FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- After a two-day respite, the New York Jets began on-the-field preparations Thursday for their AFC East showdown Monday night against the New England Patriots -- with only one player not at practice.
Right tackle Damien Woody, who sprained the medial collateral ligament in his right knee two weeks ago, didn't participate in practice. But that probably was a precautionary move, as Woody played every snap in last Thursday's win over the Cincinnati Bengals.
"Oh yeah I'm definitely going to be out there. It's all about being smart from this point forward," Woody said Thursday. "Everything hurts this time of year, nobody's healthy. The mentally and physically tough people step up to the plate."
Rex Ryan also said he expects Woody to play against the Patriots. The Jets still have two more practice days before heading to New England.
Wide receiver Jerricho Cotchery, who has missed two games with a partially torn groin, participated in the early portion of practice. Barring a setback, he's likely to play Monday night. That would give the Jets their usual receiving troika -- Santonio Holmes, Braylon Edwards and Cotchery.
The Jets and Patriots are both 9-2, fighting for the AFC East crown and, possibly, the No. 1 seed in the AFC playoffs. The loser could end up as a No. 5 seed and wild card. That's how much is at stake.