BY NICK ST. DENIS
Quinton Coples got a crash course in the different challenges an NFL offensive line can provide by setting up shop all over the defensive front during his rookie season, something head coach and defensive line guru Rex Ryan likes to do with his big guys. (photo: Pedro Cambra, Flickr)
But now that Coples has been broken in, Ryan plans on keeping Coples more on the outside, where Ryan thinks Coples can thrive as an edge rusher.
"I see him as a guy that can be maybe more of an edge presence than he was his first year," Ryan said Thursday, via NewYorkJets.com. "But having him going through that, putting him over guards, putting him over tackles, even over centers, I think is good. Because when you get over tight ends and things like that, it’s a lot easier to knock those guys back and have that kind of confidence when you face double teams.
"So that was kind of what we did with him. But I’m expecting big things from him. And like I said, I think he’s just now scratching the surface."
Coples, the team's 2012 first-round draft pick, has formed quite the tandem with 2011 first-round defensive lineman Muhammad Wilkerson, as the pair was a rare bright spot for the Jets in 2012. Coples played just over half the amount of snaps Wilkerson did, but the duo combined for 11 sacks, 19 quarterback hits and 26 quarterback hurries.
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