Santonio Holmes has strained hammy

Updated: June 12, 2012, 9:21 PM ET
By Rich Cimini | ESPNNewYork.com

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- New York Jets wide receiver Santonio Holmes began minicamp Tuesday in the same place he ended practice last week -- on the sideline.

The Jets' top wide receiver, who created a mini-firestorm last Thursday when he took himself out because he was tired, sat out the first day of minicamp with a tight hamstring, according to Rex Ryan.

Ryan admitted he overworked Holmes -- and the entire receiving corps, for that matter -- during the voluntary workouts, which concluded last week. The Jets have suffered a rash of hamstring injuries at the position.

"Obviously, I pushed the wideout group, in particular, a little too hard," Ryan said before Tuesday's practice session. "... That's a mistake I made."

The Jets opened the mandatory minicamp with every player in attendance, including safety LaRon Landry, who skipped the voluntary workouts as he rehabbed a non-surgical Achilles tendon injury from last season. Landry didn't practice, but the team is hopeful he will be ready to go for training camp.

The highly scrutinized quarterback position remained unchanged, with Mark Sanchez working exclusively with the starting unit and Tim Tebow with the second team. Neither player impressed in an overall sloppy day for the offense.

Holmes made headlines last Thursday, when he walked off the field near the end of practice and tossed his helmet. Afterward, he told reporters the coaches gave him "too many reps." He insisted that he wasn't hurt. But, according to Ryan, they knew immediately that Holmes had complained of "tightness" in his hamstring.

That was his third OTA practice after returning from a USO-sponsored trip to Germany, where he visited injured troops at a U.S. Air Force base. Holmes missed four practices during the trip.

"When he went to Germany, I thought that was a real positive thing," Ryan said earlier Tuesday. "Anytime our players and coaches have a chance to do something great for our country, then go for it."

New offensive coordinator Tony Sparano downplayed last week's incident, claiming that Holmes and the coaches were on the same page. "I don't think there was any kind of miscommunication or any of those things," he said after practice Tuesday. "I don't get involved in 'he said, she said.' The one thing you will know, and my players know: I know exactly how many reps every player has taken, period."

Holmes declined comment when approached in the locker room by reporters Tuesday afternoon. During practice, he did agility drills off to the side, even running sprints at one point. But he didn't participate in any positional or team drills.

Aside from Holmes, fellow receivers Jeremy Kerley, Patrick Turner, Chaz Schilens and rookie Stephen Hill are battling hamstring issues. In fact, Hill, the impressive second-round pick, didn't practice at all. Kerley and Turner were limited, creating a patchwork receiving corps that obviously affected the performance of the offense.

At the start of the offseason program, Ryan instructed the strength and conditioning coach to create a strenuous weightlifting and conditioning program for the team. After last season's disappointing finish, Ryan's goal was to step up the intensity and the sense of urgency.

Rich Cimini

ESPN New York Jets reporter

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