ibusinesslines.com July 21, 2018

Christian Hackenberg gives Jets a ray of hope

13 August 2017, 06:37 | Charlene Valdez

Rookie receiver Ar Darius Stewart was one of fifteen different Jets players to catch a pass

Rookie receiver Ar Darius Stewart was one of fifteen different Jets players to catch a pass

He appeared less tentative than he's been in the past, his mechanics were improved and his sideline rapport with Josh McCown was continuous.

Considering where Hackenberg was this time a year ago, that's legitimate progress.

Granted, it wasn't flawless - his pass with 2:50 left in the second quarter, intended for Charone Peake, tipped off the offensive line and was almost intercepted, and he added a turnover late in the third quarter, off a fumbled snap - but it did display exactly why the Jets were so high on him in the first place. Expect first round draft pick, wideout Corey Davis, and second-year running back Derrick Henry to see a lot of opportunities in the early going.

For the first time since fracturing his fibula against the Jaguars, the St. Louis alum returned to the field Saturday for the Titan's preseason game against the Jets. During that time he completed two of three passes for 15 yards with no interceptions or touchdowns.

Hackenberg was greeted by a sack on his first snap of the third quarter.

For Hackenberg, there were plenty of positives.

As if in direct response to every single negative thing people have had to say about the Jets this preseason (and there have been many), McCown and company kicked off the game with a near-perfect drive, going 78 yards in eight plays to score only 3:52 into the game. The highlight of the night was a perfectly-placed, 53-yard pass to Robby Anderson down the right sideline.

McCown finished 3-of-4 for 72 yards and the touchdown. He completed 2-of-3 passes for 15 yards and also ran once for a six-yard gain. One of his punts went only 14 yards, and he failed to pin the Titans offense deep in Jets' territory. Bryce Petty got mop-up duty, playing one series in the third quarter and the entire fourth.

The Jets' starting defense looked dominant against the Marcus Mariota-led Titans. He was sacked once for a seven-yard loss.

The much-discussed Jets wide receiving corps did OK on Saturday night. Anderson had three catches for 71 yards, and Chris Harper, continuing his solid play from training camp, caught two balls for 21 yards.

The Jets forced two turnovers in the second half.

Below you'll find our live tracker for tonight's Titans vs. Jets game.

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