FLORHAM PARK: Shortly after being traded to the New York Jets this offseason, Brandon Marshall hopped on a conference call with reporters and filled all in that he planned to get together with quarterback Geno Smith for some 1-on-1 workouts.
Now three months later, and with the Jets getting set for a month-long break before training camp, Marshall and Smith plan on getting together again. But this time, they won’t be alone.
“We’ve been talking about that,” Marshall said before the Jets second minicamp practice. “We’re starting to get guys together now. We’ll be in Chicago in about a week or so.”
Marshall said all Jets receivers, tight ends, quarterbacks and running backs are invited to a string of private workouts based around the team’s new offensive playbook. While Smith is the one organizing the event, Marshall is playing the host. The original plan was for the unit to meet in Florida, the location where Marshall and Smith had their original workout.
But recently, Marshall became a father when he and his wife Michi welcomed the birth of their baby twins. With Michi in Chicago, Marshall asked his teammates if they wouldn’t mind coming to the Windy City.
“It’s tough for me to get to Florida right now,” Marshall said. “My wife is more comfortable in Chicago so I asked the guys if they were comfortable coming in. We’re trying to make it work.”
Any extra time Marshall and his teammates can get together is extremely valuable. According to the five-time Pro Bowler, while New York is talented, talent alone doesn’t mean much. It takes execution. Execution comes from chemistry.
There have been baby steps taken, too. After the offense struggled in the team’s minicamp opener on Tuesday, the unit was much more cohesive on Wednesday. At one point, Smith connected on five consecutive touchdown passes.
“It’s all about chemistry and being in the right places,” Marshall said. “If you’re two inches off in this game on the offensive side, it throws off the whole play. On defense, two or three guys can make a mistake and you’ll still get a pick-six.
“These guys we’ve got, we’ve got a great group. That’s what I love about this locker room. We’ve got a great mix of young guys, talented guys. Then you have some veterans that are just awesome.”
Now, the group just needs to come together. And Marshall, Smith and the rest of the offense hopes that begins to take in Chicago.