His Jets mates gushed about the way the rookie plays the game… and his hair is on fire all the time. It is the mentality that Robert Saleh craves and demands.
“It’s hard to describe,” Michelle Clemons told The Post.
It’s easier for the defensive end to describe Michelle Clemons when asked about turning once he puts on his Jets helmet. He absorbs the question for a few seconds, which is his way of doing, before saying with a smile:
“Henf. And more violence.”
He is 6 feet 5 feet and 270 pounds or so growing and speaking in a low voice. He does most of his speaking in the field.
“He’s a huge, muscular guy, he plays the game wildly, he plays the game recklessly, he plays with passion,” Sheldon Rankins told The Post. “I think every time he’s out there, you watch him run toward the ball no matter where he’s on the court, you see him run off to do a play. And then he shows up again and runs back to the line and is ready to do the same thing again. When you have a guy who wants In doing it at a high clip over and over again, it’s not the norm. There are a lot of guys who walk away from certain plays, turn down certain things and walk away from certain moments, but he’s not one of those guys.”
Kwon Alexander: “He’s a beast man. I love his work ethic, how he runs toward the ball in every game. He gives like 300 percent every day.”
Lacon Tomlinson: “He’s got a really good engine, and I think he’s got really long arms and he’s very strong.”
Jordan Whitehead: “He’s an interesting guy. He doesn’t say much but he works every day. He’s a funny guy when you get to know him. There are certain guys you wish the best for.”
Clemons, a fourth-round draft pick who put initial character concerns to rest, was tempted to the upside since he started out as a high school comeback.
“I was trying to be Brandon Jacobs,” Clemons said.
He was 6-1, 190 pounds and soon 6-3, 210-215.
“With spring into his freshman year, we played him as the outside quarterback outside the 3-4 chart,” Saks (Texas) High School coach Mark (Reed) Burns told The Post.
It was not a smooth transition. “He got a little battered in his senior year,” Burns said. “He wasn’t used to people coming out and going in his legs and things like that.”
But that fate has remained constant with Michelle Clemons: “His level of effort never wavers,” Byrnes said. “He gives you everything he has. You have men like that, you have bodies like that, you’re going to succeed, and that’s what’s happening to him now.”
Clemons continued to grow during his season at Cisco College, and then during his injury days at Texas A&M. Byrnes couldn’t believe his eyes when he visited Clemons for spring practice after Cisco’s season.
“He got up on the pier and I heard his voice–he has a distinct voice anyway–I turned and looked and went, ‘Man, is that you Michael?’ “I was like, Son of Dadgum, you’ve grown up,” Burns recalls.
Clemons will enjoy getting a chance to chase Lamar Jackson on opening day against the crows.
“I love the way he works and the way he carries himself,” Tomlinson said. “You can tell he really cares about doing his job, he has a lot of great leaders in his room plus he can follow. I am particularly excited about his growth throughout the season.”
Clemons affectionately nickname Deebo after the bully who threatens the neighborhood in the movie “Friday.”
“A special man,” Rankins said. “A lot has been done about his behavior and how he goes about his work and how intimidating an unquoted quote can seem, but he’s a great player, a great guy. He’s done nothing but work since he got here. We expect nothing from him but huge things and he expects the same things from him. himself. And when a man expects these things and acts the way he does, he will be clicked.”
They had never heard Clemons’ words in practice.
“He has his own aura,” Tomlinson said. “It’s kinda cool.”
Byrnes proudly watched Clemons from afar this summer.
“He’s gone 100 miles,” Burns said.
With 100 mph violence.