Practice report: Geno throws first INT
August, 6, 2013
By Rich Cimini | ESPNNewYork.com
CORTLAND, N.Y. -- The streak is over.
Working with the backups for the second straight day, per the quarterback rotation, rookie Geno Smith threw his first interception Tuesday in team drills. Previously, he had three interceptions in 7-on-7 drills, including two Monday, but this was his first in an 11-on-11 situation.
Smith, under pressure, heaved a long pass down the right sideline. It didn't come close to the intended receiver, and CB Ellis Lankster was there to make the pick. It came on his 79th pass attempt of training camp.
It wasn't a good day for Smith, who completed only two of five passes (no sacks) in team drills. Is he fading after a hot start?
One day after saying he might change the plan to give Smith the first-team reps, Rex Ryan decided to stick with the script. So Mark Sanchez was with the starters again as the ballyhooed quarterback competition rolled on.
They've been alternating since the start of camp. Based on that, Smith would be up Wednesday and Friday for the preseason opener. There's no practice Thursday. We'll see how Ryan plays it.
Sanchez capitalized on his opportunity, enjoying his second straight sharp practice. He was 4-for-6, with no sacks, fitting a couple of passes into tight windows. He made a terrific throw to TE Kellen Winslow on a seam route. Lankster had tight coverage on the play. Sanchez also made some pretty long throws in the one-on-one drill, receivers vs. defensive backs.
ELLIS ISLAND: It was a good day for Lankster, who had been having an up and down camp. Aside from the interception, he made a diving pass break up on a sideline route. Ryan has said he likes his cornerback depth. It'll be even better if Lankster emerges as a consistent player in the sub packages.
BE PREPARED: Much of the team period was devoted to situational-type stuff, including the four-minute offense and the victory formation. The latter begs the question: If they run the victory formation against the Bucs in the opener, will Greg Schiano call an all-out blitz? They also practiced the Hail Mary.
INJURED RECEIVER: WR Vidal Hazelton, who caught a 70-yard touchdown pass in Saturday night's scrimmage, went down with a possible knee injury. He got tangled up with a cornerback in a one-on-one drill and needed to be helped off the field. On the first day of camp, a one-on-one drill claimed CB Aaron Berry, who tore a knee ligament.
THAT DIDN'T TAKE LONG: It appears that rookie CB Dee Milliner has supplanted Kyle Wilson in the starting base, as he took the first snaps in the team period. The team's first official depth chart, released Monday, lists Milliner and Antonio Cromartie as the starting corners.
ATTENDANCE REPORT: Winslow returned to practice after three days rest. ... RB Chris Ivory (hamstring) and RB Joe McKnight (head) remained on the sideline. ... WR Braylon Edwards, whose reps are being limited, didn't practice. ... LB Josh Mauga (back) sat out.
BOSS IS HERE: Owner Woody Johnson watched practice from the sideline, spending much of time talking with GM John Idzik.
ODDS AND ENDS: Smith had the ball slapped out of his hands in a ball-security drill. Remember, he struggled with fumbles at West Virginia. ... Rookie WR Ryan Spadola, an undrafted free agent from Howell, N.J., got some reps with the first team. He has a chance to make the team; the first preseason game will be vital for him. ... QB Greg McElroy dropped a shotgun snap and was sacked. He finished on a high note, hitting WR Joseph Collins for a touchdown. ... S Antonio Allen was flagged for pass interference on Winslow.