New Jets defensive line coach Mark Carrier sees a little Terrell Suggs in Vernon Gholston. The Jets are converting Gholston, who has yet to record his first sack, to defensive end this year. The former sixth pick in the draft has bounced around between linebacker and defensive end previously, but Carrier told me he thinks Gholston can thrive if he can hone in on one position. Gholston is bulking up to 270 after playing ten pounds lighter, and he’s trying to play with more power. In order to better understand how his skills fit the position, Gholston has been watching tape of Suggs.
It seems that the new reason for Gholston's lack of success is the fact that he has been asked to play two positions so far. Now that he is only being asked to play DE at 270 he should thrive. I'm sorry I'm just not buying it, Suggs has passion, explosion and an ability to get off blocks. Suggs had success from the very start, defensive rookie of the year, pro bowl the next year.
He has made a name for himself getting after the QB from either the OLB or DE position. He has more moves than Gholston. The Ghost has always used his bull rush, and so far it's been ineffective against more powerful NFL lineman.
As a defensive end in this system he needs to plug his gaps, take on the lineman and keep them occupied to free the linebackers and blitzing defensive backs. When he did play last year, I actually thought he did a decent job against the run. If he can give us that, and offer a little bit of QB pressure in the meantime, I think we'll all take that.
I think this is a case this year of "last chance saloon" and us trying to get some value/production on our investment. I don't think he will be a world beater, he won't be a pro bowler and I doubt he comes close to touching Suggs production rate. Anything he can do this year will be better than what he has done before.
If you do have faith that Gholston can do something this year, I heard they are selling Ghost jerseys for $20 at Modells.