Florham Park, N.J.– The Jets entered the Black Hole in Oakland as a fairly healthy team (with big exceptions to Mangold and Turner), but they left with not only a loss, but an expanded injury list.
Mark Sanchez broke his nose on one of the sacks by the Raiders defense, Antonio Cromartie left the game and had to be taken to the hospital with what turned out to be a bruised rib and a bruised lung and Jeff Cumberland went from being in position to catch an early touchdown pass to having his season end on the same play as he tore his Achilles tendon.
Today, Rex Ryan took to the podium to discuss everything that went wrong yesterday afternoon and he gave the media some updates on the Jets injury list.
“Well I think it’s probably (not) minor to everybody else. If we had our nose broke we’d probably think it’s more than minor, but that happens, he got hit in the nose. The thing I love about Mark is how competitive he was. Game’s on the line and he’s trying to dive for it, albeit he never got in, but he’s a super competitor.” Ryan said, “He’s tough, I don’t think there’s any doubt about that. You’d like to keep him from taking all those hits, now some of it’s his own fault. Like you get outside the pocket, just get rid of it Mark. But again, the quarterback’s not our problem right now.”
Ryan made a point to mention that Sanchez has to do a better job of getting rid of the ball quicker, but he also made it a point to emphasis that Sanchez is the least of his worries for now. More important is getting the offensive line to function like the Jets offensive lines of one and two years ago and obviously the return of Nick Mangold can go a long way to solving that problem.
“We’ll see. He’s probably day-to-day as well.” Ryan said when asked what the chances are Mangold could play on Sunday. “I don’t think he’ll practice Wednesday, but he seems to be progressing. So hopefully we’ll have him back.”
It’s still likely a long shot that he plays, but after yesterday’s loss and combined with Mangold’s toughness and competitiveness you can bet Mangold will be lobbying all week for them to let him play.
Cromartie had a brutal day yesterday, four defensive penalties and the fumble that basically sealed the game for the Raiders, but as painful as his performance was it’s a safe bet to say he was in more pain as he was rushed to the hospital.
“I think he’s more day-to-day right now. We’ll see how he progresses. Hopefully he’ll be out there Wednesday. I think he said it was a bruised rib and a bruised lung.” Ryan said, “So, I’m sure it’s painful right now, hard for him to take a real deep breath. But you know these young guys recover quick. What would take an average guy a couple of weeks, I think these guys bounce back generally.”
Cromartie and Sanchez took a beating, but this is the NFL that happens every week, both of them are expected to play and depending who you ask so is Mangold. Ask most people and they are likely to say doubtful, but ask Mangold and he’ll certainly try and convince you he can and will. But not all the injured Jets were so lucky as Cumberland tore his Achilles and is out for the rest of the season, leaving the Jets newly Tom Moore influenced offense short a tight-end.
“Yeah well see what’s out there. But yeah unfortunately Jeff’s been lost for the year, tore his Achilles… That’s unfortunate (and) we’ll see whose out there for us.”
Ryan expanded on the thought of looking to bring in a replacement tight-end, but admitted at this point in the season the pickings will be slim saying, “I know there’s a couple of guys we really like, but they’re injured.” Most likely Josh Baker will find himself being moved to the active roster and given a chance to contribute to a team in need.
Injuries are a part of the game, nothing can be done to fully prevent injuries in this league. All teams have to deal with them, they just have to shake them off and play through it and with these next two games coming up for the Jets, shake it off and play through it is exactly what they have to do.