Jets’ Sanchez aiming to be back for Week 1
Mark Sanchez is hoping to return for the start of the regular
The New York Jets quarterback, dealing with a shoulder injury,
rode a stationary bike at practice Monday but didn’t participate in
any throwing drills. He has been ruled out for the team’s final
preseason game Thursday against Philadelphia, and won’t practice
until Friday at the earliest.
”I’m a little sore,” Sanchez said. ”I have an injured
shoulder here, so I’ll just take it day to day and keep rehabbing
and try to get back as soon as possible.”
During the 30-minute window that reporters are allowed to watch,
Sanchez was among a group off to the side of the practice field and
had his right arm at his side as he pedaled.
Neither Sanchez nor coach Rex Ryan would go into details of the
injury or the rehabilitation process. The Jets announced Sunday
only that Sanchez is ”day-to-day” with an injured shoulder.
Still, Sanchez is hoping to be ready to go when the team opens
the regular season at home on Sept. 8 against the Tampa Bay
”That’s in all of our plans,” he said. ”I’m trying to get
back as soon as possible, and be able to practice as soon as
Sanchez, who appeared in good shape to beat out rookie Geno
Smith for the starting job, was hurt late in the fourth quarter
when he took a hard hit in the shoulder from Giants defensive
lineman Marvin Austin after he completed a pass.
Sanchez stayed on the turf, clutching his shoulder and writhing
in pain for a few moments as the team’s trainers ran out to check
on him. When he eventually got up, the quarterback flexed his right
arm and hand as he headed to the sideline. He took a practice throw
on the sideline and appeared to shake his head ”No.” Trainers
wrapped his shoulder in ice before taking him to the locker
Ryan has taken a lot of heat from media and fans since making
the decision to bringing in Sanchez that late in the game behind an
offensive line made up of backups. It also appeared Sanchez was a
bit surprised on the sideline to come into the game at that
”If they call your number, you got to play,” he said. ”That’s
what I do and that’s what I’ve always done. They said to be ready
to play and I was ready to play.”
Both Ryan and Smith said that was the plan all along, to have
Sanchez follow the rookie during the game. While it was the
second-team offense, it was similar to the line Sanchez played with
in the third quarter of last week’s win over Jacksonville. It still
seemed somewhat curious why Sanchez – who many assumed had moved
ahead in the competition – would be put in at that point.
”I’m a competitor,” Sanchez said. ”And, as a player, it’s not
my job to worry about when you’re going in or who’s in, whatever,
what string, this or that. If they call your number, you’ve got to
play. That’s what I do, and that’s what I’ve always done.”
Sanchez also refused to criticize Ryan’s decision to play him
when he did.
”I’m not here to second-guess the coaches,” he said. ”If they
call you to play, you better be ready to play. And I was.”
Ryan reiterated that he didn’t think he had made a mistake
playing Sanchez when he did. After the game, the coach insisted
that if it wasn’t ”important,” he wouldn’t have put him in.
”You guys know exactly how I feel about that,” Ryan said. ”Do
I regret that he got injured? Of course. But, no, again – I’m not
going to say anything more about it because I think I’ve covered it
AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org