Jets return to work after bye

October, 31, 2011
10/31/11
6:00
AM ET
After an extended bye week -- six days with no practice -- the Jets are back to work Monday morning in Florham Park, N.J. Six things to know as they begin preparation for a critical road game against the Bills (5-2):

1. On Monday, the Jets will have a chip-off-the-rust practice, followed by their usual Tuesday off and normal game prep starting Wednesday.

2. LB David Harris and rookie NT Kenrick Ellis both sprained ankles in last week's win over the Chargers, but neither injury is believed to be serious. The injured player to watch is DT Mike DeVito (sprained knee), who missed the last game. A week ago, Rex Ryan said he was optimistic that DeVito would be back for the Bills.

3. After cutting backup C Colin Baxter last week, the Jets have an opening on their 53-man roster. They could fill it with former Bills TE Shawn Nelson, who worked out last week and tweeted about signing with the Jets.

4. On Sunday, there was a reversal in the post-bye trend. Before Week 8, teams coming off their bye were 3-9, but the script was flipped. Teams were 4-1 before Sunday night's Eagles-Cowboys game.

5. Sunday's Jets-Bills game is a rarity in this rivalry -- in other words, a meaningful game for both teams. This will mark only the third time since 2000 that both teams will face each other with a winning record. It happened in 2008 (both teams were 4-3, the Jets won) and in 2000 (both teams were 2-0, the Jets won). The last time the Bills had the better record? You have to go back to 2005, but that was hardly a must-see showdown. The Bills were 5-10, the Jets 3-12 in Herm Edwards' final game as coach.

6. The AFC East got tighter Sunday as the Jets sat back and watched. The first-place Patriots (5-2) fell to the Steelers, meaning the Jets are only one game behind the co-leaders. If the Jets beat the Bills, and the Giants do them a favor by winning in New England, there will be a three-way tie.

Rich Cimini

ESPN New York Jets reporter

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