AFC East Notes: Decker, Easley, Odrick, Bills

Jets wideout Eric Decker is focused on contributing to his new team and is hoping to establish himself as a bona fide number-one receiver. That may be tough without Peyton Manning throwing to him, but the 27-year-old wants to prove that his success shouldn’t be completely attributed to the future Hall of Fame quarterback.

From Year One to Year Five now, I’ve gotten better at my craft,” Decker told Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News. “I’ve become a better receiver. I’m not going to make assumptions because assuming doesn’t really do anything. In this league, you’re only as good as your last play. That’s what people remember. Numbers and statistics come and go away. And then you start over.”

Teammate Sheldon Richardson certainly envisions Decker as a premier wide receiver.

“People want to knock him for the Super Bowl or hate on him a little bit,” Richardson said, “but truth be told, that whole offense disappeared, even Peyton Manning.

But I see a No. 1 receiver in him.”

Let’s check out some more notes from the AFC East…

  •’s Rich Cimini confirms that Jets linebacker Jermaine Cunningham has torn his ACL and is expected to miss the regular season.
  • Cimini also explores whether the Jets would benefit from playing both Geno Smith and Michael Vick at quarterback. He acknowledges that having the players platoon could throw Smith off of his rhythm, but he also notes that a weapon like Vick shouldn’t be warming the bench.
  • Patriots first-round pick Dominique Easley still hasn’t been cleared to practice and will not travel with the team to Richmond, sources tell The Boston Herald’s Jeff Howe. The defensive tackle, who is rehabbing from a torn ACL, is at least a week away from returning to practice.
  • Dolphins defensive end Dion Jordan will be suspended for the first four games of the upcoming season, but that hasn’t prevented the player from making an impact. In fact,’s James Walker says the former first-rounder has been one of the team’s best defensive players in training camp. “He’s anxious to continue to develop,” defensive coordinator Kevin Coyle said. “He knows he’s got a lot of work. He’s been getting a lot of work here. We’ll continue to try to get a lot of players in the preseason games knowing that we’re going to miss him for a bit, but we envision his role is going to be extensive when he comes back and we know he’s going to be a great player for us.”
  • Entering the final year of his contract, Dolphins defensive end Jared Odrick admitted that a future deal is certainly on his mind. However, he’s trying his best to focus on just football. “There’s no time where it’s (a season) not a big deal,” Odrick said (via David J. Neal of the Miami Herald). “But in terms of my situation with me being five years in, it would be a mistake if I didn’t stay focused on my duties as a football player and what I have to do physically and mentally every day. I try to focus on that more than anything else.”
  • The Bills are crowded at wide receiver, but’s Gregg Rosenthal tweets that Marcus Easley “should be a lock” considering his contributions on special teams.
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