AFC Notes: Jets, Patriots, Ravens

     

Jets

There’s a lot that has gone wrong around Jets QB Sam Darnold in his first two years, from injuries to a weak supporting cast. But the great quarterbacks can often make up for other weaknesses on their team and the Jets are hopeful Darnold will take another step toward reaching the potential they believe he has by doing that this year. 

“The show must go on, and I’m expecting them to have a much better year,” former Jets RB Curtis Martin said via ESPN’s Rich Cimini. “One of the keys is when you have a quarterback who’s starting to become more seasoned, just learning more and having more time with his offensive line and the receivers. I’m expecting Sam to have a good year, and I think that’s going to help the team in a significant way. I’m looking for Sam to have a big year, to have his best year this year.”

  • Cimini notes the Jets were quiet about OLB Bryce Huff this offseason and carried him on their final roster because they were afraid he’d be poached by another team. 

Patriots

  • ESPN’s Mike Reiss says Patriots FB Danny Vitale might have had a hard time beating out FB Jakob Johnson for a roster spot even before he opted out. 
  • He adds TE Matt LaCosse‘s decision to opt out freed up a roster spot for TE Ryan Izzo.
  • With how wide open New England’s receiving corps was this year, Reiss also thinks WR Marqise Lee could have won a roster spot had he not opted out. 

Ravens

  • According to CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora, the Ravens were close to pulling off a similar deal to what the Vikings eventually did for DE Yannick Ngakoue, sending a second-round pick and have Ngakoue take a pay cut to bring him in. 
  • However, the situation with S Earl Thomas clouded the team’s salary cap situation given how much of his previously guaranteed salary was tied up in a grievance. 
  • La Canfora adds he would not be surprised to see the Ravens be active at the trade deadline this year. 
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