Sauce Gardner and D.J. Reed each cleared concussion protocol and will play for the New York Jets in Week 8 against the New York Giants.
That’s huge news since the Jets have not had their starting cornerbacks on the field together since a Week 4 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs. Reed missed two games with a concussion, and Gardner missed one with the same injury, ahead of the Jets bye last week.
It was surprising that neither Gardner nor Reed cleared protocol coming out of the bye. But the corners returned to practice in a limited basis Wednesday and were cleared to play Friday.
“It does a lot for the flexibility on the defense (having Gardner and Reed back),” coach Robert Saleh explained. “It allows you to do a couple things you wouldn’t without those two guys.”
Robert Saleh announces that Sauce Gardner and DJ Reed have cleared concussion protocol pic.twitter.com/rPU7r6Nb8X
— Jets Videos (@snyjets) October 27, 2023
Gardner is the reigning NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year who was an All-Pro in his first season. Reed is also considered to be one of the top corners in the League.
The Jets (3-3) won each game without Reed as Bryce Hall stepped up in his place. Hall had a game-sealing fumble return for a TD against the Denver Broncos in Game 5 and intercepted Jalen Hurts in Week6 against the Philadelphia Eagles.
The #Jets hold on Bryce Hall TD
— SportsCastProductions (@SportsCastProd0) October 8, 2023
Backup corner Brandin Echols, who’s been sidelined with a hamstring injury is also expected back this week. But nickelback Michael Carter II will be limited in practice Friday.
Saleh confirmed that rookie guard Joe Tippmann is out with a quad injury for the Giants game. Likely he’ll be replaced by veteran Wes Schweitzer. Wide receiver and special teams demon Irv Charles is doubtful Sunday and wide receiver Randall Cobb is limited in practice Friday.