COMMENTARY | New York Jets' OTAs are underway, and a few key storylines of interest are emerging that are sure to impact the development of the Jets' offense throughout the summer.
Chris Ivory: Feed Him the Ball
Running back Chris Ivory, a recent addition to the Jets via trade, wants to finally be the top dog in an NFL backfield. After three years of being somewhat buried in the New Orleans Saints' depth chart, Ivory wants to see his abilities yield carries and playing time.
As Ivory stated (via Conor Orr of The Star-Ledger), "I do want the touches. I feel like I can be a big threat, but overall I just want to win, man. And be a big part of that puzzle."
The Jets have an abundance of running backs competing for touches this year, including Bilal Powell, Joe McKnight and Mike Goodson. Yet there is plenty of evidence to support that Ivory can be the best of the bunch. Clearly he sees himself as a player who can handle a starting role.
Mike Goodson: Not Gone YetRunning back Mike Goodson, acquired via free agency from the Oakland Raiders, might have been in a position to stake his own claim on the starting job. However, his recent arrest on drug and weapons charges could put a damper on that. Nevertheless, for the moment Goodson is still with the Jets.
According to a tweet by Seth Walder of the New York Daily News , running back Mike Goodson should be back at practice for the Jets this coming week, as early as Tuesday.
It is important to note that these types of legal situations can take an extremely long time to play out. It is not inconceivable to think that Goodson will play for much or all of the coming season before a legal decision is made. For the moment, it appears that the Jets are going to use him while they have him.
Hayden Smith: Ready to Play
Tight end Hayden Smith was an extremely raw prospect a year ago when he joined the Jets as a rookie. A former rugby player, he had to transition to the NFL with incredibly little football experience. He spent most of the year learning the game, not participating much in actual games and catching just one in-game pass during the regular season.
This year Smith feels more ready to play professional football. He explained this to Brian Costello of NYPost.com: "There was a lot thrown on my plate... I came from a situation where I knew football from an armchair perspective and nothing more... It was overwhelming at times... I'm in a much more comfortable spot [now]."
Smith was understandably overwhelmed in 2012, diving right into professional football without the years of amateur play that most pro prospects have under their belts. It will be interesting to see if new offensive coordinator Marty Morhninweg can acclimate Smith to his West Coast offense and make him a productive part of the team this season.
Without a doubt, tight end is one of the Jets' most crucial positions of need following the loss of Dustin Keller. If Smith could fill part of that void, that would be a major win for the team.
Adam Waksman is a Yahoo! contributor in sports. He also covers the New York Jets for Bleacher Report, where he is a Featured Columnist and award-winning blogger.
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