Jets' Fitzpatrick questionable, will be game-time decision
FLORHAM PARK, N.J. (AP) The New York Jets are giving Ryan Fitzpatrick's sprained left knee a few more days to get ready.
Fitzpatrick will be a game-time decision to play against the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday after being listed as questionable Friday.
''He's getting better than he was,'' coach Todd Bowles said. ''I still have to see him work out Sunday to make that decision.''
Fitzpatrick injured his left knee at Miami last Sunday during New York's 27-23 loss. He participated on a limited basis during all three practice sessions this week.
''If he's healthy, you'd like to see him practice fully,'' Bowles said. ''He's injured, so we have to see how he feels. He has two more days to heal.''
Both Fitzpatrick and backup Bryce Petty split the first-team snaps evenly during practice throughout the week.
Petty, a fourth-rounder last year, will get his first NFL start if Fitzpatrick is unable to play. He went 2 of 2 for 19 yards when he briefly relieved Fitzpatrick, who returned to the game and finished.
''I definitely don't take this for granted because I could have been in a whole lot of different scenarios,'' Petty said. ''I'm having a blast where I'm at right now. If it happens, great, I'll be ready to take over and produce.''
Petty appeared to be on the roster bubble during training camp, behind both Fitzpatrick and Geno Smith. The Jets also drafted Christian Hackenberg in the second round, so Petty's future with the team was in doubt. He injured his right shoulder in the preseason finale and sat out the first several weeks of the regular season while recovering.
With Smith out for the season with a knee injury and Hackenberg still learning the ropes, Petty has gone from odd man out to potential starter.
''I've kind of been in this role before, being the backup,'' Petty said. ''When I got called up a couple of weeks ago, as far as just being active, you get to do some reps with the team, and it's not just looking at a game plan at a desk anymore. You actually get to see it, and that's big.''
As expected, center Nick Mangold has been ruled out for the third straight game with a sprained right ankle. Wesley Johnson will again start in place of Mangold, who had never previously missed more than two games in a row in his 11-year career.
Also ruled out were linebackers Bruce Carter (quadriceps) and Josh Martin (concussion), cornerback Marcus Williams (ankle) and tight end Kellen Davis (elbow).
Cornerback Buster Skrine (knee) and offensive tackle Brandon Shell (shoulder) were both limited and listed as questionable.
Linebacker Darron Lee, the Jets' first-round draft pick, will return after missing three games with a sprained ankle. He was a full participant in practice after being limited Thursday and sitting out Wednesday.
Lee was leading the team in tackles with 35 at the time of his injury, and will slide back into a starting inside linebacker spot opposite David Harris. The former Ohio State star knew as soon as he was injured at Arizona on Oct. 17 that he would miss a few weeks.
''After the first 15 seconds, I was like, `Yeah, this is going to be pretty bad. It's going to keep me out,''' Lee recalled. ''Aside from the fact that it hurt really, really, really bad, I'm just happy nothing broke. I'm happy it was just a simple sprain.''
Lee insisted he is fully healed from the injury and ready to play.
''I wouldn't come back if I thought it was going to linger,'' he said.
Wide receiver Devin Smith could make his season debut after missing the first nine games while recovering from a torn knee ligament last December that cut short his rookie year. Smith was activated from the physically unable to perform list Wednesday after practicing with the team for three weeks. If fully healthy, Smith could provide a speedy downfield threat for the Jets.
''We'll work him in slowly and we'll see if he fits in Sunday or not,'' Bowles said. ''I'm not going to reveal whether he's playing or not playing, but we're working him getting back into the offense.''
NOTES: After an early-season lull, RB Matt Forte has 349 yards from scrimmage and five TDs in his last three games while ranking seventh in the NFL with 634 yards rushing. ''It's pretty simple if you just watch the film,'' Forte said of his improved performance. ''There are holes there (on the offensive line).'' ... Bowles on DL Anthony Johnson, signed this week off New England's practice squad and replacing veteran Jarvis Jenkins: ''He's a swing defensive end, slash-nickel 4-3, 3-4-slash defensive end. Very active, very good in the run game. He has enough quickness to play some pass rusher and possibly a little bit at outside linebacker. His versatility was key.''
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