Coming off one of the worst losses in franchise history, the New York Jets suffered another setback Monday with the news that star safety Jamal Adams could be sidelined this week with a sprained ankle.
Adams, who hasn’t missed a game in two-plus seasons, was having an MRI to determine the severity of the injury. Coach Adam Gase declined to say whether it’s a high-ankle sprain, but he called it a “legit week-to-week” injury.
Adams, near tears when he spoke to reporters after Sunday’s 22-6 loss to the previously winless Cincinnati Bengals (1-11), said he was “in a lot of pain” after sustaining the injury on the first series. He played the entire game and left the stadium in a walking boot on his left foot.
Adams is not expected to practice Wednesday, Gase said. Considering the Jets (4-8) are out of playoff contention, they will be cautious with Adams, arguably the best player on the team.
Quarterback Sam Darnold is battling bruised ribs and residual soreness from a previous knee ailment, but his injuries aren’t serious, Gase said.
Gase said there was “a little concern” when they saw Darnold limping near the end of the game, but he said tests showed he’s “OK.” Darnold said the knee is a “nonissue,” adding, “I feel really good physically.”
For now, the biggest worry is Adams, who had only one tackle in the game.
“I’m going to lean on him a lot as far as how he feels,” Gase said. “We want to make sure he’s good to go before we put him back out there. I want to make sure he’s in the right place physically so he can play his style of ball, which is basically he’s the heartbeat of our defense. We want him to be able to go full throttle and he has to feel right to get back out there.”
The Jets face the rejuvenated Miami Dolphins (3-9) on Sunday at MetLife Stadium. In Week 9, the Jets were upset by the then-0-7 Dolphins. By losing to the Bengals, they became the first team in NFL history to lose to two teams 0-7 or worse in the same season.
The Jets also could be without nickelback Brian Poole, who is in the concussion protocol. He was evaluated for a concussion during the game, but was cleared and returned. He complained of symptoms Monday morning, according to Gase.