Even by the NFL’s harsh standards, Josh McCown’s long tosses to plastic receivers at New York Jets camp could undeniably be called touchdowns.
The incumbent Jets starter recently showcased his accuracy, taking to the practice field at Atlantic Health Jets Training Center to fire some touchdown passes to trash can receivers stationed about 35-40 yards away. Even by the NFL’s shocking standards, it was hard to dispute the evidence of a “catch”.
“It’s hard to ask WRs to run deep over and over, especially on a hot day like this. We use buckets to get a feel for the distance, arm speed & trajectory of the throw.” pic.twitter.com/SrRllo8dPN
— New York Jets (@nyjets) August 6, 2018
Accuracy was no problem at all for McCown last season. Starting 13 games, tying a career-high, McCown set a personal best with a 67.3 completion percentage, ranking fourth in the league among qualifying passers. That quality was noticed by New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick prior to the teams’ October showdown last season.
“You see him throwing the ball accurately and you see him athletically getting out of some trouble,” Belichick said, according to Phil Perry of NBC Sports Boston. “He manages the team well. He’s good in close games at the end of the game, critical situations. I mean, there’s a lot to like about the guy.”
With the Jets set to open their preseason slate on Friday against Atlanta (7:30 p.m., WCBS) questions have risen about how much time McCown will see in the exhibitions, throwing 12 passes total over the summer quartet last season. More reps were given to since-departed youngsters Christian Hackenberg and Bryce Petty, and it’s expected the trend will continue with Darnold and Teddy Bridgewater getting extended exposure.
According to Newsday’s Al Iannazzone, however, McCown isn’t too worried about it.
“We understand the situation,” McCown said. “This is my 17th training camp. I’ve done this for a while. We have a lot invested in the other two guys as far as them learning the offense and getting comfortable with things. It’s good for our team for those guys to get as much work as they can.”