Buzz: Po’uha “Very Iffy” For Sunday
Bent , theJetsBlog.com
Worrying news from Rex this afternoon, via Rich Cimini:
Starting NT Sione Po’hua, who hasn’t practiced since the first week of training camp because of a back injury, is in danger of missing the season opener Sunday against the Bills.
“I’m still not real sure about Sione,” Rex Ryan said Monday before practice.
Po’hua indicated early in the preseason that his target was the season opener, adding at the time he was “100 confident” he’d be ready. He reiterated that last week, but reality is setting in now that the game is only six days away.
Ryan sounded concerned about Po’hua playing nose tackle, arguably the most physically demanding position on the field, after so much lost practice time. He also is worried about Po’hua aggravating the injury. Po’hua hasn’t revealed the specific diagnosis, saying only that it’s a stiff back.
“Backs are tricky,” Ryan said. “If you go out there too early and have a setback, it can really set you back. He’s been getting better … but he hasn’t practiced football. I don’t want to say he’s ready to go, playing that position. I don’t know.”
Cimini makes a good point that the Jets aren’t expected to be in their base defense very often on Sunday because of the Bills’ spread formations. Kenrick Ellis would start in his place with Mike DeVito also an option at nose tackle and youngsters Damon Harrison and Isaako Aaitui waiting in the wings.
In other injury news, Cimini reports that Dustin Keller “is likely to play”, David Harris is “fine” and Joe McKnight “told Ryan he’d be ready to play”. Eric Smith was also with the rehab group at practice today, but Po’uha and Bryan Thomas did participate in practice.