New York Jets Coach Reveals Praise For Polarizing Wide Receiver

One member of the coaching staff is a big fan of a polarizing New York Jets receiver.
New York Jets wide receiver Allen Lazard (10) holds onto the ball before being taken down by Los Angeles Chargers cornerback Ja'Sir Taylor (36), in the fourth quarter, Monday, November 26, 2023.
New York Jets wide receiver Allen Lazard (10) holds onto the ball before being taken down by Los Angeles Chargers cornerback Ja'Sir Taylor (36), in the fourth quarter, Monday, November 26, 2023. / Kevin R. Wexler / USA TODAY NETWORK
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Last offseason, the New York Jets made a massive move to acquire Aaron Rodgers in a blockbuster trade with the Green Bay Packers. After making that move, they went on to bring in some of the superstar quarterbacks favorite players. One of those players was wide receiver Allen Lazard.

Lazard was a good, but not great, wide receiver during his time with the Packers. However, he has formed a very good friendship and chemistry with Rodgers.

In order to get Lazard, the Jets decided to give him a big four-year, $44 million contract in free agency. Unfortunately, year one did not go as planned.

During the 2023 season with New York, Lazard was basically a non-factor. He caught just 23 passes for 311 yards and one touchdown.

Clearly, those aren't the numbers that the Jets and their fans were expecting from the 28-year-old wide receiver. He didn't have Rodgers throwing him the ball, but he was unable to make the offense any better without an elite player under center.

Heading into the 2024 season, there has been a lot of speculation that New York could either trade or release Lazard. Despite those speculations and rumors, it seems that Lazard might be back for another year.

In a recent quote, Jets' wide receivers coach Shawn Jefferson showered praise on Lazard. Even with his horrible 2023 production, Lazard seems to be well liked within the organization.

"Since I’ve been here, he’s been like a second coach in the room. He’s been with [quarterback Aaron Rodgers] his whole career. He understands what Aaron wants on this route, where to be against cover 2 or against quarters. That can be a big-time advantage for him and also for us as a whole sharing that in the classroom."

Once again, it seems like Lazard may be saved by the presence of Rodgers and the chemistry he has formed with the superstar quarterback.

Back in 2022, Rodgers and Lazard's last year in Green Bay, the wideout was much more productive. He caught 60 passes for 788 yards and six touchdowns. Lazard caught eight touchdowns back in 2021.

Assuming New York does end up keeping Lazard, they'll be doing it because of his connection with Rodgers. It will be a gamble that he can get back to being productive with the 40-year-old quarterback back under center. Lazard and Rodgers have had plenty success together in the past.

All of that being said, it will be interesting to see what ends up happening with Lazard. He'll still have to prove himself in training camp and preseason action. If he can do that, he'll have one more opportunity in 2024 to prove that he can become a productive part of the Jets' offense.


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Evan Massey

EVAN MASSEY