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Morris County – Time for the good stuff from Florham Park . . .

Watching Josh Martin on the practice field today, it looks like he’s playing this week.

I saw him running full speed on the Jets’ kickoff team, which he is an integral part of. And he was with the “starters” on special teams. He wasn’t doing that last week.

This is important for the Jets. He might be their best special teams player, but he can also help them on defense at outside linebacker.

The Jets’ run defense hasn’t been very good this year. There have been tackling issues. Martin is a very good tackler . . .

Leonard Williams said Tom Brady is holding the ball longer this year. To me, there is an obvious reason for that – no Julian Edelman, who is out for the season. Brady had the best chemistry with him, and he would so often hit him on quick leverage routes. Edelman would see which way the cornerback was leaning, cut the other way, and Brady quickly released the ball. While Brady still has a quality cast of targets, he doesn’t have the sympatico with anybody else like he did with Edelman . . .

The Jets know darn well that the Patriots with 10 days to game-plan are really, really dangerous.

Belichick has said in the past, unlike so many others, he likes Thursday night games. He likes the back-end benefit of the extra time to get healthy and game-plan for the next game.

As Jets offensive coordinator John Morton said today, “[Belichick] could put in a whole new defense.”

The Patriots are always dangerous, but especially dangerous when you give Belichick, Tom Brady, Josh McDaniels and Matt Patricia ten days in the lab to prepare . . .

A lot of talk this week on who should cover Rob Gronkowski if he plays. He’s been limited in practice with a thigh injury, which could actually be a hamstring injury. Often times teams say “thigh” when they mean “hamstring” just to be vague and throw you off the scent a little. A “thigh” could also be a “quad.”

If he plays, Jamal Adams should cover him, in my opinion.

Darren Lee has one pass defensed in five games. Adams looks like the better coverage guy of the two players. I know Adams gave up a touchdown last week, but he seems to have better coverage instincts than Lee, who is often a tick late reacting . . .

Mo Wilkerson is now dealing with shoulder and toe issues. He didn’t practice today.

Somebody asked Todd Bowles if Wilkerson might need surgery on his injured toe. Bowles said he didn’t know yet.
I would suspect that Wilkerson has a turf toe, and if that is indeed the case, that surgery is very risking, and sometimes doesn’t work.

I don’t get the sense the Wilkerson is anywhere near getting toe surgery.

That would be a late, last resort in the toe injury process.

But perhaps it’s time to sit him a week. Clearly one of the reasons the Jets’ run defense has struggled, and is ranked 30th in the league, is Wilkerson’s health.

What is the point of forcing him out there this week if he’s nowhere near 100 percent with two different injuries.

Get a fresh healthy body out there, whether it’s Mike Pennel, Lawrence Thomas or Ed Stinson (who was a very good run defender in Arizona and at the University of Alabama).

October 12, 2017

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Dan Leberfeld
Dan Leberfeld
Publisher of Jets Confidential Magazine. Call 1-800-932-4557 (M-F, 12-4) to subscribe. Co-host of Press Coverage every Saturday on SiriusXM NFL Radio from 11-2.

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