FLORHAM PARK–The day started with some bizarre Tweeting of an ESPN AFC East Preview video (which appeared on espn.com) where the announcers said that Darrelle Revis had returned from his holdout. He has not. Clearly this was pre-taped on the assumption that Revis would be back by the time it aired and somebody mistakenly made it live. The link has since be taken down.
As you’ve seen, Kevin O’Connell was waived leaving Kellen Clemens as the number three quarterback. In addition, Clemens restructured his contract this morning. Although he handled himself very calmly and very professionally, I can’t imagine Clemens is too happy about how all of this has played out.“We talked about it. I just wanted to make sure all parties were on the same page,” Clemens said. “We have an understanding and I’m fine with it.” Asked to elaborate, Clemens said he preferred to keep those details to himself.
He did say that the new deal of course lowers his salary. The choice he was given: restructure or be cut. “I took a reduction in pay in order stay here,” he said.
The bottom line is that the team wasn’t going to pay their two back-ups in excess of $1 million dollars each. Clemens was originally scheduled to make $1.1 million, while Brunell is making around $1 million. Clemens is now making more than the veteran minimum but less than the $1.1 million.
Rex Ryan commented later, “The only way Kellen Clemens was not going to be on this team was if he had a chance to be a starting quarterback and then I would have traded him. You can’t have all your quarterbacks at X amount of dollars. But I also told him if he could get a starting job I would not stand in his way.”
Someone whose star continues to rise is Danny Woodhead. “The more I’m around Woodhead the more I’m like, ‘Is this in pencil or is this in pen?’” As I’ve been saying, the writing is on the wall for David Clowney’s release.
John Conner is a freight train and Ryan loves it, although Conner is actually hurting people. He was the cause of Josh Mauga’s concussion. Mauga didn’t practice again today. “He’s beaten up almost everybody we’ve got on the team,” Ryan said about Conner. “Usually you never have to worry about an offensive player taking out a defensive player on an isolation block.” Apparently you do when the offensive player is Conner.
Jeff Cumberland had no idea that Ryan already confirmed that all four tight ends would make the team. He responded with only a slightly raised eyebrow, and calmly said, “I’ve got my foot in the door. Now I have to take the opportunity to build it up.”
With Calvin Pace out for a while, Vernon Gholston will get some snaps at outside linebacker, which he is taking in stride. This started immediately after Pace went out with his injury against the Redskins. “It was on the sideline,” he said, “they said ‘Vernon go to rush.’ I said, ‘OK.’” For the most part his role will remain the same. The biggest difference will be that he will have to drop into coverage a little bit more but pass rushing will still be his primary responsibility.
None of the starters will play, including Mark Sanchez who will not only wear the play-calling headset, but according to Rex Ryan, will call the plays. This is something Ryan did with Ed Reed and Ray Lewis when he was in Baltimore. It could be a very good learning opportunity for Sanchez. It might also be very entertaining.
Brodney Pool (ankle) and Kenwin Cummings (stinger/shoulder) were once again working on the bikes, not on the field. Also out or limited were, Donovan Warren (head), Josh Mauga (head), Charlie Tanner (knee) and Damien Woody (back).