The New York Jets have scheduled two separate sets of joint practices during training camp in 2022.
For two days they’ll be matching up with the Atlanta Falcons ahead of their Week 2 matchup on Monday Night Football in the preseason. Additionally Gang Green will square off with the New York Giants ahead of the preseason finale for several joint practices.
This is the first opportunity the Jets have had at squaring off against a team of a different jersey color in practice. Understandably and somewhat predictably several skirmishes broke out.
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Put Your Dukes Up
Zack Rosenblatt of The Athletic did a really good job documenting all of the scuffles throughout practice.
“Finally, Jets defensive end Bradlee Anae wound up at the Falcons sideline after a play and started throwing haymakers at Atlanta players — as in, more than one. Both teams had to be separated, and the drill was halted with eight minutes left on the clock as each team gathered its players to calm things down.”
Anae ruffled the most feathers and it led D. Orlando Ledbetter, a Falcons media member, to suggest the former Utah product should be tossed from practice with how he was “swinging on folks.”
Head coach Robert Saleh said a few weeks ago that he only has one rule when it comes to training camp fights. No punches.
You can push and shove all you like, but as soon as punches are thrown that is when things can spin out of control.
It gets hot out there during the summer and another team presents new bodies to go up against. However, despite all the fighting that took place both coaches said after practice that they got some good work in.
A Tough Path to a Roster Spot
Speaking of Anae, he is an incredibly talented football player that perhaps in another life would have a viable path to a 53-man roster spot.
Unfortunately, the deepest positional group on the Jets is arguably their defensive line.
The 24-year-old initially entered the league as the No. 179 overall pick in the fifth round of the 2020 NFL draft. He would spend the next two seasons on the Dallas Cowboys before his contract ultimately expired.
In January the Jets decided to kick the tires on him by signing him to a reserve/future contract and he has been on the team ever since.
It was and is a worthwhile gamble because dating all the way back to his college days Anae has exponentially gotten better each year.
During his time with Utah, Anae kept increasing his stats on a year-to-year basis on the defensive side of the football:
- 29.5 sacks
- Five forced fumbles
- 40 tackles for loss
- Over 131 total tackles accumulated
Anae has a really good chance at a practice squad spot, but if he wants to make the final 53 he will have to do something to stand out in these final two preseason games that doesn’t include getting into fights.