Bad start for McKnight

July, 25, 2013
7/25/13
8:49
PM ET
CORTLAND, N.Y. -- Two months ago, Joe McKnight issued a defiant response when asked if he was worried about his place on the roster, claiming, "They're gonna have to kill me to take my spot."

[+] EnlargeJoe McKnight
Ed Mulholland/USA TODAY SportsJoe McKnight is on the PUP list until he passes a conditioning test.
Turns out that he could be hurting himself.

Before leaving for Cortland, the Jets held their conditioning test in Florham Park -- and McKnight flunked, according to a source. As a result, he was placed on the non-football injury list. As soon as he passes the test, he'll be activated. It's not unusual for an offensive lineman to fail, but a running back?

This wasn't a good start for McKnight, who is hoping to have an expanded role in the revamped backfield. In minicamp, he said he dropped weight, with the hope of improving his quickness. It was a departure from two years ago, when he added weight (thanks to a diet of McDonald's) to help his durability.

Without McKnight and Mike Goodson (reserve/did not report), the Jets have only two healthy running backs with experience, Chris Ivory and Bilal Powell.

ROSTER MOVES: The Jets waived WR Thomas Mayo from injured reserve and waived DL Jake McDonough with an injury settlement.

HEEERE'S REX: Rex Ryan didn't show up making bold predictions, that's for sure. He avoided a question on whether the Jets have enough talent to make the playoffs, saying, "Every single team is talented, including us." He mentioned parity in the NFL. Booooring.

Ryan was scheduled to deliver his annual Day 1 speech to the team on Thursday night. He said his themes in the speech would be teamwork and competition.

Speaking to reporters, Ryan dodged questions about this being a make-or-break year for him.

"I never took this job for job security," he said. "I would've been in a different line of work if that had been the case."

LOW EXPECTATIONS: Expectations for the Jets haven't been this low since ... well, you probably have to go back to 2006, Eric Mangini's first season. Naturally, they shrugged off the bleak predictions.

"I don't pay attention to projections because they don't mean squat in December," C Nick Mangold said.

QB Mark Sanchez echoed that sentiment, saying, "Outside expectations don't mean anything to us."

ODDS AND ENDS: The Jets could have a few veterans on "pitch counts" in practice, meaning limited reps. Ryan mentioned WR Braylon Edwards, TE Kellen Winslow and G Willie Colon. ... Sanchez spent time before camp working out at his alma mater, USC, where he threw passes to Calvin Johnson and Demaryius Thomas. ... Sanchez is rooming with Mangold for the first time. Previously, Mangold's roommate at camp was G Brandon Moore. ... Moore, currently a free agent, shot down a report that he's planning to retire. "I'm in shape and ready to go," he told ESPNNewYork.com in a text message. Moore is waiting for the right opportunity.

Rich Cimini

ESPN New York Jets reporter

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