Ryan, Others Rave About All-Pro Corner, As Their Own Secondary Sits In Shambles

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — Rex Ryan said seeing Darrelle Revis in a Patriots uniform makes him “a little sick to my stomach.”

The New York Jets’ coach was back in a joking mood two days after his team lost its fifth straight. The defensive backfield that Revis used to lead, though, might have him feeling a bit queasy.

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“I think a lot of people talk bad about our secondary,” said cornerback Darrin Walls, one of the players who will have to make up for the absence of starter Dee Milliner against Tom Brady and New England on Thursday night.

Milliner went on season-ending injured reserve Monday after tearing his right Achilles tendon the day before.

Milliner, Dimitri Patterson and Dexter McDougle were supposed to be the Jets’ top three cornerbacks at the start of training camp. Patterson was released after leaving the team without permission and missing a preseason game. McDougle was also lost to a season-ending injury.

The Jets have one interception in six games.

It’s a far cry from the days of “Revis Island.” The Jets will pay their former All-Pro cornerback a visit Thursday when they travel to New England for their AFC East opener.

Ryan didn’t want to draw the ire of the Seattle Seahawks’ Richard Sherman by suggesting that Revis is still the best cornerback in the league, but he’s noticed that Revis seems to be matching up one-on-one with the opponent’s top receiver more and more — just as he did in New York.

“The guy doesn’t have his own nickname for no reason,” backup quarterback Michael Vick said Tuesday.

Ryan and Revis’ former teammates have already gone through the experience of playing against him. His first game with the Buccaneers last season after the trade to Tampa Bay was against the Jets. Revis then signed with the Patriots in the offseason as a free agent.

“I thought it was really weird last year when you saw him opening day, but I don’t know how I will react when I see him over there,” Ryan said.

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The Jets’ secondary must face Brady and Peyton Manning in a five-day span. On Sunday, they played without Milliner for most of the game and managed to keep New York in it, holding Manning to 237 yards passing, well below his average. Manning still had three touchdowns, and the Broncos won 31-17, the last Denver TD scored by its defense.

The news is better for the Jets for the group of receivers that will go against Revis.

Eric Decker, hobbled by a hamstring injury most of the season, said he felt fine after Sunday’s game and was confident he would be OK with the short turnaround. He leads the Jets with 258 yards receiving and three touchdowns despite missing a game.

David Nelson, who was held out Sunday because of an ankle injury, practiced fully Tuesday. So did rookie tight end Jace Amaro, who leads the Jets with 24 catches and was limited Monday by a knee problem.

But Greg Salas, who started at receiver Sunday, didn’t practice Tuesday because of wrist and ankle injuries and had a cast on the wrist. Ryan said it “doesn’t look real good” that Salas will play Thursday.

Ryan said the Jets did some game-planning for the Patriots during training camp knowing that the short week awaited. They never could have predicted the season would already feel as though it was slipping away in Week 7.

“Very desperate,” defensive lineman Sheldon Richardson said of his mindset. “Hoping everybody feels like me.”

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