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Jets' defense dominates high-spirited practice

Jets head coach Todd Bowles talks to media

Jets head coach Todd Bowles talks to media at the team's training facility in Florham Park, N.J. on June 5, 2018. Credit: Patrick E. McCarthy

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — The Jets’ next-to-last practice of the offseason was feisty. A fight nearly broke out between rookie defensive end Nathan Shepherd and guard Brian Winters, with safety Jamal Adams yelling at both to get it on.

Wednesday’s practice was dominated by the defense, which made two interceptions, dropped two more and had numerous sacks. The offense had its moments, but the defense had the better day.

The usually soft-spoken defensive end Leonard Williams was yelling about his group. Todd Bowles was yelling, too, but he used an expletive to describe his displeasure at Williams for touching Teddy Bridgewater. In these practices, quarterbacks wear red tops, meaning they can’t be touched.

“We cannot touch the quarterback,” Bowles said. “There is no fine line. We don’t touch the quarterback in shorts and T-shirts. Ever.”

The two-hour practice ended with a sack of rookie Sam Darnold, who just flung the ball toward the sideline as the final horn blared.

When the players gathered at midfield to break, Adams ran toward the pack smiling and laughing with some teammates.

“We had some guys on the unanimous trash-talking team,” Bowles said. “We will get some T-shirts. They make it every year.”

Bates upbeat on Darnold

Offensive coordinator Jeremy Bates is impressed with Darnold’s progress. Bates said the Jets are not treating Darnold like a rookie and are giving him a full playbook along with practice snaps with the first team. Bates is impressed with something about Darnold that he saw at USC.

“I think his suddenness,” Bates said. “If you watch his college tape, the ability to make plays off schedule, he’s just very sudden. If he sees a guy open, the ball is out now. Not a lot of wasted thought process.”

Jet streams

WR Terrelle Pryor’s walking boot was removed from his left foot Wednesday. He watched practice with the area around the ankle and foot wrapped . . . CB Morris Claiborne has a soft cast on his slightly swollen left wrist, which is bruised. He will wear the cast six to eight weeks.

New York Sports