With the suspension of Josh Evans a possibility, Alan Harper becomes an important player for the Jets. If Evans is suspended, the Jets would be down to four defensive tackles. Since they rotate four defensive tackles during the regular season, Harper could become a key player. He seems up to the challenge. He looks so much better this spring compared to a year ago. Last year Harper was a non-factor after being drafted in the fourth round out of Fresno State. If he didn't step up in the final preseason game, he probably would have been cut. Harper clearly wasn't strong enough when he arrived in Hempstead. After a year of intense training with John Lott, he looks like a totally different player and should be a factor this year. He's much stronger along with being quicker and faster . . .
Evans continues to practice with the team. He is awaiting the appeal of his potential marijuana suspension. He is not happy the story was leaked out to the media. He feels he was convicted before he had a trial. If Evan's positive drug test is upheld, the burning question is - how long will he be suspended? The NFL no longer suspends three time offenders for life. One source familiar with the situation thinks Evans might get an eight-game suspension because that is what the Saints Dale Carter received last year under similar circumstances . . .
The Jets signed the Arena's League's best kicker - Clay Rush of the Indiana Firebirds. He will compete with Doug Brien and Danny Kight for the placekicking job. But don't think for one second the Jets are off the market for a kicker. The team's regular season placekicker still might not be here . . .
Santana Moss looked great in practice. He made a nice diving catch, and is just exuding confidence. He looks like he is poised for a breakout year. He also looked great on a double reverse. With Laveranues Coles gone, look for Moss to be their main threat on reverses . . .
Chad Pennington hit Curtis Conway on a perfect slant that the receiver took a long way. Expect Conway to catch this route quite a bit. Remember Coles had a lot of success with it last year. With this size, speed and ability to run after the catch, it's a perfect route for Conway . . .
The Japanese Ambassador to the United Nations is holding a reception for the Jets at his residence tonight in honor of the team playing a preseason game in Tokyo this summer . . .
The team is so impressed with rookie tight end Gabe Reid, they have cut two other tight ends recently. First it was Rolando Shuler and yesterday they released Jason Thomas. Reid has been so solid, he's already listed as the team's third tight end. Remember, he is a 26-year-old rookie out of BYU, so he is more mature than most first year players. He served a two-year Mormon mission in Chile, so that is one reason he is an older rookie . . .
Dewayne Robertson shot into the backfield so fast on one play, Pennington didn't even have a chance to fade back to pass. The guy moves incredibly well for a man his size.