By Tyson Rauch
The New York Jets offense has been put under the microscope following the unit’s disappointing performance against the Tennessee Titans. After evaluating the unit it appears that every position contributed to the offensive failures starting with rookie quarterback Geno Smith. The young signal caller has battled issues with turnovers and decision making while the playmakers around him have struggled with consistency. It is going to take a collective effort for the Jets offense to improve on Monday night against the Atlanta Falcons and now there is a new element that the offense must contend with: injuries.
The New York Jets will be without wide receiver Santonio Holmes on Monday as the veteran is dealing with a hamstring issue. This is a huge blow to the Jets offense as Holmes is Gang Green’s best receiver and a player that could take over a game as evidenced against the Buffalo Bills (5 catches, 154 yards, 1 touchdown). Gang Green could also be without wide receiver Stephen Hill who is recovering from a concussion suffered against the Titans.
Bring in the replacements
To say that these injury issues at the wide receiver position are a huge concern is an understatement as the team will have to rely on Clyde Gates, Ryan Spadola, and newly acquired David Nelson to pick up the slack. Gates has struggled this season with his hands and route running, while Spadola is an undrafted free agent that has seen limited action. Nelson is an intriguing veteran player (94 career catches) with his 6’5 frame, but chemistry with Smith could be an early issue.
The injury bug has also hit the running back position as Chris Ivory continues to nurse a hamstring and Mike Goodson (who is returning from suspension) is dealing with some leg issues as well. Bilal Powell, who is tied for the AFC lead in rushing with 292 yards, will continue to be the feature back with Alex Green getting reps if Ivory and Goodson are unable to play.
Rookie defensive back Dee Milliner remains out of practice with a hamstring injury and it seems likely that he will miss Monday night’s game. If Milliner cannot go Darrin Walls will replace him along with Kyle Wilson. This is quickly becoming a lost season for the Jets first round pick.
Did Not Participate In Practice
T Oday Aboushi (knee), WR Santonio Holmes (hamstring), CB Dee Milliner (hamstring)
Limited Participation In Practice
WR Clyde Gates (knee), WR Stephen Hill (concussion), RB Chris Ivory (hamstring), TE Kellen Winslow (knee)
Full Participation In Practice
S Antonio Allen (finger), G Willie Colon (elbow), LB Quinton Coples (ankle), CB Antonio Cromartie (hip), DT Kenrick Ellis (back), LB Garrett McIntyre (shoulder), DT Sheldon Richardson (shoulder), QB Geno Smith (ankle), CB Darrin Walls (shoulder)
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Tyson Rauch is a freelance writer covering all things NFL. His work can be found on Examiner.com.