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Jets' Michael Carter Is Striving For Greatness in Sophomore Season

Carter is one of the many weapons at Zach Wilson's disposal this year, a threat to break out for a big play whenever the ball is in his hands.
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Leading up to the final game of his rookie season last year, Jets running back Michael Carter disclosed his ultimate aspiration.

"I'm working everyday to be the best in the league," he said. "That is my ultimate goal, to be the best in the league."

Even after New York went out and drafted another running back this offseason—second-rounder Breece Hall is likely to receive the bulk of New York's carries in 2022—Carter's priorities haven't changed.

Speaking to reporters for the first time since the beginning of training camp this week, the UNC product and former fourth-round pick referenced Jets legend Curtis Martin and how he turned reps in practice into a Hall of Fame career.

It was Martin's ability to be consistent every time he stepped on the field that paved his way to greatness, Carter said. That's what this second-year running back wants to emulate going forward in green and white. 

"Him and Emmitt Smith are probably the best examples of consistency," Carter explained. "For me, what I want to be in life is to be one of the best. The main thing to improve on is my consistency."

Carter led the Jets with 964 yards from scrimmage last year, racking up a team-best 639 rushing yards on 147 carries. He flashed greatness when it came to breaking tackles and making defenders miss in space. 

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Replicating Martin's career—14,101 rushing yards over 11 seasons—is a challenge for any young back to accomplish, let alone Carter. Plus, with Hall entering the fray this year, it may be tough for Carter to get a boatload carries each week, barring an injury or change on the depth chart.

Asked about his relationship with Hall so far this year, a topic to follow all season, Carter assured that everything is going well thus far.

"He asks a lot of questions which is something I can really appreciate. When I came in, I did the same thing," he said, joking that veteran Tevin Coleman must be tired of him. "It's only right that I do that with him, right? We're just passing that on, that's the culture we're trying to build."

Beyond giving his new teammate advice, Carter isn't concerning himself with his official role in the running back room. He's eager to take advantage of opportunities and get better each day, regardless of how many snaps he'll get on Sundays. 

"I feel like I just need to work on me," he explained. "I'm focused on myself and bringing the other guys along with me. My goal is to be the best so however I can help, I'm going to help, but at the same time, I can't forget about my life, too."


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