Friday, September 6, 2013

Wilkerson: A rattled Freeman equals victory


The New York Jets have got into the heads of many quarterbacks since Rex Ryan took over as head coach in 2009.

In that regard, it's business as usual for Gang Green's defense entering an AFC bout with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Sunday. The Jets think they'll be able perplex Bucs quarterback Josh Freeman and force him into costly errors.

"You see it on film," Jets defensive lineman Muhammad Wilkerson said this week, via The Tampa Bay Times. "You get him off his mark and get him kind of rattled, and he kind of just makes mistakes on his own. It's not even so much the defense, it's just him not being comfortable.

"If we do that, we should definitely be fine and come out with a victory."

Freeman last faced the Jets during his 2009 rookie season. He threw three picks and no touchdowns that day, completing just 14 of 33 passes for 93 yards.

That was four years ago, but Freeman has struggled since, amassing 39 interceptions over the past two seasons.

The Jets' defensive front will be without second-year riser Quinton Coples this week, though it still has plenty of firepower in Wilkerson, rookie Sheldon Richardson and a handful of other youngsters and veteran rotational players who should again thrive in Ryan's multiple system and will be firing on all cylinders in the opener.

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