Mike Tannenbaum’s relentless quest to improve the roster has lead to a dizzying array of moves at the bottom of the roster. The team has been moving players off and on the practice squad at an alarming rate. While everybody was up in arms at the abrupt cutting and re-signing of respected veteran fullback Tony Richardson, numerous young player’s careers have been riding a roller coaster as they are waived, claimed, cut, added and deleted from the practice squad.
The initial announcement of practice squad players included the following:
C Robby Felix6’3″ 295 Felix signed with the team in May following a season in the UFL with the Las Vegas Locomotives. Felix was a four year starter at UTEP and was in the Ravens camp in 2009 as an undrafted free agent until being a victim of the final round of cuts.
WR Larry Taylor5’6″ 180 The CFL standout was signed by the team in January, presumably to bolster the return game. Graduating UConn in 2007, Taylor played two seasons for the Montreal Alouettes and was named Most Outstanding Special Teams Player and to the conference all-star team in 2009. Taylor was initially outlasted by David Clowney and waiver wire pick-up Patrick Turner and was a victim of 4th round pick Joe McKnight’s draft status and potential.
DT Martin Tevaseu6’2″ 325 The UNLV DT was with the Browns as an UDFA earlier in the preseason and played in the East West Shrine game. A JuCo transfer from Santa Rosa, Tevaseu was a higher level prospect, sought by Boise State, Colorado U, initially choosing Arizona State, before suffered a knee injury his third day of practice. He ballooned up to 420 pounds, but got into shape as he got to UNLV and was the team’s defensive MVP.
LB Joshua Mauga6’1″ 245 An ILB prospect, Mauga was with the team in last year’s camp and was even on the practice squad for a short week. The Nevada product suffered from some concussion issues and camp and did not get a fair chance to see the field.
S Donovan Warren 5’11″ 192 was initially signed to the practice squad. At one point Warren was considered a top CB prospect, however, his poor speed numbers at the combine and his pro day put to rest any talk of him being a high draft pick. The Jets signed the former Wolverine with the hopes of moving him to safety, but lingering ankle issues and concussion problems kept him from seeing the field this preseason. The team has since deleted him from the practice squad. It is possible that his concussion issues made him a “safe” cut, meaning that other teams would not want to sign him because he is currently unable to practice. It is likely that the team would have preferred to have CB Brian Jackson6’0″ 198 on the practice squad. Jackson, out of Oklahoma, is another corner prospect that timed badly. He outlasted Warren on the 53, but was let go when Darrelle Revis signed. He has since signed with the Giant practice squad.
LB Ricky Foley 6’2″ 252 The former CFL’s Most Outstanding Canadian was only with the team a week. After leading the CFL in sacks with 12, Foley was in Seahawks camp before joining the Jets. He was on the practice squad, but deleted when the Jets were able to sign …
LB Cody Brown 6’3″ 252 The former UConn DE was a 2nd round pick of the Cardinals in 2009. He spent that season on IR after suffering a wrist injury. Brown was looked at as a project that could initially contribute as a situational pass rusher, but would take time to learn the full duties of a 3-4 OLB. Despite some reports of him showing improvement in camp, Arizona decided to cut ties and he chose the Jets practice squad.
DE Jarron Gilbert 6’5″ 285 Everybody remembers him jumping out of the pool, but the raw Gilbert was a project many of us saw as a nice 3-4 DE prospect in the 2009 draft. The Bears drafted him in the 3rd round out of San Diego State and hoped to move him to UT. He failed there, lost weight down to 270 and moved to end, but could not contribute there either. The Jets initially put a waiver claim in on Gilbert, but withdrew it when DE Marcus Dixon became available from the Cowboys. Several teams were interested in adding Gilbert to their practice squads, but he preferred to join Rex Ryan who worked him out prior to the draft and who allegedly almost selected Gilbert with the first pick of the 3rd round, opting instead for Shonn Greene. The Bears chose him three picks later.
RB Chauncey Washington5’11″ 222 A late cut out of USC, he was beaten out by Danny Woodhead, a coaches favorite who adds some diversity on a team that is currently carrying only 3 active WR. Washington was a 7th round pick of the Jaguars and a member of the active roster and practice squad of the Cowboys and was signed by the Jets in December 2009. Washington has played a total of 8 NFL games with the Jags and Cowboys and has 9 rushing yards on 4 carries.
This leaves us with seven players for an eight man practice squad. Who will fill that final spot? Most likely it will be WR Patrick Turner 6’5″ 220 Turner was a waiver wire pick up from the Dolphins. A disappointing 3rd round pick from USC in 2009, Turner did not catch a ball and was beaten out by two UDFA rookies. Most expected him to make the Dolphins when they traded Camarillo. He offers some size and the team elected to go with his potential over David Clowney. Cut when Richardson returned to the team, they will probably want to see what he can provide.