Conner A Pro In The Making

Draft pick John Conner gives the dish on the Jets and his transition to the NFL.

Florham Park, NJ – He hasn't gotten the attention of the team's top two picks, Kyle Wilson and Vlad Ducasse, but Jets' fullback John Conner has the potential to be a major impact player for New York.

Conner, a fifth round pick out of Kentucky, will be afforded the advantage of seeing time on the field while being groomed slowly and patiently for the role of starting fullback. With incumbent fullback Tony Richardson re-signing a one year deal to return to the green and white, Conner will utilize his rookie year to ready himself to take the role of fullback and make it his own – potentially as early as 2011.

Soft-spoken, Conner said that the opportunity to work with Richardson is one that excites him.

"Being able to work with someone like Tony Richardson, getting the chance to see how he approaches things and handles himself, it is a really special opportunity," Conner told "How he works, how he studies – he's a great example."

This season, Conner expects to not only get some reps as a fullback, but also on special teams. He's fairly realistic about this year, looking at it as a learning experience and the chance to get on the field and simply "help the team anyway I can." So far, OTA sessions have been going well for Conner who said that the transition from college to the NFL has been going along well.

"So far, it hasn't been anything major or terribly difficult," said Conner after Thursday's OTA session. "It's just learning things, a new language and a new way to do things. It's a transition more than anything."

Conner said that he is adapting to life in the NFL and with the Jets – "it's everything I dreamed it would be" – and things are going as smoothly as he could expect. When he's not at Atlantic Health Jets Training Center working out or going through drills, he said that he is in the playbook. The Jets' playbook, he estimates, is about 20% thicker then when he was in the SEC with Kentucky.

All told, Conner said that he spends roughly two or three hours a day, on average, studying his new offensive schemes.

"It's a lot more work, a lot more time spent studying the playbook and trying to understand it, getting the language down," Conner said. "But now I don't have classes to go to – it is my job now that I'm in the NFL to understand this thing so I can do whatever I need to do when I am on the field."

Kristian R. Dyer can be reached for questions, comments and crude remarks at and followed at

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