FLORHAM PARK, NJ - Jets fans are panicking over two straight losses but what they should really be worried about is all the injuries that are beginning to take their toll of this Jets team. The good news is both the Jets quarterbacks were full participants in today's practice and should be ready to go.
Todd Bowles said that barring any setbacks Ryan Fitzpatrick will get the start on Sunday, against the Jaguars, and Geno Smith will be available to back him up. So, you can stop having nightmares about the Jets having to start Bryce Petty in what should, despite all the injury concerns, be a very winnable game.
"They got him (Fitzpatrick) taped up pretty good and they got him bandaged up pretty good," Bowles said. "He didn't have any pain, or any effect like that, so he practiced and Geno practiced as well so we got both of them."
Bowles did say they will monitor Fitzpatrick's thumb as the week progresses and admitted that the possibility that Fitzpatrick could make the injury worse by practicing or playing through it is a "concern" but said "as long as he keeps moving forward and making progress he'll be the starter."
Fitzpatrick was wearing a protective glove during practice and said it didn't hamper his ability to take snaps or hand the ball off. After practice he had a special mitt lined with ice to keep the swelling down but said the injury isn't nearly as restrictive as he thought it would be.
As for the rest of the players Calvin Pryor, Nick Mangold, Willie Colon, Brandon Marshall, Eric Decker and Devin Smith all sat out of practice today. Buster Skrine, Bilal Powell and Kellen Davis were all limited and everybody else was a full participant in practice.
Incase you didn't notice that's three receivers that didn't practice today and Chris Owusu is already out for the year and Quincy Enunwa is still suspended so that pretty much left Jeremy Kerley and Kenbrell Thompkins as the only receivers out there for the quarterbacks today. Obviously that concerns Bowles at least just a little bit right now.
"It's concerning right now, we don't have a lot of guys, but it's early. We have a couple of days to heal up," Bowles said. "So, I'll be concerned towards the weekend if they're not making any progress."
What makes it no so concerning is Decker will be fine, he said after practice he will play on Sunday and today was more of a rest day for him and Marshall also said he feels good. Marshall wouldn't elaborate anymore than that but he seemed confident that he'd be able to play.
Colon also got a rest day and should be able to play no problem, Pryor is the most unlikely to play as he is still recovering from the high-ankle sprain and will likely miss at least another week or two. The biggest question mark is Mangold, he wanted to play on Sunday but the doctor's wouldn't clear him which would lead you to believe he should be able to go on Sunday but if he still feels tightness/soreness in his neck the doctor's could very well make him sit out another week. Obviously that's not what Jets fans want to hear but a neck injury, especially for a center, is tricky and the Jets will likely err on the side of caution.