It's no secret that wide receiver Braylon Edwards is looking to resurrect a career with the Jets this season after injuries and lack of playing time have hampered his production the past two seasons. He was not a major impact player with the San Francisco 49ers or Seattle Seahawks, but that didn't stop teammate Kellen Winslow from getting excited when he heard news of Edwards returning to the New York Jets.
The two players can't get away from each other. Edwards and Winslow were teammates when they played for the Cleveland Browns and Seattle Seahawks. Winslow hasn't hidden the fact he prefers to be on the same team as Edwards.
"That's my brother from another mother," Winslow said. "Love that guy. He's one of the best I've seen, and it's good, we were in Cleveland and then we were in Seattle together. Didn't work out there for me, for whatever reason. But, it's full circle now, and we're back."
Both Edwards and Winslow will be counted on heavily as playmakers for a Jets team with major questions marks at quarterback, especially with Santonio Holmes' injury status in limbo. Winslow was invited to a three-day tryout during minicamp and signed a one-year contract soon after.
Rex Ryan loves what he saw from Winslow during minicamp. The veteran will be a part of a heated tight end competition that will take place this summer in Cortland, N.Y. Winslow's main competition will be Jeff Cumberland, who saw a lot of playing time when Dustin Keller was out with a pulled groin and high ankle sprain.
"There's competition every year, you've got to prove yourself every year," admitted Gang Green's new tight end. "The whole tight end group is competing. We've got a lot of playmakers on this team, and that's what training camp is about."
Right now the Jets are unsure of who will be throwing the ball to them during the September 8 game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The season opener against the Buccaneers will be a reunion for Winslow, who played for their organization from 2009-2011 and holds the franchise record for catches in single-season with 77 during his first year with the team.
"This is day one," noted Winslow. "Nobody's the front runner. We may have ones, we have twos, we may have threes. But guys go down and guys have to step up. It's just about competition right now and it's only day one."
For Winslow, the signing with the Jets is an opportunity to resurrect his career and return to his Pro Bowl form. The veteran tight end doesn't believe Gang Green is as bad as everyone is making them out to be and is confident about the upcoming season.
"Well, I know from experience that you can't always pay attention to what you see or read," Winslow said. "I know Rex (Ryan) and I played against him when I was with the Browns. One of the best defensive coaches I've ever been around. I hated playing against him, so, I know he brings it and he's real passionate and he means what he says and that's how I am, and then that's how this team is going to be. It's going to reflect Coach Ryan. I love him."
The team has a lot of position competitions, including at tight end. Ryan hopes to figure out the starting players sooner rather than later so that he can rally the troops and prepare to contend in the AFC East.