Matt Slauson’s a semi-hangin’ judge.
“I’m kind of tough on myself,” the Jets’ left guard said. “I’d give myself a B-minus.”
In the Jets’ 31-16 loss to the Giants on Monday night, Slauson said he “had three pass plays I wish I had back,” and there was a red-zone holding call on a short LaDainian Tomlinson run.
But all things considered, let’s give Slauson an incomplete with a green star showing hope for improvement. It was, after all, his first pro start of any kind. And the morning of the game, he and the Jets’ O-line found out that Nick Mangold wouldn’t be playing.
“Nick had a headache and it’s probably not even related” to a blow to the temple he suffered in practice, head coach Rex Ryan said. “It’s one of those things where you’d much rather be safe than sorry.
So Rob Turner moved in at the pivot, and say what you want about Turner’s versatility and scrappiness, he’s not yet Mangold to Slauson, who had perhaps gotten used to the experienced No. 74 lining up to his right during Cortland practices.
But Slauson did fire out nicely on some of the Shonn Greene and LT runs, and the only sack the OL gave up of Mark Sanchez came when first-round rookie Jason Pierre-Paul got past RT Damien Woody late in the first half.
“It’s really day-to-day. There are some days where my run blocking is just great, then other days where my pass blocking is great and my run blocking isn’t,” Slauson assessed. “But I’m heading in the right direction. I’ve just got to keep on working, keep on pushing.”
Second rookie Vlad Ducasse worked at LG in the second half. We’ll see later this week if Ryan, Brian Schottenheimer and OL boss Bill Callahan will decide to tweak the rotation or the percentage of plays for either man when the Jets visit the Carolina Panthers on Saturday night.
Big Jenks Back
Kris Jenkins was feeling frisky in his postgame interviews, which generally means Big Jenks is pretty happy. Finally the big but less big than previously No. 77 settled down and talked about his physical well-being after his first game activity since tearing his knee in Game 6 vs. Buffalo last season.
“I feel fine,” Jenkins said. “It was great. It was something I definitely had to get out of my system. It’s something I understood that the first game, there’s going to be a little bit of an adjustment because I haven’t been out there in a while, and when we’re going at practice it’s not at that tempo and the fans out there, the environment’s different. Being out there was a little bit of a shock because I haven’t been out there in a while, but at the same time, once I got a couple of plays under my belt, I felt great.”
Jenks was also asked the always provocative question regarding Giants RB Brandon Jacobs chirping about how the new stadium may not say “Giants” on the outside anymore but it’s still the Giants’ stadium, which is an incorrect statement on the face of it, and Jenks let the questioner know that.
“Brandon’s my boy but it’s always fun and games with him,” Jenkins said. “This is the first year I can say he’s heavier as a running back than I am as a D-lineman right now. So back at you — jab, jab!”
We mentioned in our game story that WR Victor Cruz, the Giants rookie and Ducasse’s former UMass teammate, did something no other Jets preseason opponent had done in at least two decades, which was score three touchdowns in a game on the Green & White.
Three TD grabs in an NFL summer game hasn’t happened for a while. Terrell Owens was the last to do it, for San Francisco against Miami in 1998.
Cruz also racked up 145 yards on six catches, which also ranks up there on the list of most summer receiving yards by Jets opponents. Perhaps not surprisingly, since the Jets play the Giants every year, is that the top four opponent yardage totals since 1992 have been put up by Big Blue wideouts. The other three: Ike Hilliard (7-150-1) in 2003, Hakeem Nicks (6-144-2) last year and Amani Toomer (3-124-1) in 2000.
The last Jets receivers to reach the 140 plateau in preseason? Dedric Ward (6-141-1) against the Giants in ’98 and Wayne Chrebet (10-140-1) at Tampa Bay in ’97.
Tags: Dedric Ward, Kris Jenkins, Matt Slauson, Rex Ryan, Terrell Owens, Victor Cruz, Vlad Ducasse, Wayne Chrebet
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