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Florham Park – Chris Owusu (knee) still isn’t practicing. Todd Bowles was asked by a reporter if Zac Stacy would return kicks again if Owusu can’t go, and he said that is likely.
Once he said this, I asked him if they are kind of giving up on the play by having a big running back, who doesn’t have great speed, returning the ball.
He didn’t like that, which I can understand. But it’s not my job as a reporter to be liked.
He threw it back at me, “Who would you use?”
I said “Walter Powell” (who is no longer with the team – he’s on the Bills’ practice squad).
Bowles said, “Who would you cut (to make room)?”
I said “One of the offensive linemen?”
He said, “Which one?”
I said I won’t say it now because this was being broadcast, and it would way out of line for me to do that on a live broadcast. That is unfair.
I don’t want you to think I was being rude in this exchange. Remember, he was coming at me with these questions, and I was answering them.
They are carrying five backup offensive linemen which is a very high number.
Now obviously if they have a rash of injuries, this might look ingenious, but a lot of teams carry eight.
And this strategy is clearly hurting them on special teams, whether it’s on punt coverage, or by not allowing them to bring in another kick returner.
Do you need both Dakota Dozier and Brian Winters? Generally teams go with a backup swing player on game day to backup all three inside spots, but it seems they don’t view Winters as a center. But Dozier never played center until this off-season, so he’s still a work-in-progress as a center. He’s really not much more advanced as a center than Winters. To me, I go with one backup swing player.
Is Jarvis Harrison safe on the practice squad? Probably a 50-50 proposition. Perhaps a team could grab him, but he’s so raw right now, he’s not going to help another team. But hey, he was a fifth round pick. Teams put fifth round picks on practice squads all the time, and if they lose them, they lose them. The Jets picked up Steelers fifth round pick Wesley Johnson last year when they tried to put him on their practice squad. You deal with it, and live for another day.
Bill Belichick moves fifth round picks around all the time – practice squad, waivers, whatever.
Mike Maccagan might be a little too protective of his first draft class.
Harrison and Deon Simon (now on the practice squad) didn’t really make the team this summer based on merit. They made the team because they were draft picks. Clearly Maccagnan likes their long-term potential.
Here is why I’m criticizing the Jets on this Stacy thing.
Look, if you need to have him fill in as the kick returner for one game, maybe two, due to roster constraints – understandable. You to do it three games in a row, that is overkill, and too long to write-off the position. You need to have a player, whether it’s a backup cornerback, backup receiver, somebody with “track speed” as Bobby April said last week when asked about an ideal returner. Once again, I really like Zac Stacy as a running back – very, very tough – breaks a lot of tackles, good vision, good receiver. Nice trade by Maccagnan.
I don’t like him as a kick returner – at all.
October 14, 2015
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