New York Jets rookie quarterback Geno Smith made quite the impression on many people by leading the Jets to a minor upset over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday, and he looked like a QB with the promise of being a franchise player. His debut can definitely be considered a success, and there should be little question that Mark Sanchez has lost his job. Smith was able to show what he could do when healthy, and his ability to run and pass effectively was certainly a plus. Bill Belichick praised Smith at today’s walkthrough, but it was Smith who did most of the praising. During a press conference yesterday, Geno Smith absolutely gushed with praise for the New England Patriots defense, and I’m sure that has earned favor for Patriots fans.
“Well, they are a very well coached defense. They obviously present mismatches for anybody, so it’s going to be tough for us. We just have to continue to stay smart. They are, like I said, a very well coached defense. Up front they are very strong. They have [Rob] Ninkovich, who is one of the smartest players I have seen on tape. He constantly makes plays; he is always around the ball.Vince Wilfork, I mean his name speaks for itself and he can be a guy who can change the game at any moment. They have Chandler [Jones] who is one of the up-and-coming defensive ends/outside linebackers in the league. He presents mismatches for tackles and he is constantly around the ball making plays, constantly getting to the quarterback. The linebackers, led by [Jerod] Mayo, and they have [Brandon] Spikes; [Dont’a] Hightower from Alabama. All of those guys, they run well, they hit, they come downhill hard and they can stop an offense. Their back end I think is pretty strong. They have Alfonzo Dennard, they have Aqib Talib, who they got last year. Then you move in [Devin] McCourty the safety and they picked up [Steve] Gregory from the Chargers, so all of those guys are veterans. They know the game, they’ve been around for a while now and I think they play well together. They are definitely going to present some challenges for us, but we are going to prepare as we always do and I think we will be ready for it.”
Who said rivals don’t exchange friendly words? Smith named off a lot of players on this defense, and he is aware that the Patriots actually have a quality secondary now. I always like it when opposing offensive players give props to Alfonzo Dennard, who has been the best cornerback on the Patriots since Devin McCourty left the position. Aqib Talib is the more talented player and is technically better, but Dennard has played better.