Wednesday, September 28, 2011
Jets missing two starters
By Rich Cimini
FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- All-Pro center Nick Mangold and cornerback Antonio Cromartie sat out practice Wednesday as the New York Jets began preparations for a critical road game against the Baltimore Ravens.
Coach Rex Ryan had hoped to see Cromartie on the practice field, but he wasn't in uniform and worked on the side with a trainer during the 30-minute portion open to the media.
"I would think that Cromartie's ahead of Nick, but I'm hopeful both will play," Ryan said. "I'm not real sure, though."
Cromartie, who suffered bruised ribs and a bruised lung in the fourth quarter of Sunday's 34-24 loss to the Oakland Raiders, is considered day to day. He appeared to be moving without any discomfort during agility drills, and the Jets are hopeful that he can play.
If Cromartie is out, the Jets will start Kyle Wilson at cornerback, opposite Darrelle Revis.
Mangold's status is more uncertain than Cromartie's. The leader of the offensive line, who suffered a significant high-ankle sprain in Week 2, didn't travel to Oakland, snapping his streak of 82 consecutive starts.
Like Cromartie, Mangold didn't dress for practice and was limited to light workouts with the trainer. Wearing a brace on his right ankle, he moved tentatively during various agility drills.
Mangold said his injury "seems to be responding well," but he declined to speculate on whether he will play Sunday. He said, "I don't do percentages, I'm not smart enough."
He also said, "We'll find out tomorrow what tomorrow's plan is, and (the same) Friday. It's day to day."
If Mangold can't play, which seems like a distinct possibility, the Jets will start rookie Colin Baxter for the second straight week. Baxter was praised for his performance in Oakland -- he had no penalties and no bad snaps -- but there were a handful of miscommunications on the line in the second half, when the Jets allowed four sacks.
Linebacker David Harris (toe) and defensive lineman Muhammad Wilkerson (shoulder) were limited, but expected to play.
Rich Cimini covers the Jets for ESPNNewYork.com. Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.