MISSION VIEJO, Calif -- Greetings from "Jets West."
For the second straight year, Mark Sanchez is hosting on-field workouts -- let's call it a mini-minicamp -- for his skill-position teammates on offense. The camp actually began Monday, and it will continue throughout the week. Obviously, with the lockout, the camp takes on greater significance and newsworthiness than it did last July, when Sanchez, after missing most of the offseason because knee surgery, invited teammates to his hometown so he could make up for lost time.
This is quite an elaborate set-up, organized by Sanchez and his older brother, Nick, an attorney who also serves as one of his agents. Aside from the actual field work -- running, stretching, passing drills, etc. -- Sanchez will lead classroom sessions.
Playing the role of offensive coordinator, Sanchez will use video and chalkboard to install new plays and review old ones. That's in the morning. From there, the players head out to the field, just like they would in a non-lockout world.
They'll be working out at Sanchez's alma mater, Mission Viejo High School. Some of the players in attendance are Braylon Edwards, Dustin Keller, LaDainian Tomlinson, Mark Brunell, Kevin O'Connell, John Conner and Patrick Turner. Rookie receivers Jeremy Kerley and Scotty McKnight, drafted over the weekend, also will participate. Right now, Santonio Holmes isn't here, but there was talk of him possibly showing up later in the week. Jerricho Cotchery said he wanted to attend, but he just started running last week as he continues to rehab from back surgery.
Lockout or no lockout, Jets coaches can't be here to supervise. A couple of coaches showed up to observe last year's "Jets West," -- to watch, not coach, they claimed -- and they caught a lot of flak. Sanchez's former high-school coach, QB guru Bob Johnson and his son, former NFL QB Rob Johnson, are on hand.
This isn't an all-football event. Sanchez arranged for his teammates to stay in villas at a nearby oceanfront resort, and he planned a number of social events. On Monday night, they traveled up to Los Angeles to see the Lakers playoff game. On Thursday, the group will go out to celebrate Cinco de Mayo.
If you have to be locked out, this isn't a bad way to go.