Jets kickoff unit altering approach to allow returns

Nick Folk won't be booting it quite as far Saturday night against the Giants. Credit: Getty Images
Nick Folk won’t be booting it quite as far Saturday night against the Giants.
Credit: Getty Images

On Saturday night, the Jets are hoping to have return yards against them.

No, that’s not a misprint. The Jets’ special teams coaching staff wants their kickers to boot the ball shorter.

In the season-opening preseason game, the Lions didn’t have a single kickoff return against the Jets. The Jets had eight kickoffs but only had four returns in the win last weekend over Jacksonville. Even more remarkable, the first-team kickoff unit hasn’t had a single return against them yet this preseason. That’s good news for the Jets in that they are limiting return yards and minimizing the chance for big plays. But it is unreasonable to think their kickers will be able to keep up this pace throughout the season.

So the kickers will be asked to kick the ball shorter so the coaching staff can evaluate the talent on the unit.

“By design, they want those guys to cover and they told us to put it at the goal line, with hang time in the direction we’re trying to go,” kicker Nick Folk said. “It’s for them to get used to covering, because our ones (starters) haven’t had any returns. They want them to get some reps, some game-speed stuff. You don’t want them lulled to sleep.

“They want to evaluate those guys on film. It’s hard to simulate that [in practice] because you don’t want to go ones versus ones here, so you want to do it in a game.”

Rather than a typical 10-yard kickoff approach, both Folk and fellow kicker Billy Cundiff will shorten their approach to five yards. Nothing about the kicking form is different; it is just backing off the distance.

Folk has been practicing the approach this week to make sure that on Saturday night against the Giants, there will be return yards against the unit.

“You’re kind of pulling out a 5-iron instead of a driver if you want to call it that,” Folk said. “You’re just not bringing the speed into it as much. For me, I’m not bringing in the same speed I would when I’m back for my normal approach. I am slowed so I don’t have the same speed and the ball isn’t going to go as far. It’s pretty much the same kick, just a shorter approach.”

Follow Jets beat writer Kristian Dyer on Twitter @KristianRDyer.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Brooklyn man charged in roommate's stabbing death

A Brooklyn man accused of violently stabbing his roommate to death on Monday is in police custody and faces murder charges.

International

Dinosaurs could have survived asteroid strike

It turns out there is a good and a bad time for the planet to be hit by a meteor, and dinosaurs were just unlucky.…

National

OkCupid admits to Facebook-style experimenting on customers

By Sarah McBrideSAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - OkCupid, a top U.S. matchmaking website, intentionally mismatched users to test its technology, the IAC/InterActive Corp service said on…

Local

MTA fares still increasing 4 percent in newly…

The agency said the 4 percent increases, previously announced in December, will remain steady even as the MTA deals with increasing labor costs.

Movies

Interview: Brendan Gleeson on the way 'Calvary' depicts…

Brendan Gleeson talks about how his new film "Calvary" began over drinks and how his character here is the opposite of the lead in "The Guard."

Movies

'Get on Up' producer Mick Jagger on the…

Mick Jagger, a producer on the James Brown biopic "Get on Up," talks about the time had to tell the singer some bad news and his favorite JB record.

Television

'Glee' star Lea Michele to appear on 'Sons…

"Glee" star Lea Michele has been confirmed as a guest star in the final season of "Sons of Anarchy."

Television

TV watch list, Monday, July 28: 'The Bachelorette'…

See Andi Dorfman make her big choice on tonight's 'Bachelorette' finale.

MLB

Angelo Cataldi: Ryan Howard deserves better from Phillies

Just last week, Ryan Howard endured the embarrassment of a benching that was inevitable, and yet still shocking.

NFL

Larry Donnell has inside track in Giants tight…

Little-known Larry Donnell of Grambling State currently has the inside track, as the second-year player has received the bulk of the first-team reps.

NFL

Computer to Jets: Start Michael Vick over Geno…

Jets general manager John Idzik says the choice of who starts between second-year quarterback Geno Smith and veteran Michael Vick will be a “Jets decision.”

MLB

Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.

Travel

Glasgow: Hey, hey, the gangs aren't here

This European city has done a good job getting rid of its more violent residents and revitalizing with artists.

Education

Babson College tops list of best colleges for…

Money magazine has just released its inaugural list of "The Best Colleges for Your Money" -- and the answers have surprised many. Babson College, which…

Education

NYC teens learn how to develop apps during…

Through a program sponsored by CampInteractive, the high schoolers designed their own community-focused apps.

Tech

The Ministry of Silly Walks app is both…

Monty Python have dug into their back catalogue for cash-ins once more, but with the Ministry of Silly Walks app, they've made something that's fun too.