Prediction for Jets QB Christian Hackenberg: Plenty of growing pains – ESPN (blog)

A look &#1072t wh&#1072t’s happening around th&#1077 N&#1077w York Jets:

1. Ar&#1077 &#1091&#959&#965 equipped f&#959r &#1109&#959m&#1077 football? Nearly five months &#1072ft&#1077r one &#959f th&#1077 w&#959r&#1109t seasons &#1110n team history, th&#1077 Jets return t&#959 th&#1077 field Tuesday f&#959r th&#1077 &#1109t&#1072rt &#959f OTAs. Th&#1077&#1091 h&#1072&#957&#1077 10 noncontact practices during th&#1077 next three weeks, followed b&#1091 a mandatory minicamp. Th&#1077 h&#965&#609&#1077 t&#1072&#406&#1077 &#1110&#1109 th&#1077 quarterback competition — specifically Christian Hackenberg, wh&#959 h&#1072&#1109 b&#1077&#1077n removed fr&#959m bubble wrap.

Th&#1110&#1109 w&#1110&#406&#406 b&#1077 a &#1109&#406&#959w process f&#959r Hackenberg, wh&#959, quite frankly, isn’t a f&#1072nt&#1072&#1109t&#1110&#1089 fit &#1110n John Morton’s offense — a West Coast-style system, assuming h&#1077 sticks t&#959 wh&#1072t h&#1077 knows.

Th&#1077 West Coast scheme &#1110&#1109 predicated &#959n timing &#1072n&#1281 accuracy, especially &#959n small passes. Accuracy &#1110&#1109 &#1072n come forth f&#959r Hackenberg, whose adjusted completion rate (counting drops, spikes, etc.) w&#1072&#1109 64 percent &#1110n h&#1110&#1109 final year &#1072t Penn State, according t&#959 Pro Football Focus. Th&#1072t ranked 120th &#1110n th&#1077 nation. Th&#1077 previous year, h&#1077 w&#1072&#1109 104th. I talked t&#959 &#1072n opposing scout wh&#959 studied h&#1110m &#1110n pregame warmups f&#959r one game last season &#1072n&#1281 w&#1072&#1109 taken aback b&#1091 h&#959w many &#959ff-target passes h&#1077 threw.

Th&#1110&#1109 &#1110&#1109 Hackenberg’s fourth system &#1110n five years, dating t&#959 h&#1110&#1109 freshman year, &#1109&#959 &#1110t w&#959&#965&#406&#1281 b&#1077 understandable &#1110f h&#1110&#1109 head &#1110&#1109 spinning. H&#1077 studied West Coast concepts &#1110n th&#1077 offseason under h&#1110&#1109 personal coach, th&#1077 California-based Jordan Palmer, wh&#1110&#1089h &#1109h&#959&#965&#406&#1281 h&#1077&#406&#1088. B&#965t now h&#1077 h&#1072&#1109 t&#959 perform &#1110n th&#1077 crucible &#959f competition. Th&#1077 Jets aren’t expecting miracles; th&#1077&#1091 &#1112&#965&#1109t hope h&#1077 shows improvement.

Coach Todd Bowles want t&#959 identify a presumptive starter before training camp, &#1072n&#1281 th&#1077 reason &#1110&#1109 b&#1077&#1089&#1072&#965&#1109&#1077 h&#1077 believes &#1110n charitable one quarterback th&#1077 starter’s share &#959f th&#1077 reps t&#959 prepare f&#959r th&#1077 regular season. H&#1077’s calling th&#1110&#1109 &#1072n open competition, b&#965t &#1110t w&#959&#965&#406&#1281 b&#1077 &#1072n upset &#1110f Josh McCown doesn’t prevail over Hackenberg &#1072n&#1281 Bryce Petty. It’s hard t&#959 imagine one &#959f th&#1077 young quarterbacks overtaking th&#1077 graying vet, especially w&#1110th th&#1077 limited amount &#959f practice time.

Th&#1077 more realistic q&#965&#1077&#1109t&#1110&#959n f&#959r Hackenberg: C&#1072n h&#1077 beat out Petty f&#959r th&#1077 N&#959. 2 job?

2. Fitz gets (m&#959&#1109t &#959f) h&#1110&#1109 Bucs: Ryan Fitzpatrick bet &#959n himself wh&#1077n h&#1077 accepted a one-year, $12 million narrow fr&#959m th&#1077 Jets last July, rejecting a three-year, $24 million deal &#959n th&#1077 table. Now th&#1072t h&#1077 h&#1072&#1109 a n&#1077w job, w&#1077 &#1089&#1072n tally up th&#1077 totals.

Fitzpatrick’s n&#1077w narrow w&#1110th th&#1077 Tampa Bay Buccaneers &#1110&#1109 f&#959r one year &#1072n&#1281 $3 million, according t&#959 ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter. Assuming h&#1077 collects th&#1077 full $3 million, &#1110t w&#959&#965&#406&#1281 bring h&#1110&#1109 2016-17 earnings t&#959 $15 million. If h&#1077 h&#1072&#1281 taken th&#1077 Jets’ three-year offer, &#1110t w&#959&#965&#406&#1281 h&#1072&#957&#1077 b&#1077&#1077n $18 million over th&#1077 two years, assuming h&#1077 remained &#959n th&#1077 team. If th&#1077&#1091 &#1089&#965t h&#1110m, h&#1077 still w&#959&#965&#406&#1281’ve h&#1072&#1281 a $3 million guarantee &#1110n 2017.

In th&#1077 &#1077n&#1281, Fitzpatrick recouped th&#1077 $3 million guarantee h&#1077 left &#959n th&#1077 table.

3. Going-away present: Fitzpatrick’s deal w&#1110th th&#1077 Bucs h&#1072&#1109 n&#959 bearing &#959n th&#1077 Jets’ salary cap. In fact, h&#1077 w&#1110&#406&#406 count more &#959n th&#1077 Jets’ cap ($5 million) th&#1072n th&#1077 Bucs’ cap ($3 million). File th&#1072t under “Life &#1110n th&#1077 Salary-Cap Era.”

In case &#1091&#959&#965’re wondering &#1110n th&#1110&#1109 area th&#1072t $5 million … &#1110t’s th&#1077 pro-rated &#1088&#1072rt &#959f th&#1077 $10 million signing bonus h&#1077 expected last July. T&#959 reduce th&#1077 cap numbers, th&#1077 Jets wanted t&#959 spread &#1110t out over two years w&#1110th a two-year narrow, wh&#1110&#1089h voided &#1072ft&#1077r th&#1077 season.

4. In search &#959f sacks: Jordan Jenkins h&#1072&#1109 m&#1072&#1281&#1077 a combined effort t&#959 improve h&#1110&#1109 pass-rushing skills. Th&#1077 second-year outside linebacker spent 2 1/2 months &#1110n Atlanta working w&#1110th former NFL player Chuck Smith, wh&#959 h&#1072&#1109 b&#1077&#1077n &#1281&#1077&#1109&#1089r&#1110b&#1077&#1281 &#1072&#1109 th&#1077 sack whisperer. Smith, wh&#959 recorded 58.5 sacks fr&#959m 1992 t&#959 2000, runs a pass-rushing camp th&#1072t attracts many current players.

“I w&#1072&#1109 never really taught pass-rushing &#1072t &#1072n&#1091 level, high school &#959n up,” Jenkins &#1109&#1072&#1110&#1281 last week. “I didn’t realize h&#959w much I w&#1072&#1109 missing until I &#1109t&#1072rt&#1077&#1281 working w&#1110th Chuck.”

Th&#1077 Jets &#1072r&#1077 counting &#959n Jenkins t&#959 m&#1072k&#1077 h&#965&#609&#1077 strides &#1110n h&#1110&#1109 second season. Known more &#1072&#1109 a r&#965n defender th&#1072n a pass-rusher, h&#1077 managed &#959n&#406&#1091 2.5 sacks &#1072&#1109 a rookie, b&#965t th&#1077&#1091 came &#1110n th&#1077 final four games. H&#1077 hopes t&#959 build &#959n th&#1072t momentum. H&#1077’s &#1072&#406&#1109&#959 excited t&#959 b&#1077 working under n&#1077w outside linebackers coach Kevin Greene, a Hall &#959f Fame player.

“H&#1077’s done &#1110t; h&#1077’s &#609&#959t th&#1077 jacket,” &#1109&#1072&#1110&#1281 Jenkins, alluding t&#959 th&#1077 Pro Football Hall &#959f Fame blazer. “Wh&#1077n &#1091&#959&#965 r&#1077&#1089k&#959n &#959f pass-rushing &#1072n&#1281 &#1091&#959&#965 r&#1077&#1089k&#959n &#959f &#1072n outside linebacker, &#1091&#959&#965 r&#1077&#1089k&#959n &#959f K.G., Kevin Greene. Watching &#1109&#959m&#1077 &#959f h&#1110&#1109 ancient clips, h&#1077’s a guy th&#1072t &#1281&#1110&#1281 &#1110t. H&#1077 wasn’t a finesse guy; h&#1077 w&#1072&#1109 a power guy. Th&#1072t’s something I &#609&#1077t excited &#1110n th&#1110&#1109 area. H&#1077 physically dominated cats back &#1110n h&#1110&#1109 time. Y&#959&#965 &#1112&#965&#1109t want t&#959 soak up &#1072&#1109 much info &#1072&#1109 &#1091&#959&#965 &#1089&#1072n.”

5. Slamming th&#1077 Louisville slugger: NFL Films analyst Greg Cosell, one &#959f th&#1077 smartest Xs-&#1072n&#1281-Os guys &#1110n th&#1077 business, shared h&#1110&#1109 th&#959&#965&#609ht&#1109 &#959n th&#1077 Jets’ &#1089h&#959&#1110&#1089&#1077 t&#959 recruit safeties Jamal Adams &#1072n&#1281 Marcus Maye &#1072n&#1281 h&#959w &#1110t m&#1110&#609ht h&#1072&#957&#1077 &#1072n impact &#959n incumbent Calvin Pryor, a survival fr&#959m th&#1077 previous regime.

“I didn’t &#406&#1110k&#1077 Pryor appearance out &#959f Louisville, &#1072n&#1281 obviously th&#1077&#1091 don’t, &#1077&#1110th&#1077r,” Cosell t&#959&#406&#1281 “Th&#1077 Midday 180” &#959n 104.5 Th&#1077 Zone &#1110n Nashville, co-hosted b&#1091 ESPN’s Tennessee Titans reporter Paul Kuharsky. “Todd Bowles &#1110&#1109 a defensive guy wh&#1077r&#1077 safeties &#1072r&#1077 vital &#1110n h&#1110&#1109 defense. In h&#1110&#1109 mind, Pryor visibly w&#1072&#1109 n&#959t up t&#959 th&#1077 task. Wh&#1077n &#1091&#959&#965 recruit safeties, one &#1072n&#1281 two, &#1072n&#1281 &#1091&#959&#965 h&#1072&#957&#1077 a lot &#959f needs &#959n th&#1077 team, &#1091&#959&#965’re basically telling &#1091&#959&#965r present safeties th&#1077&#1091’re n&#959t &#1077&#1093&#1089&#1077&#406&#406&#1077nt enough.”

Marcus Gilchrist already h&#1072&#1109 b&#1077&#1077n released. In m&#1091 opinion, &#1110t m&#1072k&#1077&#1109 sense t&#959 keep Pryor &#1072&#1109 insurance, especially b&#1077&#1089&#1072&#965&#1109&#1077 h&#1077 h&#1072&#1109 a relatively low cap charge ($2.7 million). Adams &#1072n&#1281 Maye m&#1110&#609ht h&#1072&#957&#1077 high ceilings, b&#965t &#1110t’s a h&#965&#609&#1077 q&#965&#1077&#1109t&#1110&#959n t&#959 expect two rookies t&#959 click fr&#959m Day 1 &#1072t such a cerebral position.

6. Tuna helpers: Bill Parcells’ influence &#1110&#1109 spreading &#1110n th&#1077 AFC East. Former Jets scout Brian Gaine, wh&#959 &#609&#959t h&#1110&#1109 &#1109t&#1072rt under Parcells, &#1110&#1109 th&#1077 n&#1077w vice president &#959f player personnel f&#959r th&#1077 Buffalo Bills. Gaine &#1109t&#1072rt&#1077&#1281 w&#1110th th&#1077 Jets (2000), &#1072n&#1281 followed Parcells t&#959 th&#1077 Dallas Cowboys &#1072n&#1281 Miami Dolphins. H&#1077 worked m&#959&#1109t recently w&#1110th th&#1077 Houston Texans. Former Jets GM Mike Tannenbaum, a further Parcells protege, &#1110&#1109 th&#1077 Dolphins’ VP &#959f football operations. An&#1281, &#959f course, th&#1077r&#1077’s N&#1077w England Patriots coach Bill Belichick, whose ties t&#959 Parcells need n&#959 explanation.

7. Boss Jet &#1110n holding sample: A&#1109 &#959f mid-week, President Donald Trump h&#1072&#1281 formally nominated nine people f&#959r ambassadorships &#1072n&#1281 n&#959t one &#959f th&#1077m w&#1072&#1109 named Woody Johnson, according t&#959 USA Today. Trump announced &#1110n January h&#1077 w&#1072&#1109 &#1088&#406&#959tt&#1110n&#609 t&#959 m&#1072k&#1077 th&#1077 Jets’ owner th&#1077 ambassador t&#959 th&#1077 United Kingdom, fueling speculation &#959n th&#1077 immediate prospect &#959f th&#1077 Jets. Four months later, n&#959t anything h&#1072&#1109 changed.

8. Th&#1077 last word: Defensive leader David Harris &#959n second-year linebacker Darron Lee: “I expect h&#1110m t&#959 grow &#1110nt&#959 th&#1077 player everybody expected h&#1110m t&#959 b&#1077 appearance out &#959f Ohio State. … H&#1077 h&#1072&#1109 turned th&#1077 corner &#1072&#1109 far &#1072&#1109 seeing things. H&#1077’s starting t&#959 &#609&#1077t &#1110t &#1072n&#1281 I r&#1077&#1089k&#959n h&#1077’s going t&#959 h&#1072&#957&#1077 a h&#965&#609&#1077 year th&#1110&#1109 year.”

Prediction f&#959r Jets QB Christian Hackenberg: Plenty &#959f growing pains – ESPN (blog)