New York Jets head coach Rex Ryan believes that he has a top NFL defense without the presence of a shutdown cornerback.
Ryan didn’t need to make those claims when he had former All-Pro Darrelle Revis eliminating one side of the field for the better part of the six seasons he was with the team.
The Jets are getting thin at the position with Dee Milliner out for several weeks with an ankle injury and rookie Dexter McDougle tearing an ACL.
"I never said I had to have the best corner in football," Ryan said, via NJ.com. "That's not it. My defenses work, period. I don't care what it is. We take what we have, and then we work around it.”
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The Jets finished 11th in total defense last year, and 21st in passing defense, giving up 7.1 yards per passing attempt.
During Monday's practice, safety Antonio Allen was playing cornerback with the first-team defense. On the other corner was Darrin Walls, who made 21 total tackles while playing in all 16 games last season.
“We're not a team that tries to stick a square peg in a round hole,” Ryan said. “We'll take what we have and we'll make it work."
Jets can't win Vick-Geno debate
On Monday's SI Now, The MMQB senior writer Greg Bedard and SI NFL writer Chris Burke discuss the fact that the Jets need to commit to either Geno Smith or Michael Vick so the team can adapt to whoever will be starting.
- Scooby Axson