Ty Montgomery can look at Saturday night’s performance one of two ways.
He can be thrilled with his overall effort, his touchdown reception and 45 total yards. Or he can be annoyed by his first touch, a fumble after a 5-yard gain that led to a Saints field goal.
It was a mixed night for the versatile running back, as it was for the Jets’ offense in their 28-13 loss to the Saints at MetLife Stadium in the first team’s final tune-up prior to the regular season opener Sept. 8 against the Bills.
Montgomery, the 26-year-old former Raven and Packer, was heavily in the mix, as he has been throughout the preseason as Le’Veon Bell was kept out by coach Adam Gase. Saturday night, he had eight carries for 21 yards. He also made four receptions for 24 yards and hauled in a 2-yard touchdown pass from Sam Darnold to cap the Jets’ lone scoring drive of the first half. Darnold led him beautifully in the back left corner of the end zone for Montgomery’s second touchdown of the preseason.
Montgomery had an impressive summer, showing potential promise as a versatile weapon out of the backfield. The game against the Saints was the first time in a game he showed the kind of weapon he can be as a receiver. In the second game against the Falcons, he was productive on the ground, running for 36 yards on seven carries and a touchdown.
He will clearly be a factor in the offense, even with Bell back in the fold once the real season begins.
“The fact that we had a shot at him coming here and when we got him signed, the wheels started turning on offense as far as, ‘All right, what are we going to do? How are we going to use these guys? What’s it going to look like?’” Gase said early on in camp. “So, we’re experimenting with all that stuff and his versatility and his flexibility and his knowledge and he’s extremely smart. So, we put a lot on his plate and he’s able to play a lot of different roles for us.”