The second episode of Jets on Hard Knocks aired last night on HBO. Overall the show was good but it lacked the level of excitement that the first level achieved. They showed less of Rex Ryan cursing so maybe that was the difference. We are Jets fans after all so most of us are potty mouths.
They episode opened with the old stadium and the Bruce Springsteen song Wrecking Ball. They showed some Jets and Giants clips. Parcells getting carried off the field by the Giants. I was surprised they didn’t also cut to a Parcells clip from the 1998 season with the Jets.
The main focus of episode # 2 was the Jets\Giants preseason game. One week to go, that was heard often throughout practice. They had a theme of the coaches being unhappy with the defense. Rex Ryan and Dennis Thurman (defensive backs) both talked to Bart Scott about the tempo and the young guys not studying enough as well as making excuses.
The players that were featured in this episode were:
- Joe McKnight: His coverage was not flattering. They mentioned that he threw-up during the OTAs. Add in his failed conditioning test at the start of camp and McKnight is off to a bad start. One sequence showed McKnight getting a play wrong and Running Backs coach Anthony Lynn giving him the business. Telling him that he needs to get better and concentrate on the small details.
- Bart Scott: Pretty hard to put together an episode and not have some Bart Scott highlights. Last week the focus was on telling Scott to shut up at times. This week Scott had the line of the night about Joe McKnight. He said that McKnight was mad because he had to take a pay cut to play for the Jets after leaving USC.
- Mark Sanchez \ Mark Brunell: They showed a lot along the lines of the veteran tutor. After the Sanchez interception in the Giants game Brunell was there with a pick-me-up. Scary to think that Sanchez didn’t have that veteran influence last season. Matt Cavanaugh also spent some time telling Sanchez to be more confident after a bad play and improve his body language (i.e. stop sulking).
- Nick Mangold \ Kris Jenkins: A really nice video sequence showing these two Pro Bowlers going at it in camp. Think about it Jets fans, Nick Mangold is the center and Kris Jenkins is the Nose Tackle. When have the Jets had more talent at those positions? Yes, the answer is never.
Darrelle Revis was mentioned but that talk was kept to a minimum. Initially they recapped the highlights about Revis from the first episode. Then they showed a press conference and talked about the media blackout that was agreed to by both sides.
Mike Westhoff got a lot of air time this week. They talked about his bone cancer 23 years ago, the titanium plate in his leg. And showed a lot of special teams clips. Mostly Westhoff stressing that Special Teams boils down to who wants it more.
Rex Ryan cursed less this week. Woody Johnson said he had no problem with the cursing. Watching Rex you realize how much he loves this game. He seems to say it ever other sentence. His passion is evident and the players he seems to root for the most are Fullback John Conner and Defensive End Vernon Gholston.
The episode ended with the preseason game versus the Giants. They showed a lot of the first team and how happy the Jets staff was with how they played. The second and third teams didn’t earn any praise. Defensive Coordinator Mike Pettine had a very telling comment about the backups. He told Rex that what concerns him is that some of those guys are going to be on the team, they are counting on them. That seemed to be a shot at the back end of the secondary which is a cause for concern.
- The players get a night off
- The left guard battle
- Braylon Edwards beard. Does it stay or go?
Tell us what you thought of the episode in our New York Jets hard knocks discussion thread.