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Austin Seferian-Jenkins: Chance Jets took on me will pay off

Indianapolis Colts v New York Jets

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - DECEMBER 05: Rashaan Melvin #30 of the Indianapolis Colts breaks up a pass intended for Austin Seferian-Jenkins #88 of the New York Jets in the second quarter during their game at MetLife Stadium on December 5, 2016 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)

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When tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins came into the NFL as a 2014 second-round pick of the Buccaneers, there were no shortage of predictions of big things for a player with the kind of size and athleticism that has helped other tight ends find success.

It didn’t play out that way in Tampa as injuries limited him to 16 games in the two years before a DUI arrest led to the Bucs dumping him from the roster last year. Seferian-Jenkins landed with the Jets, but only caught 10 passes in seven games that showed little difference from what had come before.

Seferian-Jenkins stopped drinking and lost weight ahead of this year’s offseason program and drew good notices from beat reporters who took in Jets practices. Seferian-Jenkins believes that those off-field changes will help him on the field this fall.

“I feel like a different person on and off the field,” Seferian-Jenkins said, via the team’s website. “The weight loss has been tremendous and I’m just really happy I have the opportunity to show the Jets taking a chance on me is going to pay off. I’m just trying to work every single day on the team like everybody else.”

The Jets have largely ignored the tight end spot in recent years, but Seferian-Jenkins said new offensive coordinator John Morton has made the position a more prominent part of his offense. With little competition at the position, Seferian-Jenkins should be well positioned to take advantage of that although he’ll have to serve a two-game suspension to start the year.