As the Jets gear up for their homestretch of the 2018 regular season, outside linebacker Frankie Luvu is focused on getting after the quarterback.
“Keep hunting,” Luvu said on Inside the Jets with Eric Allen and Erik Coleman. “What I show on film, that’s my résumé right there. I’m just here to help the team win in any way. I’m just blessed with my coaches, the facilities, the organization. I can’t wait to finish strong and try to stay healthy.”
Since signing with the Jets as an undrafted free agent in May, Luvu has made of the most of his opportunity. The Washington State product put together an impressive training camp and preseason before he was a final cut. The next day, he signed on to the Green & White’s practice squad and was promoted to the active roster less than a week later.
“Coach Kevin Greene called me and the first thing he said was to trust the technique and fundamentals and ‘I’m going to teach you, kid. You’re going to see the field,’ ” Luvu said regarding when he first signed with the team. “The first day I came to work, I put my head down and stayed humble.”
Now, the rookie ‘backer has seen an uptick in playing time the last two games as he’s played an average of 65% of the defensive snaps in Weeks 12-13 compared to 29% in Weeks 1-10 . In that span, he recorded nine tackles, two for loss, one sack, two quarterback hits and has forced one penalty on each of the opposing left tackles.
“Right now, I’m just trying to do the best I can to make this team win,” he said. “That’s putting me on the field, doing my best each and every play, trying to make something happen, make a play. I’m also trying to be a leader out there by my actions. I’m not a vocal dude, but I just lead by my example. I hit somebody hard and hopefully somebody next to me feels that.”
Coincidentally, the 6’3”, 236-pounder’s second career sack came against one of his childhood idols and fellow Polynesian, Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota.
“After that sack, I was thinking, ‘Should I help him up or should I just go celebrate?’ ” Luvu said. “After the game, I went up to him and said, ‘Good game. I look up to you and so do the people from Samoa.’ ”
Luvu recorded the first of three Jets sacks in Nashville as he took down Mariota on the Titans’ first drive of the game, forcing them to punt. The American Samoa native and Jordan Jenkins, his fellow outside linebacker, ran a stunt on a four-man rush that cleared the way for Luvu.
“They use one of the speed guys to make all the calls, so I made one of the calls,” he said. “It was me and Jordan. We did a little twist and I sold it really well. One of their lineman, 61, once he’s locked on someone, he’ll stay on you. When I was locked onto him, I saw Jordan in my peripheral vision cross onto him and I just took the outside move and ended up with the sack.”
For the year, Luvu has recorded 23 tackles, three for loss, two sacks and 12 quarterback hits in 10 games.
“He’s a smart, young man and he’s hungry,” Greene said. “It doesn’t surprise me he’s having measured success out there. He’s going to get better.”