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Saturday, September 29, 2012
Coach's big decision: How to cover Vernon?

By Rich Cimini

In 2006, the Jets had TE Vernon Davis rated very highly on their draft board. In fact, he was in the conversation before they decided to use the fourth overall pick on LT D'Brickashaw Ferguson. On Sunday, they have to figure out a way to defend him. He's 6-foot-3, 250 pounds with 4.4 speed.

Davis has 13 receptions for 169 yards and four touchdowns, tied for the league lead.

"He's definitely a matchup problem with his size and speed," S Eric Smith said. "With his size, it's hard to put a corner on him. With his speed, it's hard to put a safety on him. He's going to cause a lot of problems you have to be aware of."

S LaRon Landry is the perfect candidate to cover Davis. He has the straight-line speed to keep up with him, and he has the tenacity to get physical with him at the line of scrimmage.

The 49ers like to use their two-TE package, which allows them to move Davis around the formation. No doubt, they will try to isolate him in space. It's conceivable the Jets could use CB Antonio Cromartie on Davis in certain situations; Cromartie has covered athletic tight ends in the past. Thing is, if they put Cromartie on Davis, it would leave them vulnerable in the cornerback-wide receiver matchups.

Yeah, they miss Darrelle Revis.