FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — The Jets will have to hope that Kony Ealy is a fast learner.
The Jets claimed the former Patriot on Sunday, and on Monday, the 4-3 defensive end already was working on adapting to the Jets’ 3-4 base defense. (The Jets did deploy a 4-3 package late in Saturday night’s game against the Giants.)
“As long as I learn what I have to do, it doesn’t matter,” the 25-year-old edge rusher said. “If they ask me, I’ll play safety.
“That’s an over-exaggeration . . . [but] I got a couple of days to learn whatever they’re going to throw at me and that’s my focus right now, to take it one step at a time but quickly, because we have a game on Thursday.”
Ealy had 14 sacks and 43 tackles in three seasons with the Panthers and was acquired by the Patriots in March before being cut. He memorably had three sacks, an interception, a fumble recovery and a forced fumble in the Super Bowl two years ago. He’ll face the Eagles’ offense Thursday.
Ealy, who has been reunited with his cousin, Sheldon Richardson, was a tantalizing target from the moment he was cut. Seven teams placed a claim on him before the Jets landed him.
The Jets traded safety Ronald Martin to the Colts for long snapper Thomas Hennessy. Todd Bowles said he’d like to see a competition between Hennessy, who attended New Jersey’s Don Bosco Prep, and the team’s current long snapper, Tanner Purdum. The Jets also picked up CFL DB Armagedon Draughn and let go of DL Devon Still . . . Bowles said he wasn’t sure if OLB Lorenzo Mauldin (back) will play Thursday.