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As you have heard from NFL players for many years, they take it “one game at at time.”
However, NFL teams do get a headstart on opponents two weeks ahead. Obviously, it would be too much heavy-lifting to start 100 percent of your preparation for the game-after-next the week of.
You ever wonder how teams get a headstart on gameplanning for games two weeks from now. That job goes to the entry level assistants called “quality control coaches.”
“All of our focus is on Carolina,” said Robert Saleh on Monday. “Obviously, the QCs will stay ahead of it with regards to breaking down tape and organizing cut ups and doing all that stuff. They’re always going to stay a week ahead.”
So quality control coaches, like Mack Brown and Chip Vaughn, will get into the weeds in New England, but all the coaches above them will have a single mindedness of purpose – focusing on beating the Carolina Panthers.
“As a coach, you can muddy the two very quickly if you start dipping your pen into ink that can wait for next week,” Saleh said. “We’ll address New England when we get there. Right now, everything is about Carolina.” . . .
Speaking of coaches preparing for opponents, Jets defensive coordinator Jeff Ulbrich is a great resource for Saleh this week. Ulbrich was the defensive coordinator with the Atlanta Falcons last year (well, for part of last year after Dan Quinn was fired on October 12). So he faced this Carolina offense under coordinator Joe Brady twice last year, so he has a good feel for it. And remember, Brady is a disciple of Sean Payton in New Orleans, so Ulbrich has seen this system quite a bit, with the Saints being in the same division with Atlanta as well.
So Ulbrich should have his Jets defense very well prepared for this game . . .
Speaking of Brady, 31, he clearly wasn’t ready to be an NFL offensive coordinator last year.
“As an organization there’s things you can do better,” said former Panthers QB Teddy Bridgewater recently on Patrick Peterson’s podcast. “I’ll just say this, for Joe Brady’s growth, that organization, they’ll have to practice different things in different ways. One thing we didn’t do much of when I was there, we didn’t practice for two minutes, really. We didn’t practice red zone. You walk through the red zone stuff and then Saturday, you come out and practice red zone, but you’d only get like 15 live reps. Guys’ reps would be limited.”
In other words, he didn’t construct an NFL offensive practice schedule properly.
So perhaps in Year Two he will learn from his trial-by-fire.
Now, instead of working with Bridgewater, his QB is Sam Darnold.
“I have something with him,” Brady said this week.
What does he have? We will find out soon.
The key for Brady to have success with Darnold, is the same key to success when he has some with the Jets – great play-calls by the coordinator, that consistently sets up ideal first reads that are open.
If that happens, Brady and Darnold should have success with each other.
September 7, 2021
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