“A Play A Day” From JetsCamp
Read the second article about my experience from JetsCamp on August 8th. I transcribed the interviews that I conducted today. They were very informative interviews, and definitely a lot of fun. The players I interviewed for this article are Jamaal Westerman, Eric Smith, John Conner, D’Brickashaw Ferguson, Mark Sanchez, Scotty McKnight, OC Brian Schottenheimer, and Head Coach Rex Ryan.
I brought all my gear today. I handed Eric Smith and Scotty McKnight official www.prointerviews.org shirts. If you’re interested in getting one, go hit me up on the contact page. Here are some quotes to note from some players on the Jets and some staff members too. Eric Smith was really excited when he got his shirt for the record. If you have any suggestions of who I should try to talk to, I’m open to all suggestions. Please get back to me.
Some quotes from the Player Interviews at Jets Camp today:
Scotty McKnight : @SMcKnight21 : On how camp is going so far… “It’s good. It’s going really well. I’m just trying to get more reps early on. Now that some of the veterans are starting to practice, it’s getting more limited. I have to take advantage and make sure that when I do get in, I’m not making any mental mistakes.”
McKnight : On what’s it like to have Derrick Mason practicing on the field… “It’s great. I was just really happy when I heard the news that he was coming to join our team. He just adds so much that I can learn from. Not only do I have Santonio and Plaxico, who have each put together great careers with big time catches in the Super Bowl, and have done so many great things. Now we have Derrick Mason who’s been around and played for fifteen plus years. He’s a receiver that has made a long career for himself doing things right and making big plays. I feel extremely lucky to come into a situation where I have those three guys who I can look up to.”
John Conner : @JConner38 : On how camp is going… “It’s going pretty good. It’s good to be back and see all the guys. It sucks that we can’t have OTAs or minicamp, but I think we’re making good strides and starting to get better.”
Conner : On what it’s like being the only fullback on the roster… “It’s good. I had a great year behind Tony Richardson. I learned a lot from him. He was a great teacher for me. I’m ready to take on that role and be the guy this year.”
Conner : On what’s it like lining up as a wide receiver… “I just like to show the coaches that I’m a versatile back. Not only can I block, I can catch, I can also carry the ball. That’s something I have done in college before. That’s something I’m really looking forward to helping the team out the best way I can.”
D’Brickashaw Ferguson : @DBrickashaw : On how camp is going… “Camp is going well. It’s a little different then the years prior, but it’d definitely going well.”
Ferguson : On the changes to the offensive line and making the adjustments… “I think it’s adjusting as well as we can hope for, just because the guys that are on the line are guys that have been for at least a year or so, so until Brandon gets back, we’ll be able to continue on working with the guys that we have.”
Jamaal Westerman : @JWesterman55 : On taking snaps in a 3-point stance, rather than 2-point… “All throughout college, I was a defensive end, outside linebacker, had my hand on the field. Rex’s defense is so versatile that I line up down sometimes, line up in a 2-point depending on the situation, and the play that the offense calls. Sometimes it depends on your ability, and what you prefer, and sometimes it depends on the situation of the game.”
Westerman : On Rex saying this is your breakout year… “I’m happy he says that. I’m confident and I”m working hard every day in camp. I do want this to be the year, I show up on the film, and be the guy on the field making plays. I think us, as an entire outside linebacker group, we’re all working very hard to pick our play as a group. We all have one goal and that’s the Super Bowl, we know that we have to pick up our play to get that goal.”
On his childhood friend Scotty McKnight being on the team… I was curious to see how much I’ll even get to interact with Scotty, being my best friend growing up. He has his parents out here, and it’s so fun. Every once in a while you get a chance to step back and I remember playing Pop Warner and we’re taking pictures after games. And here we are playing in the National Football League taking pictures with his parents during camp. Honestly for the both of us, this is a dream come true playing in the NFL. But at the same time, we’re so busy, I barely get to see the guy. Unless we’re working out or going over meetings stuff or napping, I don’t even see the guy. He’s in treatment, I’m in a meeting and then we flip-flop and he’s doing something else. So it’s good, that’s a good thing. He’s busy and we don’t see each other that much.
On how Scotty is doing so far… He’s doing well. I think the reps he’s gotten with the ones, I hit him on a first down on a shallow cross. He’s smart. He knows he’s not the fastest guy. He knows he has really good hands and he has to be really smart. So he tried to pick up the system as soon as possible. He’s had a good resource in me over the offseason, but he’s done a good job. He’s going to have to play really well on special teams and he’s going to have to block his butt off. That’s how he’s going to try to make the team.
Some Notes from Press Conferences:
Head Coach, Rex Ryan : My questions to him, “What have you seen out of Defensive Lineman, Carlton Powell?“ His reply: “Well, both of those guys are doing a good job for us, but we’ll see. I (think) where we’re going to notice the younger guys, in particular, is when you get to those preseason games, and they really get a chance to show, and see if they can separate. Quite honestly, it’s going to be hard. That D-line is young and talented, so it’s a strong group. I would not be surprised if other teams were really watching our games, as well. Not saying he’s not going to make our team, but he’s going to definitely have an opportunity to showcase what he can do.”
My second question for Rex Ryan was who has been the biggest surprise on defense so far… His reply: “Biggest surprise on defense? Probably (Nick) Bellore from Central Michigan. And for me to know his name from Central Michigan, that tells you something. I don’t know if surprise is (right), we expected this young man (to be good). We were thinking about taking him in the draft. We were able to pick him up as a free agent. He was running with our two’s right away. McIntyre from Canada through Fresno has been a guy who has jumped out as well. (Jamaal) Westerman, we expected him to progress. Ropati (Pitoitua), I’m throwing you twenty names. Ropati is a guy who came off that injury. Sometimes you have to see how he does, but he hasn’t missed a beat. He looks terrific out there. Our second defensive line is so much better right now than our second offensive line. It’s hard, (Mark) Brunell is back there and can’t even get a pass off. That group has really been dominant. I think that’s what is really tilting the practice. What appears to be that the defense is way ahead of the offense, I think it’s that second unit. That whole defensive line and those pass rushers we have, I think are really dominating the practices.”
Offensive Coordinator, Brian Schottenheimer : My question to him, ‘What have you seen out of Michael Campbell?’ “I’ll tell you what. He’s made a play a day. He’s doing a good job. He’s been working a lot with the third group, but he’s making a play a day. He’s really extremely fast. Again, whenever you see somebody show up on a big play downfield, you look, and it’s him. He’s done a great job.”
Some Notes from Practice:
Scotty McKnight seems to get open and make tough catches.
The Defensive Backs look great. However, Darrelle Revis often looks like he is bored out there.
I got to meet former Jets tight end, Anthony Becht @Anthony_Becht at practice today.
Only one scuffle broke out this afternoon, but I got to see some good reps on Offense, Defense, and Special Teams.
Rex Ryan took reps at quarterback, and threw an Antonio Cromartie interception. Next time, he drops back and tries to find a window on Revis Island. He takes too long and Jim Leonhard arrives for the would-be sack.
Some notes from the Derrick Mason press conference:
On what he thought of LB Bart Scott making fun of his pink cleats… “Man, Bart always does that. He’s been doing that for the last eight or nine years, since I’ve known him. He’s always going to crack a joke. But I asked Coach Ryan can I wear them, and he gave me the okay, so I’m going to continue to wear them. My mom’s dealing with breast cancer. This is her second bout. It’s gone into remission now, so I’ll just continue to wear them throughout the whole season.”