Early returns on Jets first-round DE Quinton Coples have been positive, and Gang Green could have quite the D-end pairing of Coples and Muhammad Wilkerson for years to come.
Coples is tied with Wilkerson for the team lead with four sacks, and is the Jets' leader with eight tackles for loss and nine QB hits. We hear that his performance on the practice field is much improved, which is noteworthy considering that a lack of effort was a knock on Coples coming out of college.
“This is going to be a guy that’s going to be obviously a huge part of what we do in the future,” Rex Ryan told reporters Thursday. “And I think it’s rare to get a guy with his kind of height, weight, speed.” Ryan went on to say that Coples is a “different player on the practice field now.”
One area of improvement the club wants to see out of Coples is his run defense, and Ryan said that Coples’ technique against the run can get better. A daily team observer said that he can “see the flashes” of the rookie often, and Ryan has apparently had the expected effect on Coples in getting the most out of a player whose raw tools are hard to ignore.