This week’s Heavy on Jets official top-five preseason risers and fallers were delayed because of the cutdown but after revealing the big winners versus the Atlanta Falcons on August 23, we have the bubble candidates that saw their stock drop the most today.
Wanted to first point out that none of the initial selections ended up being released on Tuesday but in case you missed it, those players were:
- Kicker Eddy Pineiro.
- Safety Elijah Riley.
- Linebacker Kai Nacua.
- Offensive lineman Caleb Benenoch.
- Offensive lineman Isaiah Williams.
ALL the latest Jets news straight to your inbox! Join the Heavy on Jets newsletter here!
Fans Calling for Top Faller to Be Cut in 2022
The top “faller” from the Falcons game was easily safety Ashtyn Davis. Not only did he struggle with zone coverage once again — 57.2 coverage grade on Pro Football Focus — but the 2020 third-round selection also looked lost in this scheme.
To make matters worse, veteran Will Parks thrived in it as one of the big winners of the week. The combination of the coinciding events caused an eruption amongst fans on social media after The Athletic’s Zack Rosenblatt pointed out that Davis and Parks should be in direct competition for a job.
“Will Parks over Ashtyn Davis easily. Not even close either…” one fan voiced. Another commented that “there’s a shocking lack of Ashtyn Davis on here,” after the Jets announced their cuts. The most popular tweet came from The Buffalo Jet Fan, however, who stated: “If Ashtyn Davis makes the team over Will Parks we riot.”
Fellow safety, Riley, was waived as the front office skimmed a crowded position down to Jordan Whitehead, Lamarcus Joyner, Jason Pinnock, Parks, Davis, and undrafted rookie Tony Adams. Expect at least two more cuts before the final deadline.
Follow the Heavy On Jets Facebook page, where you can weigh in on all the latest NYJ-related daily content, analysis, features and more!
4 Remaining Losers vs. Falcons
2. Mike White, quarterback.
For the second-straight week, White finds himself on the negative stock report. The third-string QB managed to play even worse against Atlanta, generating zero offensive movement before the final drive of the first half.
He finished with a respectable 70.6% completion percentage, but only 5.3 yards per attempt with a weak 6.8-yard average depth of target. The run game didn’t help White but neither did his accuracy, missing high and short on potential conversions.
At halftime, head coach Robert Saleh told the sideline reporter that White’s high throw on a Jeff Smith route could have gone for a touchdown if the quarterback had hit him in stride. Yep, it was that kind of game for the 2021 cult hero that now finds himself being replaced by newcomer Chris Streveler.
3. Trevon Wesco, tight end.
To some extent, you might include Kenny Yeboah in this too because of Lawrence Cager’s continued emergence — although the second-year prospect played decently. Wesco downright struggled outside of one seven-yard gain in the flats.
If Wesco were to make the roster as the fourth tight end, it would be because of three strengths — his run-blocking, special teams impact and veteran experience. All three of those areas faltered against Atlanta.
Wesco’s blocking grade was good (85.7) but he was called for a key holding during the first half. His special teams grade from PFF — a 58.4 — was much less appealing. Finally, the discipline you’d expect from a vet was not there, with a second crucial penalty later on.
4. Nathan Shepherd, defensive tackle.
It wasn’t necessarily that Shepherd was so bad against the Falcons — although he did get manhandled by blockers at the point of attack on one red zone run from Tyler Allgeier — it was that his number one competitor killed it.
Second-year DT Jonathan Marshall and Shepherd have been talked about as a head-to-head camp battle this summer and the youngster had a huge night with a sack and two tackles for a loss. In all fairness, Shep was credited with one quarterback pressure and two defensive stops in the outing but his time with the Jets could finally come to a close either way.
5. Walking Wounded – Bryce Huff, Marcell Harris & Vinny Curry
Three bubble candidates missed the Falcons game altogether, and that’s never good for your chances. Huff and Curry — two defensive ends fighting for the same role as the last man on the edge — are also contending with the continually impressive Jabari Zuniga, as well as big-time riser Bradlee Anae.
Huff and Curry both picked up injuries around the same time and their statuses for this week’s joint practices with the Giants are unclear. The latter is a likely cut, being that he’s barely played all summer after a year on the pine. Huff is still a favorite to make the roster, however, the Jets love his potential if he can just stay healthy for once.
As for Harris, the veteran linebacker was on the rise after a good effort in Philly. He’ll likely go head-to-head with second-year prospect Hamsah Nasirildeen for the final LB and special teams role, but his one-to-two-week hamstring absence could hand the job to the youngster.
P.S. Nasirildeen was much improved versus the Falcons with three total tackles on defense and special teams combined, plus a coverage grade of 67.9.
Follow @obermuller_nyj and @BoyGreen25 on Twitter for all the latest New York Jets breaking news, rumors, fresh takes and more!