In an occasional feature, we're going to briefly highlight any of the lesser-known players that make an unexpected impact during camp or in the season. Today, we focus on defensive back Elijah Campbell:
What he did:
Campbell showcased his playmaking ability during team drills at yesterday's practice at Metlife Stadium:
Elijah Campbell caused a fumble that Blake Cashman returned for a TD. #Jets— Dennis Waszak Jr. (@DWAZ73) August 7, 2021
This comes after Robert Saleh had singled him out as someone not to overlook when considering the slot cornerback position, interrupting a reporter to say "you can throw Elijah Campbell in there too. That nickel spot, very excited about that group, its a very good group."
Campbell went undrafted and was released by the Browns in final cuts in 2018 and then played in the AAF and XFL as he tried to make it back to the NFL. He finally did last year with the Jets as he signed to their practice squad and was activated for three late-season games.
With the Jets not having done much to retool their secondary since then, Campbell might have a shot at making the roster.
He's athletic, with 4.4 speed and a 39-inch vertical leap but lacks size so the slot cornerback position makes sense for him. However, he also has experience of playing at safety and is a big hitter who could make an impact on special teams.
Javelin Guidry - who intercepted a Zach Wilson pass during yesterday's scrimmage - and rookie Deuce Carter, an obvious favorite of the coaching staff, are the main two contenders for the starting nickel role. However, Campbell shouldn't be ruled out in the race to make the roster and is probably a good candidate to go on the practice squad if he doesn't.
More on Campbell:
Here's the in-depth scouting report on Campbell.