In-Depth Analysis - Eagles at Jets (Special Teams)

In a game like this, you overlook special teams play at your peril. Remember, guys like the 7th and 8th defensive back or the 5th wide receiver probably won't get many reps on offense or defense so superior special teams performance carries more weight at those spots. Todd Bowles did already say that there will be players on the roster primarily for a special teams-only role.

Kicking game - Ross or Chandler?

Who the kicker is going to be still seems to be a toss-up between Chandler Catanzaro and Ross Martin. Catazaro worked in the first half, making his only field goal, while Martin made both of his attempts, albeit both on chip shots, in the second half.

It has to be a good sign for Martin that the Jets signed his former collegiate long snapper Thomas Hennessy and Hennessy got all of the long snap workload in this game. Hennessy was also around the ball a few times in coverage, which the incumbent Tanner Purdum rarely is.

Punter Lachlan Edwards had a pretty good day but it's been another underwhelming preseason from him on the whole. He got a lucky bounce on one punt and had a couple of diagonal kicks where it's difficult to tell whether the ball landed out of the return man's reach by luck or by design.

Return game - Many Crappy Returns

Speaking of underwhelming, the Jets basically got nothing out of their return game this week.

Romar Morris and Jahad Thomas combined for zero punt return yards on three returns and each had a kick-off return stuffed inside the 25.

Morris lost yards trying to go across the field and Thomas was flagged for a personal foul. Neither did anything to grab this job which is probably now most likely to be given to a waiver wire pick-up, at least until Jalin Marshall (who didn't get any preseason return reps) is back. I guess they could also wait for Lucky Whitehead to recover from his injury too, but his return would be at around the same time as Marshall's based on the stated timescale.

Brent Qvale had one good block, but penalties by Freddie Bishop and Daniel Williams put the Jets inside their own 10-yard line to start drives.

Kick coverage - Let me be Frank

For the second straight week, Frank Beltre stood out on special teams. He was in on one tackle and showed impressive speed to be the first man down on one punt, although he missed the tackle on that one.

Shamarko Thomas also stood out for the second straight week. He got downfield well to redirect the return man on one return. Thomas also had a personal foul for going out of bounds on a punt though.

Terrence Brooks was brought on board partly due to his special teams ability and he showcased some of those skills this week. He made two tackles and was the first man downfield on another play where he couldn't make the tackle himself.

Also standing out were Bishop, Julian Stanford and Bruce Carter. Bishop was in on one tackle and had another play where he seemed to get a piece of the ball as the return man ran past him, almost causing a fumble. Stanford was in on two tackles but overpursued on another play and Carter tackled a kick-off returner at the 15.

On the whole, it seems likely the special teams units are going to struggle again. They've added some depth and talent to the coverage units and will get a boost once Rontez Miles returns, but there don't appear to be any difference makers in the return or kicking game.

That's it for the this week. If you'd like me to cover anything in more detail during the week, please let me know. Otherwise, we'll have a player spotlight for you later today.