The Jets’ rushing attack took one step forward Sunday and then got pushed two steps back Monday.
Tests revealed that rookie running back Michael Carter has a high-ankle sprain that will keep him out “a couple of weeks,” Jets coach Robert Saleh said. Saleh said the sprain is low grade, but high-ankle sprains often take a while to recover from.
Carter was having a good game Sunday against the Dolphins before the injury occurred in the third quarter. He had 63 rushing yards on nine carries, including a season-long, 39-yard run.
“He’s been getting better every week and every time he touches the ball, he makes someone miss,” Saleh said. “If the O-line blocks the run for nothing, he’s finding 3 [yards]. If they block it for 5, he’s finding 8, 9, 10. He’s so dynamic with the ball in his hands, so him missing this time where he can get better, obviously a blow for him. Hopefully we can get him back before the end of the season, to get him some more playing time so he can continue to rack up those reps and hit the ground running this offseason.”
Saleh saying the Jets hope to have back before the end of the season shows how tricky high-ankle sprains can be. There are seven weeks left in the season.
“We’ll know more by the end of the week. But it is a high-ankle sprain,” Saleh said. “So, there’s a lot of things that we’re looking at. It looks like it’s low grade, two-to-four, two-to-three, whatever you want to call it. But we’re going to make sure that he is healthy. Again, another young man, we’re going to make sure that ankle is fully healthy before we rush him back.”
Saleh said the Jets will make a decision Wednesday morning on whether rookie QB Zach Wilson will start this week against the Texans. Wilson has been out since Oct. 24 with a knee injury, missing the last four games. Wilson went through a rigorous workout before Sunday’s game and Saleh said he will do another one Tuesday. They will then see how his knee responds and see if he can return to the lineup.
“No one’s ever said one bad word about Rex in this entire organization,” Saleh said. “They speak glowingly of him and just to be able to have the conversation, I can see why they speak glowingly of him. He actually has a really good heart, and it was good to have that conversation.I’ve always been a fan of him and his defense from afar. So, like I said, it was already behind me from the beginning, but to have that conversation, is kudos to him. He’s shown his character.”
Kicker Matt Ammendola missed two field goals on Sunday and neither Saleh nor special teams coordinator Brant Boyer ruled out making a change at the position when asked about it Monday.
“We’ve got to have points when we’re in those situations and that’s something we’ve got to be better at,” Boyer said.
LT Mekhi Becton (knee) will not return to practice this week, according to Saleh.