The Jets start their offseason schedule on Monday, and there aren’t many players who have more than third-year wide receiver Denzel Mims.
The 2020 second-round pick had a forgettable second season that featured food poisoning, a case of COVID-19 and a lack of cohesion with the new coaching staff. It all added up to a season in which Mims found himself buried on the depth chart and struggled to enter the pitch.
It was shortly after that disappointing season ended that Mims called Chad Marr, his personal trainer in Frisco, Texas, to let him know he was ready to get to work.
“He came almost immediately,” Marr said in a phone interview a few days ago. “He was here so early that he was training with my major league baseball players. That’s how early it was. Usually I start seeing guys after the Super Bowl. Denzel was here long before that.
After spending the past three months working with Mims, Marr believes the receiver is ready to reach his potential this year.
“Put your money on this guy because he’s going to have an amazing year,” Marr said. “You’re going to be really happy with what you see.”
Marr has worked with Mims since 2020 when Mims was preparing for the NFL Draft at Baylor. Marr and Mims got together in January and started training twice a day. The first four to six weeks were all about recovery and healing from the season. Then they started to rebuild Mims’ body.
“We put more size on him, but we made him lean at the same time,” Marr said. “He’s a taller, leaner version of himself. The leaner and stronger guys are, the more effective movers they are. He definitely needed to get bigger. He had lost a bit of height.
A bad salmon last spring led to food poisoning that caused Mims to lose 20 pounds and put him behind learning coordinator Mike LaFleur’s offense. When training camp started, Mims was way down the depth chart and the coaches clearly lacked confidence in him. As he started to improve during the season, he contracted COVID-19 and missed three games in November. When he returned, his playing time was limited. He finished the year with eight catches for 133 yards.
“It’s really hard to recover from all that for one season,” Marr said. “You don’t get the dedicated time you need to put everything back together. We definitely needed to get him back to where he felt like again. We spent a lot of time, about six weeks, making him feel good.
Marr said Mims would work with him around four hours a day between the two sessions. Mims also did fieldwork two to three times a week. A few weeks ago, Mims joined quarterback Zach Wilson and a few other teammates for workouts in Arizona.
“His work ethic is second to none,” Marr said. “I have a lot of athletes here. He is definitely a lead dog. He’s a guy you’d put in the front of the sled. When you deal with the people we deal with, you are dealing with a very high caliber person, but Denzel is something special. He is an extremely motivated and focused worker. I think for him this offseason, especially because last year was such a tough year for him, he really wanted to get back to work.
As the Jets return to work on Monday, Mims will try to win over coach Robert Saleh, LaFleur and receivers coach Miles Austin, something he failed to do last year. It is believed the Jets will take a receiver early in this year’s draft, which could make it even more difficult for Mims to secure a role on the 2022 team. Marr believes Mims is ready to impress coaches and make big things.
“This guy is just going to tear it up,” Marr said. ” I can not wait. I’m not a Jets fan, but I am now because I can’t wait to see Denzel. Just throw the ball at him. He will shake things up. »