Positive Reviews So Far on the Vladimir Ducasse Blocking Tight End Experiment

The Jets have dabbled this year using Vladimir Ducasse as an extra tight end in power sets. Yesterday we probably saw them utilize him as extensively as any point all season. The results were good. The Jets were productive running it with an extra lineman, and Ducasse was productive as a blocker aside from one holding penalty.

I think there is a lot to like about seeing more of this. It cannot hurt Ducasse's development. He gets reps at game speed. Real experience is going to help him get comfortable with game situations. These are low pressure snaps. He is an extra lineman, not a primary guy. His job is usually not going to be critical like it would be if he was a primary blocker at guard. He is an extra helper.

I also like the idea in general based on the way the Jets are built. The past two weeks there has been a subtle but definite shift in the offense. The team is no longer asking Mark Sanchez to carry much of the load. Sanchez has been reduced to high percentage passes to move the chains. He is not making multiple reads at this point. The Jets are going to need to rely more on the run game. That means grinding things out and weaning on defenses. An extra lineman pounding consistently helps win the war of attrition and wear down the opposing front. While Ducasse is still pretty raw, the one thing he can do is drive a guy right in front of him back.

So far the Ducasse experiment is a success. We should probably see more of it. As an added bonus, it means less time for Matthew Mulligan.

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