Jason Pierre-Paul looked like a superstar in the preseason opener on Saturday night. Now, it’s back to the bench for the second-year player.
With the return of Osi Umenyiora to the field, Pierre-Paul said he’s been told that he’ll be rotating and backing up both Umenyiora and Justin Tuck. After a preseason (albeit a brief preseason) spent playing right defensive end exclusively and seeming to make significant leaps in his confidence and understanding of the scheme, Pierre-Paul will now be bouncing around the front line.
“I’d rather play both ends,” he said. “The more you learn the more you can help the defense.”
I asked Tuck if he thought it would be better for Pierre-Paul to have a position and stick to it. “It worked for me,” he said of his early years spent rotating and backing up Michael Strahan and Umenyiora. Tuck, however, comes from a very different football background than Pierre-Paul, and he agreed with that.
“My opinion is the more you can do,” Tuck said. “He’s made so many great strides. We’re just going to continue to feel Jason out I guess and see what works out best. He played both well last year, so we’ll see what happens.”