Woody goes on IR with torn Achilles’ tendon
FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — Jets coach Rex Ryan noticed that offensive tackle Damien Woody was “wobbling around a little bit’’ after playing all but the final three snaps in last weekend’s playoff victory over the Colts. What he didn’t know was that Woody had torn his left Achilles’ tendon on the final drive in his first appearance after having arthroscopic surgery on his right knee.
“Really unfortunate,’’ Ryan said yesterday, after Woody was put on injured reserve and scheduled for surgery. “It’s tough. He worked his tail off to get back.
“He has a great challenge in front of him in Robert Mathis, did a great job in that game, now he’s getting ready to play his old team and what all that represents.’’
Stepping in on the right side will be Wayne Hunter, who started the final three games of the season when Woody was sidelined.
The good news for the Jets was that quarterback Mark Sanchez, who has been bothered by a sore right shoulder since landing on it in Pittsburgh Dec. 19, was back at full throttle yesterday.
“Honestly, it feels the best it’s felt in three or four weeks,’’ reported Sanchez, who has a slight cartilage tear. “I was full-practice today for the first time in a while, and that was huge.’’
Other injured starters who went the distance were cornerback Antonio Cromartie (groin), center Nick Mangold (shoulder), nose tackle Sione Pouha (back), fullback Tony Richardson (finger), and linebacker Bryan Thomas (ankle).
Cornerback Darrelle Revis (hamstring) was limited and guard Brandon Moore (back) did not participate.
Getting ahead What is Item No. 1 in the Jets’ game plan for Sunday? Don’t fall behind, 17-0, in the first quarter, as they did in last month’s rout at The Razor. “We’ve got to stay on track,’’ said receiver Braylon Edwards. “We can’t play their game. We can’t let them dictate what happens. We’ve got to do the things that we know we can do. If we have to play somebody else’s game, that’s when we get in trouble and we have to pull these fourth-quarter comebacks out of nowhere. A team like that may not give you a chance to make a comeback even worth talking about. So we’ve got to stay ahead.’’ Indeed, in the last 16 meetings, the Patriots have scored first 15 times.
Worst-laid plans Though the Jets players primarily blame themselves for that 45-3 bludgeoning (“We got embarrassed,’’ said Revis. “We didn’t play up to our standard.’’), Ryan readily admits that his “unrealistic’’ game plan proved fatal. “When I look back on it, we don’t need to trick them, we need to outplay them,’’ he said. “We have to give our guys a chance. Obviously there are chess matches involved every week but it was checkmate. [Bill Belichick] definitely outcoached me.’’ Ryan has no hard feelings about New England tacking on 14 fourth-quarter points to a 31-3 lead. “We’d try to do the same thing,’’ he said. “We’d pour it on them. It’s our job to stop them. What are they supposed to do — kneel on it when there’s 10 minutes left in the game?’’
Making good use The Jets aren’t surprised that former teammate Danny Woodhead has been reborn in Foxborough after being tossed on the Meadowlands scrap heap. “They’ve used him exactly how you should use him and how he feels he should be used,’’ said safety Dwight Lowery. “He’s able to go out and execute his job that much better. They put guys in positions to succeed and do what they do best. Danny’s a tough matchup because he’s real small. When he’s running the ball, you can’t see him. He’s short and offensive linemen are huge. You’re looking for him and by the time you find him, he’s already up the field.’’ . . . So, what’s behind Ryan’s sweater-vest look on the sideline? “I was trying to cover up the boiler and I thought that was the best way to do it,’’ he said. “It is a style that should be copied, don’t you think?
John Powers can be reached at email@example.com.