When the New York Jets used a 2010 second-round draft pick on UMass offensive lineman Vladimir Ducasse, they knew it could take some time before the physically gifted big man developed into a viable NFL starter.
Now entering his fourth season, time isn’t on Big Vlad’s side anymore. The 25-year-old Ducasse is in the final year of his rookie contract, and the Jets added more offensive lineman this offseason than any other position.
Ducasse hasn’t been a “bust” per se, but it’s certainly disappointing that a second-round pick has not been able to crack the starting lineup in three seasons, even if the Jets’ offensive line has been a strong unit overall.
Always a strong, physical specimen, Ducasse will enter training camp looking to win one of the two starting guard jobs and salvage his Jets career. The guard competition may be as competitive as any position battle in camp.
Ducasse is battling primarily with veterans Willie Colon and Stephen Peterman, as well as rookies Brian Winters, Oday Aboushi and Will Campbell. It’s safe to say that it’s now or never for Ducasse in a Jets uniform.
This will be the most important training camp of Ducasse’s career, and it will go a long way towards determining what his NFL future is. He could be in danger of getting outright released if he doesn’t make significant strides.
He’s always been physically good enough to be a quality starting lineman in this league, and the Jets have patiently waited for his technique to catch up to his physicality. This is his last chance to make an impression.
It’s Now or Never for New York Jets’ Offensive Lineman Vladimir Ducasse
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