Jalen Saunders Needs To Put Past Behind Him and Perform Thursday

By Stephen Conway
Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports
Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

It has been a circus of a week for New York Jets rookie wide receiver Jalen Saunders, but the fourth round pick is excited to get back to work.

Saunders was involved in a one-car accident two weeks ago, where he apparently suffered a seizure prior to crashing. Medical information was released recently, so it was a mystery as to what caused the accident until a few days ago.

Bottom line, it’s over. I am not as concerned about Saunders’ health as I am concerned about him performing on the field. I have written countless articles about this rookie wide receiver class; someone needs to step up. Shaq Evans, out for the season with an injury, and Quincy Enunwa, have not panned out to what the Jets were expecting. However, Saunders has shined, especially as a punt returner. As it is now, Saunders is the leading candidate for the starting role as a punt returner. However, I, as well as Saunders, would like to see him on the field with the first string offense, as the fourth receiver, and emerge into an offensive weapon for years to come.

We’ve said this before, he has the quickness and skill to be an excellent receiver, whether it be in the slot or in the outside. Saunders will get a lot of playing time Thursday against the Philadelphia Eagles in their preseason finale, and that is the time to really prove something. With Eric Decker, Jeremy Kerley  and David Nelson most likely being all inactive, it’s between Saunders, Salim Hakeem, Clyde Gates and Stephen Hill to battle it out for that fourth string slot. Hopefully Saunders proves he’s worthy of the nod.

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