Lito's Productivity

 

Cimini takes a look at Lito Sheppard's play since returning from an injury.

Most of the pregame hype has focused on Chad Ochocinco's planned visit to Revis Island. But there's another destination in the Jets' secondary that has been troublesome for opposing receivers. Let's call it Lito's Lair.

Since returning from a bruised quadriceps that caused him to miss five games, and limited him in three others, cornerback Lito Sheppard finally has lived up to expectations. He was on a four-game tear until last week in Indianapolis, where he struggled against rookie wideout Austin Collie.

Sheppard received a mixed review from Rex Ryan for that performance - Collie caught six passes for 94 yards - but his overall improvement has helped create an airtight environment in the secondary. In the four games prior to the Colts, the Jets allowed only 408 passing yards. They're ranked No. 1 in pass defense.

Sheppard said he has been "pain free" for the last five games.

There are some teams where the defense starts up front. The Giants are one example. When their front seven is effective getting to the quarterback (think prior to 2009), it covers a suspect secondary. It begins in the back with the Jets. There aren't many great pass rushers on the roster. Shaun Ellis and Calvin Pace are above average, but you don't game plan against them. What has made the blitzes so effective has been the secondary's ability to hold coverage and give the blitzers extra time to get there. The excellent design of the plays helps, but this defense is built from the back down.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Gang Green Nation

You must be a member of Gang Green Nation to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Gang Green Nation. You should read them.

Join Gang Green Nation

You must be a member of Gang Green Nation to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Gang Green Nation. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9341_tracker