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A couple of topics today in New York Jets Website Whispers – we take a look at Stephon Heyer and “Hard Knocks.”
We reached out to a long-time Washington Redskins insider for his take on right tackle Stephon Heyer.
Heyer spent the first four years of his career with the Redskins, before joining the Oakland Raiders last year.
When Heyer made the Redskins as an undrafted free agent in 2007, and ended up starting very quickly, it was a feel-good story because he came from the near-by University of Maryland.
So this observer also knew him from college.
So what does he bring to the table?
“He [bleeps],” said the insider. “He is not the most mobile. I dubbed him ‘Highway 74’ because defenders always went thru him to get the QB.”
But it seemed like the Redskins were very high on him his first couple years in the Nation’s Capital (at least that was the vibe that I got.)
“Not really,” according to the insider. “He made the team as an undrafted free agent, and was a decent story. But he was never good. Coaches publicly praised, privately ripped.
So what can the Jets get out of him?
“He can be a mediocre third tackle,” the insider said. “He is strictly a backup.”
Basically what the Jets are doing is having a casting call at right tackle, with Wayne Hunter, Heyer and Ray Willis competing for the job.
There is no way Austin Howard is in this competition. The Jets brass is so antsy about the upcoming season, there is no way they will go with an unproven commodity like Howard. They aren’t going to take that kind of risk.
And you know what, if the Jets don’t like what they see from Hunter, Heyer and Willis, they will look for somebody else this summer on the waiver wire, or via an August trade . . .
The Jets football brass almost suffered the same fate at the Miami Dolphins – they were almost forced to do “Hard Knocks” against their will.
Woody Johnson wanted to be on “Hard Knocks,” but Mike Tannenbaum and Rex Ryan didn’t want to do it this time.
Johnson likes the publicity he brings to the team, and likely believes it helps the team at the box office (from what I hear, there are a lot of Jets’ tickets available right now.)
The Dolphins ticket situation is awful, and their business side is in full panic mode. Their season ticket sales are really low (somewhere in the 30,000 vicinity).
So they have agreed to go on “Hard Knocks.”
Do you really think it’s a good idea for a rookie head coach, like Joe Philbin, to be conducting his first training camp with cameras all over the place – in meetings, huddles, etc? Of course not!
And the GM, Jeff Ireland, is a Parcells’ disciple, exceedingly close-to-the vest, who you know wants nothing to do with this, in his heart of hearts.
But South Florida economy is terrible, and the Dolphins ticket sales are equally as bad.
So the owner wants “Hard Knocks.”
And what the owner wants, the owner usually gets.
Mike and Rex are lucky that Woody backed down at the 11th hour.
This was the last thing the Jets upcoming four-ring circus in Cortland needed.
(Premium will return by 8 pm on Thursday with a report from OTA’s.)