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Studs, Duds from Jets’ preseason finale

Philadelphia Eagles v New York Jets Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images


Trenton Cannon, RB

Wow, Cannon has just looked like a completely different player over the past two games. He did not post flashy numbers against the Saints (17 yards on four carries), but for the second game in a row, he was showing decisiveness and vision that he has seldom shown in the NFL. Especially considering that he again entered the game before Elijah McGuire, Cannon’s roster spot would appear to be locked in, much thanks to his rushing performance over the last two games.

Luke Falk, QB

Similar to Cannon, Falk’s stats were not splashy (13 for 18, 91 yards, 5.1 yards per attempt, zero touchdowns), but I thought he played a sound game. It was nothing special, but for the fourth game in a row, he looked competent out there. His final preseason numbers: 29 of 36 (81 percent), 230 yards (6.4 per attempt), two touchdowns, no interceptions. Again, nothing world-changing, but Falk certainly had himself a preseason that will catch the eye of another team out there, presuming the Jets will not keep a third quarterback.

Blake Cashman, LB

The rookie had himself one heck of a game. Primed to play a key role in the Jets defense this year, Cashman had yet to really flash in the preseason, but he gave the team and the fanbase something to look forward to with a breakout performance against the Eagles.

Cashman recorded five tackles on the defensive side, with each of them making a positive impact.

  • Blew up a screen for a five-yard loss
  • Helped out Parry Nickerson on 2nd & 15, as he came from underneath to bring down the wide receiver from behind and hold him short of the sticks
  • Stopped two third down receptions short of the marker
  • Stuffed a run behind the line while punching the ball out (recovered by Frankie Luvu)

While it was against low-level competition, Cashman was arguably the best player on the field while he was out there. That’s extremely promising to see from a fifth-round rookie who is being asked to help fill the shoes of a lost starter.

Valentine Holmes, RB

It was a rough night on the ground for the Aussie (zero yards on five attempts), but he hauled in five catches for 55 yards, making a nice case for himself in that facet to close out the preseason.

Holmes always had a minuscule shot of making the 53, but he has a good chance of sticking on the Jets practice squad. The NFL’s International Player Pathway program grants Holmes a practice squad exemption, which means he can be kept on the unit without counting against the 10-player limit (although he would not be allowed to be called up during the 2019 regular season).

Bilal Powell, RB and Kyron Brown, CB

Neither of these two players appeared against the Eagles, and that’s why their nights were so great.

Powell’s roster status has felt slightly below lock level, while it seemed Brown was just another cornerback in the competitive mix. However, both players being held out of action against Philadelphia should confirm they will be making the team.

Regarding Brown, Adam Gase said he was healthy enough to play and the team did not want to risk his health. That sounds like the way a coach would talk about a player he plans to have on the team going forward.

When Trumaine Johnson was injured in camp, Brown was the first man to take his spot (although soon after, Brown was injured). He only got to play in one preseason game, logging 41 snaps against the Giants, but the Jets must be very happy with his performance on the practice field to hand him this spot without a sparkling preseason resume.

Kyle Phillips, DE

Phillips probably does not have a shot of making the 53-man roster, but he had an outstanding night. The undrafted rookie logged three run tackles for no gain or less, two sacks, and a quarterback hit forcing an incomplete pass.

Marcus Cooper, CB

The veteran corner picked up an interception, a splash play that could help separate him from the rest of the cornerbacks on the bubble. It was the first interception of the preseason by a Jets defensive back.


Davis Webb, QB

As the third quarterback into the game, Webb had some moments, as he completed 18 of 23 passes for 176 yards, but he tossed a pair of awful interceptions. Webb has zero shot of sticking with the Jets in any form, but he also might have laid a hit to his chances of latching on with another team in the league.

Greg Dortch, PR/WR

Nothing major here, but I think it is worth nothing that Dortch muffed his first punt of the preseason. He was able to fall on it, but it was a relatively easy fair catch opportunity that he simply failed to get underneath of. The rookie has looked comfortable in the punt return game to this point, so hopefully that play is not a sign of things to come.

Elijah McGuire, RB

Another game, another low YPC mark for McGuire. He got a lot of work, but did not make much of it. McGuire picked up 29 yards on his 14 rush attempts, a measly 2.1 yards per carry.

McGuire did catch five passes for 35 yards, but none resulted in first downs.

The third-year back finished the preseason with 77 rushing yards on 30 carries (2.6 YPC), picking up only three first downs as a rusher. Obviously, the offensive lines he ran behind were not very good, so efficiency would be hard to come by. Regardless, as a bubble player, you need to find a way to stand out at some point, and McGuire has not done that.