Wednesday, August 7, 2013
The Snap: Training camp, Day 14
By Rich Cimini
CORTLAND, N.Y. -- On Wednesday, the Jets will conduct their final full practice before the preseason opener Friday night in Detroit. What we'll be looking for:
1. Geno's turn: After a nice start to camp, Geno Smith "dipped a little bit" on Monday and Tuesday, according to offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg. It'll be interesting to see how the rookie handles his first taste of adversity, albeit on a minor scale. Smith will work with the first team in practice, but he'll back up Mark Sanchez in the game.
2. Conspiracy theory: Does this mean Sanchez is the favorite to win the job? Not at all. You could argue that Rex Ryan has set it up for Smith to prevail. Assuming Smith starts the second game, it'll be easier to face a benign Jaguars defense at home than an aggressive Lions front four on the road. Some might try to connect it to the situation in 2009, when veteran Kellen Clemens started the first game and Sanchez -- the preferred candidate -- went in the second game. The problem with that is, Sanchez got the tougher end of that deal, a road game against the Ravens.
3. Dropping like flies: The depth at wide receiver is taking a hit. Vidal Hazelton suffered a potentially serious knee injury Tuesday, two days after WR Jordan White was released with an injury. With Santonio Holmes still nowhere close to being ready, the depth is stretched thin. It'll create an opportunity for undrafted rookie Ryan Spadola. Clyde Gates needs to rebound after a poor practice.
4. ICYMI: On Tuesday, the headline was -- what else? -- the quarterback competition, as Ryan named Sanchez the starter for the first game. No surprise there. Mornhinweg said Sanchez got the ball because "he's earned it." That smells a bit fishy. Meanwhile, RB Joe McKnight, he of the concussion that's not a concussion (according to the Jets), made the wrong kind of news. He was arrested for having outstanding traffic tickets. And from the dog-bites-man category, rookie CB Dee Milliner moved into the starting lineup, ahead of Kyle Wilson.