As we once again assess the players who have left the Jets since cutdown day last season, the focus would usually be on whether the Jets should be wishing they still had or glad to be rid of the talent being reviewed.
However, it’s also interesting to gauge what the relative success of these players can tell us about the current roster. If a player who couldn’t get off the third unit with the Jets is on the way to earning a role elsewhere, then perhaps that tells us the current depth at that position is better than advertised. Conversely, if a guy who was a contributor or close to earning a role with the Jets can’t crack the rotation in their new home, then perhaps that’s a sign the Jets lack depth at that spot.
With that in mind, let’s check out how everyone fared in their second preseason game, starting with the highest profile players and working our way down the list:
Muhammad Wilkerson - DL, Packers
After missing the first preseason game, Wilkerson made an immediate impact on his first play as he rocked David DeCastro back into the pocket, contributing to Mason Rudolph throwing a pick-six on a rushed throw. That was the kind of sign of the old Wilkerson we didn’t see very often last season. Despite only being in for the first quarter, Wilkerson also had time to stuff two runs. However, the Packers’ run defense did give up some big chunks of yardage, including a 26-yard touchdown, with him in the game.
Demario Davis - LB, Saints
Davis also had success on the very first play of game two as he was credited with a tackle for loss on the first snap, although he arguably missed the tackle and his teammates cleaned up. He was also blocked out of a running play that went for a 10-yard gain later on, as the Cardinals went three and out on their first two drives but then drove 61 yards for a touchdown. He reportedly stood out in practice on Sunday.
Austin Seferian-Jenkins - TE, Jaguars
Seferian-Jenkins didn’t play in game two for undisclosed reasons, although word out of Jacksonville is that he was “held out” rather than injured. After not having been targeted in game one, Seferian-Jenkins needs to show some production in this week’s game.
Chandler Catanzaro - PK, Bucs
Catanzaro bounced back from a rough first game by nailing all three of his field goals, including a 48-yarder, and all three extra points. He also added five touchbacks and a special teams tackle for good measure.
Bryce Petty - QB, Dolphins
Petty was once again the fourth quarterback to get into the game for Miami this week, but may have a chance to move up to number three after David Fales was just 1-for-6 with an interception. Then again, the media are still talking about Fales as challenging Brock Osweiler for the back-up role. Petty entered late and led a two-minute drill, which he finished off with a 15-yard touchdown scramble. He completed five of six passes on the drive for 58 yards, including a nice 21-yard throw down the seam.
Christian Hackenberg - QB, Eagles
Hackenberg was a surprising addition for the Super Bowl champions and, despite throwing interceptions on his first two passes at Eagles practice, has already moved up the depth chart due to Nick Foles’ injury. With Carson Wentz also still working his way back, the Jets might see a lot of Hackenberg next week. However, he didn’t get any snaps in last week’s game.
Jeremy Kerley - WR, Bills
Kerley remains in the Bills’ plans, but had a quiet second game as he was targeted just once on a 3rd-and-5 pass that was broken up. He also fair caught a punt, which actually provided his best contribution because there was a 15-yard penalty for fair catch interference on the play.
Wesley Johnson - OL, Lions
Johnson showcased his versatility this week by seeing extensive playing time at all three interior line positions. He had mixed results in the running game and was only beaten once in pass protection, but was called for a holding penalty. He had been expected to start the game, but Graham Glasgow’s earlier-than-anticipated return from injury meant that Johnson didn’t get into the game until the second half.
Kony Ealy - DE, Cowboys
Last week it was reported that the Cowboys were experimenting with moving Ealy inside and he did play all over the defensive line in last week’s game, seeing action in all four quarters. He had more of an impact than in game one as he batted a third down pass at the line and beat his man once as a pass rusher. He had one tackle in the running game, on a four-yard gain.
Julian Stanford - LB, Bills
Stanford remains in the mix for a roster spot and he helped his cause with a run stuff, one pressure and a pass defensed in game two. However, he also gave up two first downs in coverage.
Freddie Bishop - OLB, Lions
Bishop has had a decent preseason so far and produced again in the second half of game two. He had four tackles against the run, including one stuff, and beat his man once as a pass rusher. Bishop’s roster chances improved a few days ago with the news that his teammate Steve Longa tore his ACL.
Damore’ea Stringfellow - WR, Seahawks
Stringfellow only had one catch for five yards in game two, although it was for a first down and came on the game’s first series; a sure sign that he’s right in the mix near the top of the depth chart. He was targeted unsuccessfully one other time.
Jojo Natson - WR, Rams
Natson didn’t play much on offense in game two and wasn’t targeted, but continues to impress with his punt returning. He broke the first tackle on two separate occasions, including on a 14-yard return. He also returned two kick-offs but didn’t get out past the 25 on either.
Marcus Williams - CB, Saints
Williams was one of two former Jets cornerbacks brought in by the Saints last week, which is especially confusing given the fact that they already have a Marcus Williams in their secondary. The older Williams didn’t record any stats and wasn’t targeted in 12 snaps.
Robert Nelson - CB, Saints
Nelson was the other former Jets cornerback the Saints brought in last week. He played just four snaps in game two and wasn’t targeted.
Korren Kirven - OL, Cowboys
Kirven had a rough outing at right tackle with the third unit this week, as he was beaten three times in pass protection and allowed his man to stuff a run, despite only being in the game for the last few series.
Bucky Hodges - TE, Steelers
Hodges is another ex-Jets who is getting a good opportunity due to injuries. Xavier Grimble is the latest Steelers tight end to go down, as he requires hand surgery. Hodges has let to produce in preseason as he had a false start and no targets in the passing game last week.
Jeremy Langford - RB, Miami
Langford saw action for the first time in preseason last week and showed a couple of flashes as he caught nine and eight yard passes, breaking a tackle on one of those. His only carry was a successful two-point conversion and he also added a tackle after an interception.
Edmond Robinson - LB, Arizona
Robinson is also benefiting from injuries to his teammates as Josh Bynes and Deone Bucannon are currently out. Robinson had four tackles - three against the run and one short of the marker on a third-down pass - and added a quarterback pressure. However, he got blocked out of a number of plays at the second level.
Geoff Gray - OL, Browns
The Browns pared down their rotation this week, so Gray didn’t get any reps on offense and looks to be an extreme long-shot to make the roster. He played two snaps on special teams.
Akeem Judd - RB, Packers
Judd decided to retire after last week’s game, which saw him gain just three yards on five carries. He was also called for an offensive pass interference penalty, although he did contribute a tackle in kick coverage.
Michael Hunter - CB, Broncos
Hunter had been suffering from migraines during the week, so did not suit up for game two against the Bears.
Travaris Cadet - RB, Bills
Cadet is in a battle with another ex-Jet, Marcus Murphy, for the third running back role and didn’t help himself much in game two, as he racked up just 11 yards on six touches and also had a fumble and got beaten for a pressure in pass protection. However, he did pick up two first downs including a short-yardage conversion.
Marcus Murphy - RB, Bills
Murphy seems to be winning the competition with Cadet as he flashed again with a 39-yard punt return and rushes of 22 and 14 yards as he ended up with 39 yards on four carries. However, he did drop a pass on his only target in the passing game. With the Jets’ struggles to find a punt returner, they may regret letting Murphy go to the practice squad after a preseason muff, although if he was on their current roster, that would mean there was no room for Elijah McGuire and/or Trenton Cannon.
Anthony Johnson - DL, Colts
Johnson missed Monday night’s game against the Ravens. He hasn’t been practicing lately due to a back injury.
Will Tye - NE, Patriots
Tye saw plenty of action in game two and had mixed results as a blocker. He ended up with one catch for 11 yards, but he dropped his only other target. He’s not expected to make their roster at the moment.
Kalif Raymond - WR, Giants
Raymond only had one catch, for seven yards on 3rd-and-10, in game two, although he showed good athleticism to go up and get it. He was unsuccessfully targeted two other times. As a return man he was tackled at the 22 and 14 on two kick-offs but did have a nine-yard punt return. In practice over the weekend, Raymond was filling in at running back due to injuries and even rushed for a score in a red zone drill.
Jason Vander Laan - TE, Panthers
Vander Laan didn’t play in game two, as he hasn’t practiced since last Tuesday due to an undisclosed injury.
Lord Hyeamang - DT, Rams
The UDFA Hyeamang only recently signed with the Rams and hasn’t played yet in preseason.
- S Jeremy Cash is out for the season with a knee injury suffered in the first preseason game;
- DL Claude Pelon signed with Tennessee but then tore his ACL a few days later; and
- TE Zach Conque signed with Jacksonville but was released in June.
Of course there are still several recent departures who aren’t currently with a team, such as Bruce Carter, Courtney Upshaw and Jalin Marshall. We’ll add these to the list if they get a deal.