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FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — Todd Bowles subscribes to the hot-hand philosophy. Or, in this case, hot legs.

When it comes to distributing the rock, the New York Jets coach prefers to stay in the moment and ride the most productive running back — or so he says. With that in mind, it should be easy to figure out the rotation Sunday against the Cleveland Browns.

Bowles should stick with Bilal Powell and rookie Elijah McGuire. If Matt Forte (turf toe) is healthy enough to play, he should be one of the guys, but not The Guy.

Don’t get me wrong, Forte still has value to the offense and he’s an excellent presence in the locker room, but he doesn’t have big-play ability. In 2,276 career carries, he’s never had a run longer than 68 yards.

Last Sunday, Powell went 75 yards for a touchdown on his first carry, McGuire went 69 yards for a score on his fourth.

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Let’s not over-think this: The Jets (2-2) need to keep feeding Powell and McGuire.

Bowles said the backfield plan remains a “work in progress,” but he said Powell and McGuire will continue to get the ball. How much he didn’t say.

“We left some plays out there on the field,” he said. “I know they got the two big runs, and we’re running the ball, we’re making progress every week. We just have to keep making progress and utilize the guys we have and try to take advantage of certain situations when we can.”

The three-headed monster looks good on paper, but it’s hard to execute because certain runners need the ball to develop a rhythm. Clearly, Powell doesn’t need much time to get his engine churning, although there was a fluky element to his touchdown run. The Jacksonville Jaguars, thinking he was down by contact, stopped their pursuit.

The Jets turned to Powell and McGuire, who combined for 256 yards, because Forte was out with the injury. When Forte is playing, the coaches have a tendency to forget about Powell. That’s directed mainly at the previous offensive staff, although new coordinator John Morton was guilty of that in the first 26 minutes of the opener.

Former center Nick Mangold offered his take on the running-back situation, saying Powell has been “overlooked over the years.” Mangold said he hasn’t watched too much this season, but he left no doubt about his opinion.

“B.P. is the guy,” Mangold said Tuesday on SNY TV’s “Jets Stream” podcast. “That’s the guy you want to roll with.”

When he found out that Forte was out last week, Mangold said he picked up Powell for his fantasy team. Smart move.

 

 

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EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — In a show of solidarity, New York Jets acting owner Christopher Johnson joined the players on the field for the national anthem, linking arms with quarterback Josh McCown and rookie safety Jamal Adams.

In fact, the entire team — players, coaches and staff members — linked arms for the anthem Sunday before their game against the Miami Dolphins at MetLife Stadium.

The Jets have an unusual dynamic because owner Woody Johnson works for President Donald Trump, whose criticism of NFL protests on Friday sparked leaguewide outrage. Johnson is the U.S. ambassador to the United Kingdom and has said in the past that he’s not in favor of players protesting the anthem.

The Jets have yet to comment publicly on Trump’s controversial remarks. At the end of the first quarter, the Jets released a statement from Johnson, who avoided any criticism of Trump.

“It was an honor and a privilege to stand arm-in-arm unified with our players during today’s national anthem. We are very proud of our players and their strong commitment to work in our community to make a positive, constructive, and unifying impact.”

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OAKLAND, Calif. — The New York Jets’ defense was challenged by coach Todd Bowles last week in a meeting room — the defensive line, in particular. Some players were caught by surprise, but they vowed to respond with a bounce-back performance against the Oakland Raiders.

They failed. Miserably.

With no pass rush, poor coverage and shoddy tackling — the trifecta nobody wants — the Jets were embarrassed 45-20 at a raucous Oakland Alameda-Coliseum on Sunday. The Jets allowed touchdowns of 26, 43 and 52 yards, the latter two on the ground. All told, they surrendered 410 total yards, putting the team in a 14-0 hole and wearing down in the fourth quarter. The Jets have allowed 818 yards in two games. That stinks.

“We’re supposed to be a run-stopping defense,” linebacker Jordan Jenkins said. “We have to find ways to eliminate that. It’s getting to the point where it’s out of hand.”
Marshawn Lynch and the Raiders accumulated 410 yards of total offense against the Jets. Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images
Look, no one expected the Jets to upset the Raiders — they’re in different leagues — but this was troubling because the defense was supposed to be their strength. If you can’t count on your strength to carry the team, what do you really have?

Afterward, Bowles admitted his defense is “not very good at all,” adding, “Some of the young guys played young at times.” He tried to find some positives, telling the players the game was decided by only five key plays. Hey, he has to try something.

What it means: The Jets are 0-2 for the first time since 2007. The 45 points were the most allowed by a Bowles-coached team. Anybody surprised? Didn’t think so. Actually, they were competitive for two-plus quarters — it was 21-13 in the third quarter — but their personnel deficiencies were unmasked by the Raiders. Kalif Raymond’s muffed punt before halftime, setting up an easy Oakland touchdown, was an absolute killer. Bowles’ challenge is to keep the team unified as the losses begin to mount. On the positive side, so to speak, the “Suck for Sam” campaign is thriving.

What the Jets did well: You might not believe this, but they actually improved on offense from Week 1. Jermaine Kearse, already their No. 1 receiver, scored two touchdowns. The pass protection was surprisingly effective and Josh McCown (17-for-25, 166 yards) had only one turnover (a strip sack) and showed more aggressiveness than last week. It might not sound like much, but it’s something to build on.

What the Jets didn’t do well: Aside from Morris Claiborne, the Jets didn’t make any significant additions at cornerback. They put their trust in Buster Skrine and Juston Burris, figuring they’d hold up as the No. 2 and No. 3 corners. The Raiders saw them as the weak links in the secondary and attacked. Michael Crabtree had a career game, beating Burris for two touchdowns and Skrine once. Burris also missed a tackle on a 43-yard touchdown run by Cordarrelle Patterson, who lined up as a running back.

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Fantasy fallout: Kearse, who arrived at the end of the preseason in a trade, has emerged as the No. 1 fantasy option. He and McCown already have good chemistry. The Jets went with a three-headed backfield, giving rookie Elijah McGuire his first shot. This meant less work for Matt Forte, whose fantasy value is slipping
Where’s the pass rush? Bowles’ challenge to the defensive line apparently didn’t spark the highly-paid linemen. Derek Carr was hardly touched, as Muhammad Wilkerson, Leonard Williams & Co. struggled against Oakland’s terrific offensive line. That lack of a legitimate edge rusher was readily apparent. It’s hard to sack Carr because he throws quickly, but the Jets had no quarterback hits.

What’s next: The Jets have their home opener against the Miami Dolphins, a chance to even their division record at 1-1. The Dolphins won both meetings last season, as their defensive front caused problems for the Jets. It’ll be interesting to see the number of no-shows at MetLife Stadium. The Jets aren’t giving their fans much to cheer about and there’s a segment of the fan base that wants them to lose every game to secure the No. 1 pick. The atmosphere could be … well, odd.

 

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Two years after bringing home Darrelle Revis with the richest contract in franchise history, the New York Jets have informed their former Pro Bowl cornerback that they will release him on March 9, the start of the league calendar.

The announcement, made Tuesday night by the team, came as no surprise and culminated months of speculation. Revis, 31, suffered a sharp decline in skill and was scheduled to count $15.3 million against the 2017 salary cap.

Revis’ ouster came 11 days after he was charged with four felonies, including aggravated assault, stemming from his alleged role in a street fight in his hometown of Pittsburgh. He is due in court March 15 for a pre-trial hearing.

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His legal issues didn’t factor into the team’s decision to release him, a source said, adding that it was “100 percent football related.” The Jets are in rebuilding mode, and sources said the organization had decided weeks ago to release Revis.

In a span of four days, the Jets parted ways with Revis and center Nick Mangold, two of the most accomplished players in franchise history.

Revis took to Twitter to thank the organization.

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Revis won’t go away empty-handed. Per the five-year, $70 million contract he signed in 2015, he is due a $6 million guarantee for 2017. That amount can be defrayed by what he makes in 2017 from another team.

The team won’t try to recoup the $6 million, a source said. Revis’ recent arrest fueled speculation the Jets could try to contest the guarantee. The team performed its obligatory due diligence on the matter, studying the contract language, but decided not to pursue the matter.

The Jets cleared $9.3 million in cap space by cutting Revis.

Revis had indicated a willingness to accept a pay cut, but one was never offered. He also offered to switch to safety, but the Jets never gave serious consideration to that idea, a source said.

“Darrelle Revis is one of the greatest players to ever wear a Jets uniform,” owner Woody Johnson said in a statement. “His combination of talent, preparation and instincts is rare and helped him become one of the most dominant players of his generation. I appreciate Darrelle’s contributions to this organization and, wherever his career takes him, his home will always be here with the Jets.”
The Jets had to make a decision on Darrelle Revis’ fate with the team by March 10. Brad Mills/USA TODAY Sports
Revis returned to the Jets in 2015 after winning a Super Bowl with the New England Patriots. It was hailed as one of the biggest acquisitions in team history — he received $39 million fully guaranteed — but the second marriage failed to live up to expectations.

He made his seventh Pro Bowl in 2015, but Revis wasn’t the same player last season. He admittedly reported to training camp out of shape, and he was embarrassed on several occasions in coverage.

“Darrelle is the consummate professional and one of the greatest to ever play the cornerback position,” coach Todd Bowles said.
Revis, a first-round pick in 2007, ascended to stardom early in his career and became known as the premier cornerback in the NFL. His ability to dominate top receivers launched the “Revis Island” moniker.

“When you’re dealing with a player of Darrelle’s caliber, these decisions are extremely hard to make,” general manager Mike Maccagnan said. “We all have a great deal of respect for Darrelle, and the significance of his time with the Jets cannot be overstated. He provided an example of how a pro should approach his craft and established his place in NFL history as one of the best at his position.”

Revis also became known for his contract problems, and a bitter dispute led to his trade to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2012. The Jets received a first-round pick from the Bucs, which they used to select defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson.

 

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The New York Jets made 23 moves Saturday, cutting the roster to the mandatory 53 players. A look at the cuts:

Most significant move: The biggest moves occurred Friday, when they traded Sheldon Richardson and picked Chandler Catanzaro (for now) over Ross Martin at kicker. There were no bombshells Saturday because, let’s be honest, the Jets don’t have a lot of talent from 1 to 53, let alone from 54 to 76. Sunday will be a key day for the Jets, who have the No. 6 waiver priority. General manager Mike Maccagnan said he will be active in looking for waiver pickups. Tight end is the biggest need.
Second-year pro Charone Peake, left, and rookie ArDarius Stewart are part of a very young Jets receiving corps. Elsa/Getty Images
Gang Green, indeed: As of now, the Jets have 20 players with less than two years’ experience, including eight rookies (all draft picks). The youngest position is wide receiver: two second-year players (Robby Anderson and Charone Peake) and two rookies (ArDarius Stewart and Chad Hansen), with newcomer Jermaine Kearse, 27, the old man of the group. Kearse’s arrival in the Richardson trade made Kenbrell Thompkins expendable.

Gone in a snap: The Jets said goodbye to longtime long-snapper Tanner Purdum, the longest-tenured player on the team. He was flawless in seven seasons (no bad snaps, no penalties), but they wanted to get young and cheaper, so they turned to Thomas Hennessy. The rookie from Duke, acquired in a trade with the Indianapolis Colts, impressed in the final preseason game. Purdum, 31, was the only holdover from the most recent playoff team, 2010. The title of LTJ (longest-tenured Jet) belongs to Muhammad Wilkerson and Bilal Powell, who have been with the team since 2011.
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Newbies find spots: Three late-preseason acquisitions — Hennessy, defensive end Kony Ealy and safety Terrence Brooks — all made the initial 53. Ealy could be the No. 4 lineman, which means he’ll probably rotate into the base defense and be used as a situational pass rusher. Brooks is the only healthy backup at safety, as Rontez Miles is recovering from a serious eye laceration.

Jets’ moves

Released (17): OL Alex Balducci, LB Frank Beltre, OL Chris Bordelon G Ben Braden, CB Xavier Coleman, FB Anthony Firkser, DL Patrick Gamble, WR Frankie Hammond, LB Connor Harris, T Javarius Leamon, WR Gabe Marks, RB Romar Morris, NT Deon Simon, S Robenson Therezie, RB Jahad Thomas, DE Lawrence Thomas, WR Dan Williams,

Terminated vested veteran (3): LS Tanner Purdum, S Shamarko Thomas, WR Kenbrell Thompkins.

Waiver/injured (1): WR/PR Lucky Whitehead.

Reserve/suspended (2): WR Jalin Marshall, TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins.

 

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FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — For the second time in 16 months, New York Jets wide receiver Devin Smith is recovering from major surgery on his right knee.

Smith, a second-round pick in 2015, was diagnosed with a torn ACL on April 17, the first day of the team’s offseason program. He will be lost for the entire season, the Jets announced Saturday at the conclusion of the draft.

“It’s bad luck and bad timing because the kid worked so hard to get back,” coach Todd Bowles said.
Devin Smith, left, was diagnosed with a torn ACL on April 17, the first day of the team’s offseason program. Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images
Smith has been plagued by injuries from almost the first moment he stepped on the field. As a rookie, he fractured his ribs on the second day of training camp. He returned and worked his way into the receiver rotation, only to suffer torn knee ligaments late in the 2015 season. As a result, he was unavailable until midway through 2016.

In two seasons, Smith, a former standout at Ohio State, has played in 14 games. He has 10 receptions for 135 yards and one touchdown.

The Jets believe he reinjured the knee before the first official workout.

“He had been around, working and training, but at the first [session] he experienced a situation with his knee,” general manager Mike Maccagnan said. “We actually examined him before he went out.”

Smith was taken for an MRI, which confirmed the tear.

The Jets drafted two receivers, Alabama’s ArDarius Stewart in the third round and Cal’s Chad Hansen in the fourth. They have 13 on the roster.

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FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — When Muhammad Wilkerson arrived in 2011, he was surrounded on defense by older leaders such as defensive linemen Sione Po’uha and Mike DeVito. When they were gone, the elder statesmen eventually became David Harris and Darrelle Revis. Wilkerson mostly kept to himself, letting his work on the field speak for him.

That Mo is gone.

Only three weeks into training camp, Wilkerson has emerged as a vocal leader for the New York Jets.

On Monday, he addressed the entire team on the practice field, letting his teammates know their “lackadaisical” attitude wasn’t cool. It was a ragged practice, and the man of few words told them they were wasting a work day.
Muhammad Wilkerson on leadership: “Being one of the guys who has been around for a while, it’s kind of only right that I took it upon myself to be more vocal.” Al Pereira/Getty Images
Even though he’s only 27, Wilkerson is the longest-tenured member of the defense, and he’s taking that role seriously. Teammates have noticed. Coaches have noticed.

“Being here seven years, I had a lot of older players that I looked up to and a lot of those older guys are no longer here,” Wilkerson said. “Being one of the guys who has been around for a while, it’s kind of only right that I took it upon myself to be more vocal.

“I feel like I was always considered a leader in my own way, just doing what I was supposed to do. But with guys not being around anymore, I had to step out of my comfort zone and speak up.”

Actually, Wilkerson has addressed the team on more than one occasion. This is good news for the Jets, a young team trying to develop leaders. It’s also good news for Wilkerson, whose promising career went sideways last season.

Not only was it his worst year from a production standpoint (4.5 sacks), but he compounded the problem with questionable behavior. He was disciplined for missing a walk-through practice — he was benched for a quarter in the next game — and he made headlines late in the season by questioning the team’s medical staff. He spent the season rehabbing a surgically repaired ankle, and he was frustrated with the program that had been created for him. Nothing went right for Wilkerson or the Jets in 2016.

 

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“We’re trying to forget last season,” he said. “As far as the team is concerned, the Jets didn’t even play last year. It’s a new Jets team and the focus is on ‘we’ and ‘us.’ Everything is about this team and this organization. We’re trying to get something clicking and something going good this year.”
A healthy, refocused Wilkerson will mean a lot to the defense. He’s the only defensive player with a Pro Bowl on his résumé (2015); Sheldon Richardson (2014) and Leonard Williams (2016) made it as injury replacements.

“The thing that’s really stood out is his leadership,” defensive coordinator Kacy Rodgers said of Wilkerson. “He’s the guy that’s calling the team up; he’s the guy that’s encouraging people to come together and do this. But the stuff he’s doing on the field, I’m really pleased with where he is right now.”

Wilkerson said he learned from watching players such as Po’uha and DeVito, both high-character individuals who brought a humble mentality to the field.

“One thing about me: I’m an observant person, so I picked things up from older guys and put it into my own game,” he said. “I molded it into the leader I should be.”

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EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — A look at the positive and negative performances from the New York Jets’ 7-3 victory Saturday over the Tennessee Titans:

THREE UP
Robby Anderson had three catches for 71 yards in the Jets’ victory Saturday over the Titans. AP Photo/Peter Morgan
WR Robby Anderson — This isn’t breaking news: Anderson can fly. Still. On the fourth play of the game, he blew past former New England Patriots cornerback Logan Ryan and made a 53-yard reception to set up the only touchdown. Ryan, one of the Titans’ big free-agent signings, played a “bail” technique on Anderson, respecting his deep speed. Didn’t matter; he still got torched. “Speed is a premium in this league, and he has it in droves,” said Josh McCown, who made the throw. It was a nice first game for Anderson (three catches, 71 yards), their No. 1 receiver now that Quincy Enunwa is done for the season. The question is, can he beat press coverage? That’s what gives him trouble.

OLB Josh Martin — Playing with the second- and third-stringers, Martin notched one of the team’s eight sacks. He also hit the quarterback on another play and later recovered a fumble. Jordan Jenkins (one sack) and Freddie Bishop started at outside linebacker, with Lorenzo Mauldin (back) sitting out with an injury. The Jets have a lot of bodies at outside linebacker and they’re waiting for two to separate from the pack. Martin is in the conversation. Chances are, they’ll go into the season with a committee approach.

QB Christian Hackenberg — Coach Todd Bowles said Hackenberg looked “comfortable” in the pocket. His performance was far from elite — no points in eight possessions — but he completed 18 of 25 passes. A year ago, he would’ve struggled to complete 18 of 25 against air, let alone a real defense. That’s called progress. “I was so proud of him because you have little hiccups here and there that weren’t necessarily his fault, but he kept battling through and played within the game,” McCown said.

THREE DOWN

The fullbacks — Julian Howsare and rookie Anthony Firkser each dropped a pass, and Algernon Brown missed a block that contributed to a sack of Hackenberg. Howsare’s drop came at the 2-yard line, costing him a walk-in touchdown. A year ago, the Jets didn’t even carry a fullback on the 53-man roster, but the position is back from extinction. It’s an important part of their West Coast offense, and they need someone who can catch the ball. New coordinator John Morton made it clear he intends to utilize the fullback. On Anderson’s 53-yard reception, Howsare was split out wide as a receiver.

 

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WR Jalin Marshall — The Jets had no fewer than four dropped passes, including one by Marshall, who also had a holding penalty. Unlike a year ago, when he made the team as a rookie free agent, Marshall is being counted on to contribute — once he returns from his four-game PED suspension, that is.

P Lachlan Edwards — He shanked a 14-yard punt, costing his team field position. Coming off an underwhelming rookie season, Edwards won’t be gifted a roster spot. He’ll have to earn it, and this wasn’t a good start.

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FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — The New York Jets’ quarterback competition is becoming less competitive as the days roll by. Josh McCown is pulling away, albeit by default.

Friday was another difficult day for the signal-callers, who were a combined 3-for-13 in red-zone plays. Let’s break it down:

JOSH McCOWN

There was some good and some bad. At one point, he completed nine consecutive passes in team periods, perhaps the best stretch of offense in camp. But when he got to the red-zone period, everything came to a halt. He managed to throw a couple of touchdown passes, but he was only 3-for-10, including an interception, in the red zone. All told, he was 12-for-20. As always, McCown worked exclusively with the first-team offense.
Christian Hackenberg seems to have regressed as Jets camp continues. Noah K. Murray/USA TODAY Sports
Wow moment: It happened in the red zone. McCown showed nice touch, hitting Deshon Foxx on a corner fade route. The 38-year-old quarterback raised his arms to celebrate; there haven’t been too many of those moments in camp. Earlier, he zipped a nice scoring pass to Quincy Enunwa, who had roller-coaster day (two drops and a diving catch).

Whoa moment: McCown tried a screen pass to rookie running back Elijah McGuire in the red zone, and it was intercepted by safety Rontez Miles, who might have returned it for a touchdown in a real game. It doesn’t get any worse for a quarterback; a play like that could be a 10-point swing in a game.

CHRISTIAN HACKENBERG

After a relatively promising start, Hackenberg has regressed over the past three practices. The people who say he should be handed the starting job should come to camp and see for themselves. Is he better than last year? No question. Is he ready to start an NFL game? No way. On Friday, he completed only 3 of 11 passes and was “sacked” three times. To be fair, he was victimized by two drops.

Wow moment: Sorry, not on this day.

Whoa moment: In the first team period, Hackenberg coughed up the ball on a sack by Lorenzo Mauldin. It was hard to tell from the sideline, but it didn’t appear that Mauldin actually stripped the ball. Hackenberg just kind of lost it. Sloppy.

BRYCE PETTY

 

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Petty said the other day he refuses to count his practice reps because he doesn’t want to get caught up and distracted by how much (or little) he’s playing. If he decided to go back to his old ways Friday, it wouldn’t have been that hard to count — one, two, three, four. Petty (1-for-3) has all but fallen out of the competition.

Wow moment: Come on, really?

Whoa moment: Late in practice, Petty and the entire third-team offense was told to run a punishment lap around the perimeter of the field. There was some confusion as they broke the huddle. Coach Todd Bowles was fed up and told them to run. Petty’s day was effectively over.

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FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — If the New York Jets adopt an “us-against-the-world” mentality this season, the breakdown would look something like this:

Pro-Jets: 53.

World: 7.5 billion.

No one believes the Jets will contend for anything other than the No. 1 pick in 2018, as outside expectations have plummeted to an all-time low. The players don’t live in caves; they’re aware of the gloom-and-doom forecasts.

“Everybody is saying ‘tanking’ and all that stuff,” Matt Forte said this week. “A lot of people are jumping ship before the season even starts, but I welcome that. All y’all can jump ship if you want to. It shows us you were never on board in the first place. … We don’t care what anybody else says. It’s about us.”

It all starts Friday, when players report to training camp.

Key questions:

1. Does Christian Hackenberg have a chance to be the opening-day starter? I wouldn’t bet your personal seat license on it, but it’s not out of the question. He narrowed the gap with a somewhat encouraging offseason, but he still has to win the trust of the coaching staff and his teammates. The only way he can do that is to perform at a high level in actual games — i.e. the first two preseason contests. It makes total sense to start Hackenberg in the preseason opener; there’s no reason not to. It’ll help the overall rebuilding effort if he outplays Josh McCown and earns the job — no freebies — but coach Todd Bowles tends to err on the side of the veteran when it comes to positional battles.
Christian Hackenberg can dazzle his way into the Jets’ starting QB role with high-level preseason performances. AP Photo/Julio Cortez
2. Does Bryce Petty have a shot? Not really. The Jets may not present it this way, but it’s difficult to have a legitimate, three-way competition at quarterback. There’s simply not enough practice reps to go around. Petty missed his chance last season, and now he’ll have to be content to ride the bench.

3. Who is the most important newcomer? Among the veterans, I’ll go with Morris Claiborne. You saw what happened last season without a true No. 1 cornerback: The secondary was torched. The Jets allowed a 43 percent completion mark on deep passes (at least 20 yards), compared with 22 percent during the height of the Darrelle Revis era (2009-12), per ESPN Stats & Information. Claiborne is the closest thing they have to a No. 1, but he must overcome a long injury history.

4. What about injured players? At least four of the nine draft picks were dealing with injury issues at the end of the offseason program — wide receivers ArDarius Stewart (groin/thumb) and Chad Hansen (knee), safety Marcus Maye (arm) and corner Jeremy Clark (knee surgery). Clark is a good bet to start out on the physically unable to perform list; that was the plan when they drafted him. Stewart, coming off two surgeries in the offseason, bears watching.

5. Which players will generate the most camp buzz? Rookie safety Jamal Adams will be one of the big stories, just watch. He’s talented and mature beyond his years. He will be a Day 1 starter and tone-setter. Look for tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins to build on his strong spring, but I’m interested to see if he can take it to game day. This should be Darron Lee’s time to shine; he has the raw talent and an opportunity to lead the linebacking corps. Defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson tweeted he was 307 pounds at his weigh-in, one below his prescribed weight — perhaps a sign he will have a bounce-back year.

6. Who will be this summer’s sleeper? Given the state of the roster, every undrafted rookie will have a chance to win a job, but the one to watch is cornerback Xavier Coleman. He really impressed in the spring and will compete for a roster spot in the revamped secondary. You root for guys like Coleman, who overcame open-heart surgery in high school.

7. Will Bowles coach differently in his third year? Yes … on a few levels. I think he’ll be involved in the offense to some degree, in part because he has a first-time coordinator, John Morton. Bowles arrived with a reputation for being a buttoned-down coach, but he left a couple of buttons undone last year. That will change; players already say he’s stricter than last season. To survive, Bowles (15-17) must prove to ownership he’s capable of leading a young team back to relevance.
8. Should Mike Maccagnan feel as much heat as Bowles? Heck yeah. They were hired together under the premise of a 50-50 partnership. The 1.0 version of Maccagnan’s Jets failed to make the playoffs, and now he’s on to 2.0 — young, cheap and scrappy. The general manager won’t get a chance to reinvent the team a third time unless his rebuilding plan bears fruit.

9. Will anything change with Woody Johnson out of the picture? There’s a new Johnson in charge. With Woody poised to become the U.S. ambassador to the United Kingdom, his younger brother, Christopher, will run the day-to-day operations. Folks at 1 Jets Drive are curious to see if his managerial style differs from that of his brother. Count on this: He will be a more visible presence than Woody, whose schedule prevented him from being at the facility on a regular basis. Chances are, Christopher will consult with big bro on key decisions.

10. Is there anything that can eliminate the gloom and doom? If Hackenberg plays lights-out in the preseason and claims the starting job, it’ll create a positive vibe as the team heads into the season. It’s the Summer of Hackenberg.