Thursday, July 31, 2008

A catch-up post

First, a shout-out to Section 227, Row 5 of TGG for an amazing review of Wednesday afternoon's practice. The full report can be found here, and it's a great read about the practice, focused on the QB competition. Like the beat writers, he thought the offense looked crisper with Pennington at the helm.

*On Thursday, Eric Mangini ripped his team for a weaker practice Thursday morning. He cited the heat as a possible reason, but as he mentioned, the Jets play Miami in southern Florida week one. That is not an excuse.

*Justin Miller and Darrelle Revis both took reps at punt returner, looking very good at it, especially Revis. The other two both mentioned this as well, but maybe they'll replace Leon Washington at punt returner, where he is not as effective.

*Also on Thursday, Kerry Rhodes hit young receiver Chansi Stuckey pretty hard on a pass over the middle. Stuckey said he was glad that he was able to take a hit and get up quickly after he missed last season. Rhodes is definitely trying to be an enforcer on defense.

*Moving ahead to Friday, and first things first: the QB competition. Lo and behold, Pennington got on the interception scoreboard with not one, but two picks. One was to Kerry Rhodes near the endzone, while Justin Miller caught a pass tipped at the line of scrimmage by Brian Thomas for the other. Miller also picked off Brett Ratliff, continuing his strong showing so far. He has all the physical ability to be great, but his problem has always been mentally. He has all the motivation in his contract year, so he's hoping to get a nice deal in the offseason.

*While Pennington struggled, Clemens had his second straight good practice, showing some fire and touch. Mangini compared the QB competition to a horse race, and like in a horse race, whoever starts off the best doesn't always win. Hopefully, Clemens keeps playing well because if he develops into the quarterback the Jets hoped he could be, the team has a much higher ceiling.

I guess I should bring up Favre. Reports surfaced last night that the Jets were making a lot of progress and a deal was close, but later on, other sources said that it wasn't going to happen. Teams are now waiting on Favre to make up his mind regarding a $25 million offer from the Packers to stay retired and get rid of the headaches that would come about if he reported to training camp. That's one expensive Advil... Either way, the longer this lasts, the less negotiation power the Packers have, and the less interest other teams have in him. There's always one big exception, and that is if a premier quarterback gets hurt badly in camp or preseason. That's what the Packers may need to hope for.


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