Cornerback Dexter McDougle continues to make a name for himself entering his rookie season. The New York Jets‘ defender stood out in the preseason opener against the Indianapolis Colts to the point where he’s looking more like a more viable option than projected starter, Dimitri Patterson. When the time came to go out on the field and see what he can do, McDougle rose to the occasion and proved his worth.
Many predicted that Patterson would have no problem solidifying the other starting spot opposite Dee Milliner, but as of late, he might be on the outside looking in. Patterson was absolutely attacked by the Colts and he showed a lack of detail, speed and overall defensive awareness. He honestly looked confused on the field and didn’t live up to his veteran status. Once McDougle stepped in to relieve him of his duties, he surprised many with his skills and ability to disrupt plays. There is a strong possibility that perhaps Patterson might not be the answer at starting cornerback and McDougle might step in and take that spot right from under him.
Since Patterson is considered more of a slot-style cornerback in nickel situations, he might be at a disadvantage on the Jets’ defense. McDougle actually better suits the more one-on-one style when it comes to defending which explains why he had a step up over Patterson on the gridiron. Regardless, McDougle could very well receive more playing time with the first-team unit to continue his progression to be ready to start just in case Patterson is still injured or doesn’t live up to what he was predicted to bring to the table.
If this early-preseason showcasing is any indication of what could occur come the regular season, McDougle might find himself starting alongside Milliner in no time. While Patterson looked like he would step up to be the veteran presence the Jets needed in their defensive secondary, it looks like a youth movement could be in the works instead.
It could either bode very well for the Jets or turn into an absolute disaster. It all truly depends on how well McDougle translates everything toward the football games that actually matter.