Falcons’ secondary tested by veteran Jets quarterback Joe Flacco

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. – Jets veteran quarterback Joe Flacco, a former Super Bowl winner with the Ravens, had his way with the Falcons’ secondary on the first day of joint practices Friday.

“It was great,” Jets quarterbacks coach Rob Calabrese said. “Finally got to go against a different scheme. We’ve been going against our defense for 15 practices and the way it goes, we just went out there and started running our training camp plays and not really game-planning. So, our quarterback eyes had to be great and they were.”

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Flacco, in one of the move-the-ball situations, drove the Jets on an eight-play, 65-yard drive, which included a 42-yard pass to wide receiver Elijah Moore.

“We were able to see some different coverages and adjust off of them,” Calabrese said. “The receivers and tight ends, too.”

Flacco was the No. 1 quarterback because Zach Wilson had knee surgery earlier this week.

“He can benefit from this time in a learning way,” Calabrese said.

Wilson, who was the No. 2 overall pick last season, is the Jets quarterback of the future.

“He was having a great training camp,” Calabrese said. “He was executing our scheme. He was playing with great timing and he showed up with him making plays.”

He injured his knee running the ball when he should have just ran out of bounds in an exhibition game against the Eagles on Aug. 12.

“First through third quarter you’re getting down,” Calabrese said. “You’re protecting yourself. He’s a competitor when he’s out there and he understands we need him out there. He’s learned from that and he’ll grow.”

Flacco, 37, who came into the league in the same draft (2008) as former Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan, will likely open the season for the Jets.

“Joe is a true football guy,” Calabrese said. “He loves being in the locker room, so when he’s out there, you don’t really see his age difference. He’s just playing ball.”

Falcons’ defensive line: Defensive end Grady Jarrett believes the defense is a work in progress.

With defensive end Marlon Davidson out after knee surgery on his chronically injured left knee, Taquon Graham and nose tackle Anthony Rush are set to start next to Jarrett along the defensive line.

“The defensive line is coming together good,” Jarrett said. “We’ve got a good group. I’m excited for Taquon Graham. Playing next to him is going to be really, really helpful for me. Big Rush is going to do a good job for us. It’s a good group. It’s a group of young and hungry guys.”

Jarrett believes the Falcons are developing some depth, too.

“(Jalen) Dalton is coming on good,” Jarrett said. “(Abdullah) Anderson is coming on good. They are definitely making their presence felt every day. You can see the respect that they are gaining with our teammates. (They are) just putting in that work on a daily basis.”

Tough stretch: The practice against the Jets was the first of four joint practices over a period of 10 days, that also includes two exhibition games.

“We’re definitely, pushing the envelope,” Jarrett said. “Pushing your body to that max. Competing every day. I love it. You definitely have to embrace it and know that it’s going to pay off when that season comes.”

After practicing with the Jets on Saturday, the Falcons will play them Monday night. The Falcons will host the Jaguars for practice Wednesday and Thursday before playing their final exhibition game Aug. 27.

“When you have the high intensity back-to-back-to-back, it forces you to go into this mode mentally,” Jarrett said. “I think it’s good. … I’m accepting the challenge, and that’s my job to try to push the guys to be able to bring it every day.”

Jets camp: Jarrett likes the Jets’ practice facility.

“I love the setup,” Jarrett said.

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