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Bell Out with a Hamstring Injury, Is He Considered a “Bust” for the Jets?

When the New York Jets came to terms with former Steelers running back Le’Veon Bell, many Jet fans using were betting that the team finally had its running back of the future.

Instead, here we sit one game into Bell’s second season, and not only has he not been the feature back that many felt he would, he’s now injured and was placed on injured reserve.

Bell went down in a week one loss at Buffalo to the Bills, but was highly ineffective before the injury took place.

The back didn’t play in the second half, and on Tuesday the club announced that he was going on injured reserve with a hamstring pull.

To take the place of Bell on the roster, the Jets signed former Miami Dolphins running back Kalen Ballage.

There’s a bit of excitement about Ballage, as the club tried to acquire Ballage in a trade last month, but the deal was voided when he failed a physical because of a hamstring injury. He became a free agent.

Now before you think that Bell isn’t going to be back at all in 2020, think again. Under the new IR rules, Bell will be forced to sit at least three games, meaning he will be eligible to play in Week 5 against the Arizona Cardinals.

It was supposed to be an offseason of change for Bell and the Jets, as the running back spent a lot of time working on his weight, coming into camp at 210 pounds, which he says is his lightest weight since playing in high school.

He also said that he felt he would be a much better back, and that the poor showing and numbers from 2019 can be put in the trash.

Jets coach Adam Gase went back and forth about how long Bell would be out for, but the coach seems to be having a better time being more careful about what he says after Bell called out Gase on Twitter after being removed from a scrimmage, and the two had to sit down and have a long chat about their relationship.

Now is a time for the Jets to see if any of these other backs on the roster can get it done. If so, rushing Bell back won’t be such a big deal.

If the run game continues to falter, the club very well may race Bell back out there for week five when he’s able to return back to the roster against the Cardinals.

Jets at Bills Wednesday NFL Week One Injury Report

Practice Report
  Wednesday RB La’Mical Perine (ankle)
  Wednesday LB Tarell Basham (ankle), QB Joe Flacco (neck), G Alex Lewis (shoulder), S Marcus Maye (calf), LB Avery Williamson (hamstring)
  Wednesday WR Jamison Crowder (hamstring), WR Denzel Mims (hamstring), WR Breshad Perriman (knee)
Practice Report
  Wednesday CB Josh Norman (hamstring)
  Wednesday DT Vernon Butler (hamstring), QB Jake Fromm (not injury related), RB Taiwan Jones (knee)
  Wednesday CB Levi Wallace (hamstring)

Le’Veon Bell Claims He and Coach Adam Gase on Good Terms

Le’Veon Bell and Adam Gase talked about practice, Adam Maya of reports.

The two Jets say they’re better for it, after a breakdown in communication led to a brief and unwanted break from the action for Bell.

The Jets running back told reporters Thursday he spoke to Gase last week about the “hamstring incident,” which involved Bell being pulled from practice and then firing off a series of tweets (e.g. here, here and here) in protest.

Le’Veon Bell struggling in New York Jets training camp?

Bell acknowledges he did experience hamstring tightness but believed he could continue practicing, chalking up his removal to “miscommunication.” Gase intimated at the time he was being cautious but understood Bell isn’t a fan of missing practice. New York’s RB1 reiterated he and his coach are still fans of one another.

“I know how hard it is to believe that, but we actually like each other,” Bell said.

Is Jets OT Mekhi Becton Ready for a Breakout 2020?

As the Jets get set for what should be an odd 2020 season, there’s one player on their roster that could be due for a big season, that being offensive tackle Mekhi Becton. today has a piece out with breakout stars from around the NFL, and Becton is right at the top of the list.

Here’s what Judy Battista had to say about the tackle:

Let’s talk about rookies now — and I have who I think will be one of the most impactful rookies here in New York, blotting out the sun: the massive (6-7, 370 pounds!) Jets offensive tackle Mekhi Becton. On the first day in pads at Florham Park, Becton was at left tackle with the starters and the Jets badly need him to anchor that spot immediately. Upgrading a terrible offensive line was the priority for general manager Joe Douglas, for the sake of quarterback Sam Darnold, who was relentlessly pressured last season and, according to Next Gen Stats, struggled badly in those situations, having the lowest passer rating in the league against the blitz.

Running back Le’Veon Bell, who had a miserable season in 2019, will benefit from Becton’s shockingly good movement, too. On one play at practice, Becton came off the ball at the snap, quickly got to the second level of the defense and smashed into a middle linebacker.

Sports talk radio in New York is probably going to spend a lot of time talking about the weapons (or lack thereof) the Jets have for Darnold, but I expect you won’t hear Becton’s name very often, which is exactly how you like offensive linemen.

New Jets QB Joe Flacco Won’t Be Ready for Week One

The Jets may have to wait to see if Joe Flacco can be a solid backup to Sam Darnold.

The newly signed Jets QB will not be ready for the regular season according to ESPN, as he continues to recover from offseason neck surgery.

“I can’t speak to exactly when I’m going to be ready, but it will not be day one,” Flacco said Tuesday in an interview with SiriusXM NFL radio.

“Obviously, we’ll get with the doctors and I have another checkup come August, so we’ll see where that goes.”

Flacco inked a one-year deal with the Jets worth $1.5 million. The report said the Jets were well aware that Flacco would not be ready for opening day against the Bills.

“First and foremost, I want to help the team in any way possible and also be a guy Sam can lean on, that he can learn from,” Flacco said.

“I would say those are the two most important things: Help out the guys on the team and help out Sam to do all they can.

Jets Rookie Mekhi Becton Getting Acclimated to Life in the NFL

Mekhi Becton’s first month in the NFL has been nothing like he could’ve ever expected, Chris Iseman of reports.

With players and coaches scattered around the country because of the coronavirus pandemic, Becton has been participating in virtual meetings, learning the playbook and texting some of his new teammates.

But that’s the extent of what he’s been able to do with the New York Jets.

“It’s definitely been weird because I can’t go on the field and physically walk through the plays so I can get a better understanding of them,” Becton said on a Zoom call with reporters Monday. “That would be the only weird aspect of it.”

Drafted 11th overall out of Louisville in April, Becton could be tasked with protecting quarterback Sam Darnold’s blind side as the left tackle, a role the Jets hope Becton could hold for many years.

A rare combination of size and athleticism, the 6-foot-7, 364-pound Becton says he has two goals for his rookie season.

“I want to start as a rookie and I want to make the playoffs,” Becton said.

Becton, who said he has told general manager Joe Douglas that he would like to wear No. 77 because he wants to try something new, has a strong chance at landing a starting job at either left or right tackle as a rookie.

His other goal of making the playoffs could be tougher to accomplish, but he could play a big role in eventually helping to make that happen.

He and Darnold recently exchanged texts, and he’s also been in contact with running back Le’Veon Bell, who told him to “lock his (phone) number in.”

Becton still has to wait to better get to know his new teammates in person.

“Right now we’ve just been doing a lot of virtual meetings,” Becton said. “I’ve been seeing their faces but I haven’t talked to any of the vets yet. I haven’t gotten to know them personally. We’ve just been doing meetings. The rookies have been doing side meetings on their own with the vets. I’ve just been studying and doing extra studying with the playbook. That’s what I’ve been getting from it.”

Jets Close to Adding Former Pats and Titans DB Logan Ryan

The Jets believe they will land former Patriots and Titans defensive back Logan Ryan on a one-year deal, Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News reports.

Ryan, a two-time Super Bowl champion with the Patriots, would provide a versatile piece for defensive coordinator Gregg Williams. Ryan, 29, is coming off his best season with 18 passes defensed (third most in the NFL), 4 ½ sacks, four interceptions, eight quarterback hits and 113 tackles in Tennessee.

Jets 2020 Schedule Released, Team to Open on the Road in Buffalo

The Jets will open the 2020 season on the road against the rival Bills before coming home for their home opener the next week against the NFC Champion 49ers.

The team will play the NFC West this season, meaning the Seahawks, Rams, Niners and Cardinals. Here’s the complete 2020 slate.

Week 1 (Sunday, September 13): @ Buffalo Bills

Week 2 (Sunday, September 20): San Francisco 49ers

Week 3 (Sunday, September 27): @ Indianapolis Colts

Week 4 (Thursday, October 1): Denver Broncos

Week 5 (Sunday, October 11): Arizona Cardinals

Week 6 (Sunday, October 18): @ Los Angeles Chargers

Week 7 (Sunday, October 25): Buffalo Bills

Week 8 (Sunday, November 1): @ Kansas City Chiefs

Week 9 (Monday, November 9): New England Patriots

Week 10 (Sunday, November 15): @ Miami Dolphins

Week 11 Bye Week

Week 12 (Sunday, November 29): Miami Dolphins

Week 13 (Sunday, December 6): Las Vegas Raiders

Week 14 (Sunday, December 13): @ Seattle Seahawks

Week 15 (Saturday, December 19/Sunday, December 20): @ Los Angeles Rams

Week 16 (Saturday, December 26/Sunday, December 27): Cleveland Browns

Week 17(Sunday, January 3): @ New England Patriots