NY Jets could be without key defensive starter after late injury

The Jets might be down a key member of their secondary on Sunday
NY Jets, Michael Carter II
NY Jets, Michael Carter II / Jim McIsaac/GettyImages

The NY Jets made a late addition to their injury report on Saturday, listing starting nickel cornerback Michael Carter II as questionable with a hamstring injury.

It's unclear when Carter sustained the injury, but his status for the team's Week 11 matchup with the Buffalo Bills is very much up in the air. That could prove troublesome for the Jets secondary.

Carter was a full participant in practice all week and was not listed on the injury report. That seems to suggest that Carter may have sustained the injury during Friday's practice.

He joins defensive end Will McDonald (ankle) and wide receiver Garrett Wilson (elbow) as Jets players listed as questionable for Sunday's game. Offensive tackle Duane Brown, offensive lineman Billy Turner, tight end Kenny Yeboah, linebacker Chazz Surratt, and linebacker Sam Eguavoen are all out for Week 11.

What would the NY Jets do if Michael Carter II is out due to injury?

A late addition to the injury report is never a good thing for any player. There's a very real possibility that Carter is unable to play on Sunday. That could leave the Jets shorthanded in the secondary.

Brandin Echols is the most likely player to take over Carter's role as the starting nickel cornerback. The Jets also have Bryce Hall on the active roster, although he has only played three snaps in the slot all year.

Other options include safeties Ashtyn Davis and Adrian Amos, as well as rookie defensive back Jarrick Bernard-Converse. Bernard-Converse missed the first half of the season with an injury but could be in line to make his NFL debut on Sunday if Carter doesn't play.

The Jets could also consider elevating cornerbacks Tae Hayes or Kalon Barnes from the practice squad. Craig James, who filled in for injuries earlier in the season, was released by the Jets this past week.

Ultimately, the most likely scenario (if Carter is unable to play) will see the Jets start Echols in Carter's place while Bernard-Converse is active for his first game. It's not ideal, but the Jets have the secondary depth to survive without their standout nickel cornerback.

We'll find out more about Carter's status tomorrow, but for now, assume there's a good chance he doesn't play on Sunday.