackle, re-signed him last week, thinking he'd be a veteran presence. Now they may have to look elsewhere.

Afterward, Smith "respectfully" declined to comment.

With the starters resting, the Jets' line, from left to right, was Smith, rookie Brian Winters, Caleb Schlauderaff, Vladimir Ducasse and Oday Aboushi. Smith didn't play the second half and the Jets didn't allow a sack. Coincidence?

One and done: Newly signed QB Graham Harrell, who arrived Wednesday, played a grand total of one snap -- a kneel-down at the end of the game. The Jets have five quarterbacks on the roster. Ryan didn't rule out the possibility of keeping four. Greg McElroy, who aggravated a knee injury in practice, didn't play.