The name of Jets linebacker Lorenzo Mauldin has been in the news several times recently, for the wrong reasons. Hall of Famer Kevin Greene hopes to get Mauldin’s name into the news for the right reasons.
Greene has been working with the Jets defensive players to get more heat on the quarterback.
“I was a finesse player,” Mauldin said recently, via Darryl Slater of NJ.com. “I think I’m going to throw that into the trash can this year. I think I’m going to go with more power this year.”
That’s exactly what Greene wants from a former third-round pick whose sack production dropped from four in 2015 to 2.5 in 2016.
“Everybody at this level has skill, correct?” Greene said, per Slater. “They’re all athletic, and agility and dexterity and all that stuff. Well, what separates people initially is their physical level of play. That’s always our first step, is we have to play more physical than whoever is in front of us, because we’re all athletic. . . . It’s based on physicality. It’s based on drive and desire.”
The Jets continue to wait for Mauldin to become a force as a pass rusher. Greene thinks that Mauldin is still overwhelmed by the relative complexity of the pro game.
“It’s the hardest thing to do, going from a three-point stance up into a staggered, two-point stance,” Greene said. “And now expanding your vision [to locate receivers who may need to be covered] and understanding how that can change your job, depending on formation, motion, or any number of factors. So that’s where the growing pain comes.”
Having great players around Mauldin helps, too. Despite the recent exodus of veteran talent, the Jets still have Muhammad Wilkerson, Sheldon Richardson, and Leonard Williams, which could make it easier for Mauldin to find favorable matchups when he pins his proverbial ears back and chases the passer.