Robert Saleh took the glass half-full approach when it came to Dalvin Cook’s disappointment with his role in the offense.
He would rather a player be upset at his lack of touches, then be OK with it.
“The frustration is normal,” the Jets’ coach said on Friday. “Expressing that frustration, it’s normal, and I’d much rather have that than him just staying silent and just walking into the building, collecting his paycheck, and going home.”
On Thursday, the 28-year-old Cook expressed his displeasure with his lack of carries, though he stopped short of saying he would request a trade.
After signing a $7 million deal with the Jets in August, Cook has barely touched the ball. He has 39 carries for 109 yards and nine catches for 46 yards after running for over 1,000 yards each of the previous four seasons with the Vikings.
Obviously, a big part of Cook’s reduced role is the impressive play of Breece Hall, who has run for 426 yards on 66 carries and caught an additional 13 passes for 113 yards.
“It’s obviously been a different situation for me to be in,” Cook said. “Just coming from where I come from, just being productive in this league to not getting as many touches and stuff like that.”
Said Saleh: “I’m not surprised, he’s a competitor. I’m actually happy he’s a little frustrated, because it means he’s all in and he wants to be a part of it, he wants to get reps, he wants to play, he’s not just here to collect a paycheck.”
Don’t call it a rivalry. Not if you ask Garrett Wilson. The Jets’ wideout pointed to AFC foes the Bills, Patriots and Dolphins as the Jets’ rivals, not the Giants.
“It’s cool to be in the same city as them and play against them, but the reality is we root for them except for when they’re playing us,” Wilson said. “We know a lot of them guys, we see them around town. This will be a cool experience to go at it for three hours and after, be able to chop it up. It’s for the city, for sure.”
Wilson said he is particularly close with Giants cornerback Deonte Banks, wideout Wan’Dale Robinson and tight end Lawrence Cager.
“This is for our fans, because we want to give them those bragging rights,” he said.
Offensive lineman Joe Tippmann (quad) was ruled out as expected. Special teams ace Irv Charles (shoulder) is doubtful. Defensive end Will McDonald IV (back), cornerback Michael Carter II (hamstring) and receiver Randall Cobb (shoulder) are all questionable. Carter practiced fully on Friday for the first time this week, a positive sign for his availability on Sunday.