It’s been a roller-coaster season of learning for second-round rookie WR Stephen Hill. Just a few weeks ago he talked about what he had planned for the last month of his first pro season.
“I just want to finish this season as hard as I can,” said the tall, fast, earnest young man from Georgia Tech. “I know a little more about what it takes to be great, or greater. I’m going to take that from today and try to build on that every day from today on into the offseason.”
Today Hill learned that he would be spending the final two weeks of the regular season on injured reserve with his knee injury.
The 6’4″, 215-pounder began the season with incredible promise, becoming the first Jet ever to debut with two touchdown catches in his first game in green and white against the Bills on opening day.
But those five catches for 89 yards and two TDs would be the high point of his inaugural season in the play-for-pay league. He had four receptions for 55 yards at New England and 5-for-40 in the 7-6 win over Arizona. But he also had several drops, two in the end zone and one late at Gillette Field that, had he caught it, likely would have iced an upset win over the Patriots.
He fought his way through calf, hamstring and ankle injuries and illness to post 21 catches for 252 yards (12.0 avg.) and three TDs. His last contribution to the cause came on the play on which he reinjured his knee, when he was pulled down by CB Derek Cox to draw a 14-yard pass interference penalty in the second quarter at Jacksonville.
Hill left EverBank Field that day limping only slightly and with an electro-stim device connected to his knee, smiling and talking optimistically about getting back quickly from this latest physical setback. But the progress had been slow, with head coach Rex Ryan saying this morning that Hill wouldn’t practice today at the Atlantic Health Training Center and adding that “He’s not going to be able to go” on Sunday against San Diego.
With the arrival off waivers last week of WR Braylon Edwards, his contribution on a week’s work at Tennessee, and the good condition of his sore hamstring, the Jets decided late today to place Hill on IR. Taking his place on the active roster is CB Donnie Fletcher, signed for the second time this season off the Jets’ practice squad.
Hill becomes the eighth player to go on IR in this painful Jets season, following CB Darrelle Revis, WR Santonio Holmes, LB Josh Mauga, CB Isaiah Trufant, TE Dedrick Epps, FB-TE Josh Baker and CB Royce Adams.
Wednesday Injury Reports
Going on IR, Hill is no longer on the Jets’ I-report, but 20 players were listed today for the Chargers game.
Four players did not practice. Ryan said of the availability of TE Dustin Keller (ankle) for Sunday, “I’m not real sure. I’ll lean on the trainers for that.” G Brandon Moore (hip/foot) is a DNP because “off a short week, I think we’re just giving him a day, pretty much.” WR Chaz Schilens (knee/calf) “did finish the game, so we’ll see about him.” And Ryan said he’s “concerned” with CB Aaron Berry (hamstring).
The Jets’ five limited players are all working through previous injuries: WR Braylon Edwards (hamstring), S LaRon Landry (heel), DT Sione Po‘uha (low back), LB Ricky Sapp (ankle) and LB Bryan Thomas (chest). The other 11 players were all full-go today.
The Chargers listed eight players: Did Not Practice — DT Aubrayo Franklin (knee), LB Takeo Spikes (hamstring). Limited — RB Ronnie Brown (hamstring), LB Donald Butler (groin), LB Demorrio Williams (ankle). Full — T Jeromey Clary (knee), G Tyronne Green (hamstring), WR Eddie Royal (hamstring).
Tags: Braylon Edwards, Darrelle Revis, Derek Cox, Donnie Fletcher, Rex Ryan, Santonio Holmes, Stephen Hill
Posted in Randy Lange | 55 Comments »
The Jets have entered Phase III.
The Jets began their Organized Team Activities (a.k.a. OTAs) today at the Atlantic Health Jets Training Center. This is the start of Phase III on the Jets’ offseason calendar for bringing players together and building toward the veteran minicamp June 12-14 and the return to Cortland, N.Y., for training camp. Other teams have started their OTAs either last week, this week or next week. The Jets’ OTAs will run for three days a week over the next three weeks before minicamp week.
And because the weather was quite wet at the start of the day here in northern New Jersey, this first voluntary practice took place in the team’s fieldhouse.
There is no media availability until Thursday this week. But it sounds as if WR Santonio Holmes was in the building and enjoying himself. As he tweeted on his certified Twitter account:
Great 1st day on the field as a whole unit. Looking forward to big things this year GO JETS!
Independent of the practice, we have some news from the numerology department: With the addition of Yeremiah Bell to the roster comes a small game of uniform dominoes.
Bell, who wore No. 37 for his entire eight seasons with the Aqua & Coral (Dolphins), will wear 37 again this season for the Green & White.
S Tracy Wilson, who wore No. 37 for the Jets last season, has downshifted to No. 36. And undrafted free agent CB Donnie Fletcher, who wore 36 at the rookie minicamp two-plus weeks ago, has moved on to No. 34.
Tags: Donnie Fletcher, OTAs, Santonio Holmes, Tracy Wilson, Yeremiah Bell
Posted in Randy Lange | 175 Comments »