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News » New York Jets Inside Slant 2009-05-15


New York Jets Inside Slant 2009-05-15


New York Jets Inside Slant 2009-05-15
With unhappy running backs Thomas Jones and Leon Washington absent from the Jets' facility because of contract disputes, Danny Woodhead, who signed as an undrafted free agent with the Jets in 2008, got almost all of the snaps at running back during the first week of organized team activities. Also in the backfield were veteran fullback Tony Richardson and fullback Jehuu Caulcrick, a 2008 undrafted free agent who got a few snaps at tailback during the week.


Jones' boycott of voluntary conditioning and practices has been going on since March, so his absence was hardly a surprise. He has made $13.1 million in the first two years of a four-year deal and is scheduled to make $900,000 this year, and thus wants to renegotiate.

Washington didn't begin skipping voluntary activities until May 11, after indicating several times in the previous weeks he didn't think it would come to that. He is scheduled to make $535,000 this season in the final year of a four-year contract, and is believed to be seeking a contract in the neighborhood of $6 million per season. Those talks between the Jets and Alvin Keels, Washington's agent, hit a snag recently.

When asked if he was surprised Washington wasn't there, coach Rex Ryan replied, "I would say maybe a little. I was disappointed, but again, it is a voluntary camp. Things like this come up every year on every team. Again, Leon is a great guy and who knows where he is getting advice from or whatever?"

The Jets will have a mandatory minicamp from June 9-11, and Ryan indicated he expects both players to be there. Plus, he expects them to be playing when the season begins.

"I think when we go to play our first game against Houston" on Sept. 13, Ryan said, "I believe both of them are going to be with us and ready to go. I am definitely confident on that."

"Obviously, we'd love to have them here," right tackle Damien Woody said. "Those guys are key cogs in the offense. ... All that stuff will settle itself out. We've just got to keep moving forward with the guys that are here. And once those guys come back, we'll plug them right in and move right along."

Quarterback Kellen Clemens noted that the Jets haven't changed their offense under fourth-year coordinator Brian Schottenheimer, so it's not as if the running backs are missing the installation of a lot of new stuff. Although, truth be told, the Jets have returned to the myriad shifts and formations they used in 2006 and 2007, after Schottenheimer was forced to ditch them last year because diva Brett Favre didn't like them.

"We're running the same system," Clemens said. "Obviously, we all love Thomas and Leon and miss them when they're not here, but they're handling their own personal stuff. We're doing what we're doing with Danny and Jehuu and T-Rich (Richardson). It's more reps for them and they're all benefiting from it."

And, to be fair, Ryan did praise Woodhead, saying, "it does provide an opportunity for us to get a good look at Woodhead and, to be honest, I'm impressed with him. ... The young man has some ability."



Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: May 15, 2009

Brandon Moore Name: Brandon Moore
#65
Position: G
Age: 28
Experience: 6 years
College: Illinois
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