Aaron Rodgers’ Understudy Could Be on Jets Radar After Stellar Preseason

Kurt Benkert Packers

Getty Green Bay Packers quarterback Kurt Benkert slicing and dicing the New York Jets defense.

The New York Jets embraced a new era the moment they ditched Adam Gase and brought in head coach Robert Saleh this offseason.

The two men likely couldn’t be more different and that goes well beyond the football field. One of Saleh’s beliefs is the benefits of joint practices and raising the level of competition in training camp.

That’s something Gase was never a fan of and something he never took part in during his tumultuous two-year tenure as the top dog. In Saleh’s first season as the leader of the clubhouse, he decided to hold two packages of joint practices with the Green Bay Packers and the Philadelphia Eagles ahead of their scheduled preseason games.

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Several Pros Involved in Joint Practice


Packers Preseason Game Review & Jets-Eagles Joint Practice Preview | The Official Jets Podcast | NFLFresh off the plane back from Green Bay, hosts Ethan Greenberg and Eric Allen look back on the week starting with the loss of Carl Lawson for the season (:40). The guys also answer the question, "Who starts at inside linebacker?" (7:30) and give a full rundown of Zach Wilson's week (9:15). Then they look…2021-08-23T19:15:37Z

There are several major benefits in participating in these joint practices.

During training camp you’re slamming pads with the same players and teammates, every day it becomes monotonous. Suddenly facing an NFL team of a different colored jersey is exciting and raises the level of intensity and competition.

It also serves as a proper measuring stick for your team heading into the regular season.

Although the most important factor that often goes under the radar is the unique transparency.

Normally NFL teams are super tight to the vest and rarely allow other teams to take a look inside their building. These joint practices are all about trust and there is so much connective tissue between the Jets and the Packers:

  • Mike LaFleur and Matt LaFleur
  • Robert Saleh and the LaFleur family

Those ties made scheduling this joint practice an absolutely easy decision. It also provides an opportunity for the Gang Green front office to evaluate the Packers roster and see who sticks out.

With NFL rosters being trimmed to 80 players on Tuesday, August 24, and a week later it going all the way down to 53, there’s going to be a lot of talent that suddenly becomes available.


Jets Could Have Some Interest in Adding New Talent


LaFleur: Kurt Benkert 'Did A Nice Job And Showed Good Command' Against JetsHead Coach Matt LaFleur spoke to the media following the Packers' loss to the New York Jets. Subscribe to the Packers YT Channel: bit.ly/32ff95H More Packers NFL Action: bit.ly/2OCyppK #GreenBayPackers #Packers #NFL Keep up-to-date on all things Packers: Visit packers.com/ Follow: twitter.com/packers Follow: instagram.com/packers/ Like: facebook.com/Packers/2021-08-22T01:00:31Z

With that in mind, the Jets got a great look at several Packers players that could be great fits with the Jets in 2021.

Rich Cimini of ESPN mentioned in his Sunday morning column, “don’t be surprised if a player or two from those teams [Packers, Eagles] winds up on” Gang Green.

Kurt Benkert, quarterback

The Jets need a backup quarterback.

Josh Johnson has been a veteran presence by the sheer definition but doesn’t look like he’ll make the final 53 man roster. Mike White and James Morgan have been uninspiring during their efforts throughout the summer.

Maybe it’s time to make a move? Benkert lit up the Jets during their preseason game going 18-of-25 for 151 yards and recording a touchdown pass.

Despite his impressive preseason, the Packers are pretty set in their plan with Aaron Rodgers as their starter and Jordan Love firmly as the No. 2. This doesn’t leave much room if any for Benkert to crash the party.

That’s where the Jets can come in and snag an intriguing player they can stash in the quarterback room.

Ben Braden, guard

The Jets have a ton of interior offensive line issues with Alex Lewis retiring, Cameron Clark’s injury, and a lack of depth in general. A Braden signing would be a green and white reunion for a player that spent the first two years of his career with the Jets.

Equanimeous St. Brown, wide receiver

Gang Green has too many wideouts. Despite that St. Brown brings size to a receiving corps that doesn’t have a weapon like this: 6-foot-5, 214 pounds. That size would be a nice addition to have on the roster if he shakes free.


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