How bad is D-Rob's broken hand really?

For two years, defensive end John Abraham kept an article by the New York Post's Jay Greenberg in his locker for motivation. The piece called him one of the biggest underachievers in New York sports. Today Abraham finally ripped the article from his locker . . .

Abraham has decided to switch to the number 56 because that is the date of his birthday - May 6. Rookie linebacker Dennis Haley, who is likely going to end up on the practice squad, gave Abraham the number without any financial gain. Haley is now wearing number 49 . . .

One thing that makes Abraham such a weapon for the Jets defense is that he's got freakish speed for a player his size (6-4, 265). He ran a 4.5 forty when he came out of the University of South Carolina.

"He's as fast as a running back and a wide receiver, and he plays defensive end," said running back Curtis Martin . . .

Early in the practice, Abraham ran over to his defensive line drill, and stopped short, faking a back injury in front of the media. This drew a big laugh from his teammates. Reporters have accused Abraham of being injury prone thoughtout his career . . .

One guy who is going to be tough to cut, but will likely get caught up in a number's game, is defensive end Joey Evans. He has played real well this preseason. His game has clearly benefitted from all the extra reps he received during Abraham's absence . . .

The Jets game in Philadelphia is a huge contest for wideout Chas Gessner. Thought to be the leading candidate for the fifth wide receiver job, Gessner is letting his chances at the job slip away after struggling in the Jets first three preseason games.

"It's obvious I messed up a couple of opportunities," said Gessner.

But with a strong performance in Philadelphia, he could still land the job. He's got two things the Jets are looking for out of their fifth wideout. He is a very good special teams player (three tackles against Minnesota), and he's a big target at 6-foot-5, something the Jets could use . . .

Every day this week in the Jets locker room, Jets punter Ben Graham has been surrounded by a big group of reporters. This is something new for Graham, who never had to deal with reporters in the locker room while playing Australian Rules Football.

"The media aren't allowed in the locker room - period - no media," said Graham about the AFL. "They put two or three players out to do the talking."

Graham had another impressive practice on Tuesday, with a number of long, deep punts with great hang-times . . .

Rookie punt returner Justin Miller, who has been struggling catching Graham's punts, made a spectacular, Willie Mays, over-the-shoulder catch during Tuesday's practice . . .

Martin admitted on Tuesday that the Jets new offensive system has been hard to learn.

"It's a lot more memorization," said Martin. "Things don't flow together like normal offensives. There are a lot of things individualized, which is hard, especially at the running back and quarterback positions. In some systems, you say blue, and no matter what all the other calls are, you're definitely doing one thing. Whereas this system is not like that. I think this offense is a little harder for defenses to figure out because it's not predictable. If you see one formation, you can say you know they're going to run a draw, but we could run almost anything. It's not predictable at all." . . .

The Jets had a huge offensive tackle in for a tryout, but the team didn't disclose his name. He was about 6-foot-7 . . .

Former Jets guard Dave Yovanovits is now with the Cleveland Browns . . .

Herman Edwards spent some time on Tuesday tutoring the Jets new nickel back - Derrick Strait . . .

Defensive tackle Dewayne Robertson didn't practice, but he was seen walking off the field with a Gatorade bottle. Why is that significant? Well he was grasping it with his broken right hand. It's clearly not a serious break. He just broke one bone in his hand. It's the bone under the ring finger on his right hand . . .

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