New York Jets: Brandon Marshall
On Wednesday, Dolphins receiver Brandon Marshall said Jets cornerback Darrelle Revis gets the benefit of the Jordan Rule. Just like Michael Jordan got the benefit of the calls when he played in the NBA, Marshall reasoned, so does Revis in the NFL.
On Thursday, Revis said he didn't exactly see it like that.
"If a referee makes a call, they make a call," Revis said. "If they don't, they don't."
Jets coach Rex Ryan said maybe Marshall's comments were more about trying to massage any future calls than about any deference Revis might get from the stripes.
"I think he's trying to put it in the officials' mind," Ryan said. "Come on, Brandon's a big guy, a great receiver, and if anything let's just say it's pretty physical. I don't know if Revis is doing the pushing or not; I'm not sure. But those two guys do get after it -- two great players going at it.
"And I agree with the Jordan deal. I think he is the cornerback equivalent of Michael Jordan," Ryan said of Revis.
Revis said calls go both ways, and the corners aren't the only ones who initiate contact. Marshall pushes off sometimes when the ball is thrown his way; there are a lot of wide receivers who do. Marshall is "by far" the most physical receiver in the league, Revis said.
"There's a lot of holding out there. There's a lot of pushing off out there," Revis said. "But you've got to play through the plays."
Both Marshall and Revis are from the Pittsburgh area and both agreed there was mutual respect between the two, and they are friendly off the field.
"It's always a good fight between me and him," Revis said.
Jets center Nick Mangold said he wasn't big into basketball, but got the comparison.
"Revis is a heck of a player," Mangold said. "I don't know much about DB play or corner play, but I imagine the player that he is, he probably doesn’t need the rule."
Linebacker Calvin Pace said one thing that amazes him about Revis is that he hasn't reached his ceiling. Revis, 26, is basically at the top of him profession and continues to push and improve.
"He's basically the Michael Jordan of cornerbacks, so why wouldn't he be able to get a call?" Pace said. "Receivers always say they're getting interfered with or getting held. I guess it's kind of in the receiver handbook of what you're supposed to do. Greatness, when you're great you get away with a little pushoff. Or if you're Michael Jordan maybe you get away with a little over-the-back."
It also can give opposing defenses, even ones as stingy as the Jets, fits all game long.
Stopping the Wildcat formation will be a key defensive theme for the Jets Sunday, and the players maintain as long as they stay within their positions and their defensive schemes, they will be well equipped to handle it.
“Every time we play it they’re going to throw in something new or something different. The biggest thing is to not get affected by it, to attack and play your technique,” defensive end Vernon Gholston said. “Seeing it before, you know how to adjust to it. You come in with certain defenses or certain adjustments to it, but at the end of the day, it’s all about getting to the football.”
The first time the two teams met last season, the Dolphins used the Wildcat formation to great success. Miami ran the formation 16 times in its 151-yard rushing performance in Miami’s 31-27 win on Oct. 12, 2009. When the teams played again On Nov. 1, 2009, at Giants Stadium, the Jets shut down the Wildcat, as Miami used it just seven times for six yards in its 30-25 win.
As Gholston described, the biggest problem with the Wildcat is it becomes a numbers game for the opposing defense. When the Wildcat formation is called, an extra blocker or runner is brought in, forcing the defense to adjust by usually bringing in an extra guy into the box. This leaves the team a little thin in the secondary, and there is always the option of the running back throwing a pass out of the formation.
In the secondary, as explained by Jets safety Brodney Pool, the key is to be disciplined. If a player expects them to run the ball every time, a defense can get beat by a pass. The secondary personnel can’t be out of place, and has to watch the play develop in front of it.
“They can give you formations that spread the field a little bit more that you have to lighten up,” Jets defensive coordinator Mike Pettine said. “Now that the running back’s taking the direct snap, you’re basically getting two-back runs against defenses that are only geared to defend one-back runs. That’s the advantage of it. You really have to look at the math of each formation and try to make sure that the math is right in your favor defensively.”
While Miami upgraded its passing game with the addition of wide receiver Brandon Marshall in the offseason, the Dolphins are still a run-oriented team. Their running back tandem of Ronnie Brown and Ricky Williams is one of the best in the game, and runs the Wildcat arguably as good as any team in football.
The Jets know what to expect Sunday night. Now, it’s time to go out and stop it.
“I think if we do a good job of stopping their offense we can get our offense a chance to stay on the field and make plays,” Pool said. “You saw what they did last week when we got them on the field. We’re just going to have to come out and play good and stop Miami.”
Week 1: Ravens at Jets
Week 2: Patriots at Jets
Week 3: Jets at Dolphins
Week 4: Jets at Bills
Week 5: Vikings at Jets
Week 6: Jets at Broncos
Week 7: Bye
Week 8: Packers at Jets
Week 9: Jets at Lions
Week 10: Jets at Browns
Week 11: Texans at Jets
Week 12: Bengals at Jets
Week 13: Jets at Pats
Week 14: Dolphins at Jets
Week 15: Jets at Steelers
Week 16: Jets at Bears
Week 17: Bills at Jets
No, the Jets don’t open with the Dolphins. Despite the anticipation of matching up against Jason Taylor’s former team, complete with showtime wide receiver Brandon Marshall, that matchup will be in Miami on week 3 and again on Dec. 12 when the Jets host the Dolphins.
The NFL has given the Jets a worthy opponent in Week 1, when the Ravens will be the first opponent for the Jets at the New Meadowlands Stadium on Monday night on ESPN. Rex Ryan’s former team will offer plenty of storylines, and a competitive game.
The Jets could face their old quarterback Brett Favre when the Vikings come to New York on Oct. 11, for another Monday night game. Favre has yet to reveal whether or not he plans to come back yet. In another matchup of familiar faces, the Jets are in Cleveland on Nov. 14, Eric Mangini's new home and where Ryan's brother is the defensive coordinator.
As for weather, the Jets won’t get a break from the cold late in the season. The visit to the Dolphins takes place on Sept. 26 and the last four games are, in order, hosting the Dolphins, traveling to Pittsburgh and Chicago, and closing the regular season when the Bills visit.
I pick the wins and losses. Keep in mind this is my first stab at this and I'm no Nostradamus.
When Brandon Marshall addressed the Miami media today, the wide receiver was asked about Jets cornerback Darrelle Revis. The newest Dolphin played a little coy when he was asked about the Bermuda Triangle of the backfield where wides get stranded, a place called Revis Island.
"I’m not sure where that is,” Marshall said at his press conference. “Revis is a friend of mine. Where is Revis Island? Hopefully I visit there soon."
The Jets will now face Marshall and the Dolphins twice this season. Jets linebacker Bart Scott described the matchup between Revis and Marshall as Magic-Bird, seeing two great players in their prime and one that would interest NFL fans, not just those in the AFC East.
“I think you’re talking about arguably one of the best receivers against the best corner and a guy that had 10 picks the year before,” Scott said.
Revis was much more lowkey about the matchup. He also described Marshall as a friend, and texted the wide receiver on Wednesday to congratulate him on the contract.
“It’s good for them,” Revis said of getting Marshall. “They get a big time receiver and I get to go up against him twice.”
Last time Revis had a public war of words with a receiver, it was Chad OchoCinco. If Revis had held him to his promise, OchoCinco would be Chad Johnson again after Revis shut him down.
“Ya’ll know me, I love competition,” Revis said. “I compete that’s what I do.”
Clearly, Revis lets his play do the talking and last season that was loud enough. The Jets defensive backs as a unit seemed pleased to see the AFC East get another high caliber skill player.
Revis and Antonio Cromartie might have the high-profile assignments, but Eric Smith said that receivers like Marshall will change the way the backfield is set up.
“A guy like that they kind of command safety help,” Smith said. “You put a corner on them, a lot of times you put a safety over the top (to) give them some kind of help but that’s something we’ll have to see, how they’re using them as the season goes on.”
The moves throughout the AFC East will make the division a bigger draw. When the schedule is released next Tuesday at 7 p.m., it will be interesting to see how many matchups the NFL puts in prime spots. But certainly a division game could command a national audience given names like Marshall and Santonio Holmes.
“You see teams out there making moves and all going for one thing and that’s the Super Bowl,” Jets safety Brodney Pool said.
Mike Tannenbaum said you could never have too many corners, and said the Jets might even look or one in the NFL Draft starting next Thursday. He said Jets coach Rex Ryan demands it.
“That’s just who Rex (Ryan) is, he can not have enough corners, it’s crazy,” Tannenbaum said. “So yeah, we’re going to add more corners. And they’re all going to play.”
Those corners know what’s expected of them. Dwight Lowery was drafted two years ago and likes all the offseason moves, but knows whose responsibility it becomes when the clock starts.
“All this stuff is great for offseason headlines but ultimately it comes down to us as players,” Lowery said.