Jets’ Harvin, Mangold game-time decisions at Miami
FLORHAM PARK, N.J. (AP)—Percy Harvin gingerly slipped a T-shirt over his head, his tender ribs still clearly bothering him.
Despite the pain, the New York Jets wide receiver plans to play in the team’s season finale against the Dolphins in Miami.
“It’s a little sore, but I think I’m good enough to give it a go,” Harvin said Friday. “The biggest thing is pain tolerance. I think I’ll be able to handle it pretty well. I just feel like I’m good enough to give it a try, and I’m going in feeling like I’m going to play.”
Harvin was limited in practice, but it was the first time he participated in team drills this week after getting hurt last Sunday against New England.
“I was able to move around, catch a few balls,” Harvin said. “I ran a few routes.”
Coach Rex Ryan said Harvin would be a game-time decision Sunday, along with Pro Bowl center Nick Mangold who has a high left ankle sprain. Both were listed as questionable on the team’s injury report.
“We’ll see,” Ryan said. “I guess we’ll travel (Mangold) and see how he is, both him and Percy, before the game.”
Mangold was carted off the field in the second quarter last Sunday, and he initially feared his ankle was broken. Tests revealed it was a high sprain, and Ryan said he was “very limited” during practice Friday. Mangold would be replaced by Dalton Freeman at center if he can’t play.
“I’m confident that he can handle it mentally, and then the physical part of it,” Ryan said. “I’m not expecting him to go in and be Nick Mangold. I mean you’re talking about a Pro Bowl center, so that’s not going to happen. But I know we’ll get everything he has.”
In what could have been the team’s final full practice under Ryan, a few players sat out with illnesses and were listed as questionable, including defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson nose tackle Damon Harrison and safety Dawan Landry
“They had temperatures, they had all this type of stuff,” Ryan said, “so hopefully we can get it knocked out and they’ll be ready to go.”
Because of the injuries and illnesses, Ryan said the practice wasn’t very good as they prepared to face their AFC East rivals.
“It just never felt sharp, whether it was coming back off Christmas or what, I don’t know,” he said. “It just wasn’t as sharp as most Fridays have been.”
While Ryan’s future with the franchise uncertain beyond Sunday’s game, the coach wasn’t overly reflective or nostalgic on the field thinking it could be his last full practice with the Jets. He was asked, though, if he thought he accomplished what he set out to do when he was hired in 2009.
“I mean, the ultimate goal is, and you do this to win it all,” he said. “There’s no doubt about that. So, obviously, I have come up short there, that way. As far as all of the other stuff is concerned and things, I came in and I wanted to give a different identity to this team and I think we did accomplish that.”
The Jets haven’t made the playoffs in four straight seasons, and this year’s team has struggled through a 3-12 campaign that could result in both Ryan and general manager John Idzik getting fired next week. Through it all, though, Ryan insisted he still had fun this season.
“Of course, I have the greatest job in America,” he said. “You’re a head coach in the National Football League and you get to come to work every day and work with a lot of great people. You get to be a kid. It’s a kid’s game. I know it’s a multi-billion dollar industry, but it is still a kid’s game. I’m not good enough to play in it, but I am good enough to coach in it. It’s great.
“There’s no better job than the job that this is.”
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