Jets QB Mike White has no doubt he'll play against Lions

ByRich Cimini ESPN logo
Thursday, December 15, 2022

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- The playoff-contending New York Jets play their biggest December game in seven years on Sunday, and quarterback Mike White -- nursing a sore rib -- has no doubt he will be ready to play.

"No, no, none at all," he said Thursday.

White has spent the past few days getting laser and deep-oscillation treatment for his unspecified rib injury, which occurred Sunday on a crushing hit by Buffalo Bills linebacker Matt Milano. White said he expects to wear extra protection against the Detroit Lions at MetLife Stadium but "nothing too crazy."

It will be White's fourth consecutive start since replacing the ineffective Zach Wilson, who will be the No. 2 quarterback Sunday after being inactive for the three previous games. Joe Flacco will be inactive.

Officially, White was hit seven times in the 20-12 loss to the Bills, including two hits that sent him to the sideline. He finished the game, impressing teammates and coaches with his toughness, then was taken to a Buffalo-area hospital for a precautionary CT scan before the flight home.

On Monday, White said he was preparing as if he would start against the Lions (6-7). Two days of practice in cold temperatures appears to have bolstered his confidence. He saidthat the rib feels fine and that he's experiencing "general soreness from playing football and getting hit."

"They just got me on a couple of clean hits," he said of the Bills. "That's really what it is. Hopefully, it's not a recurring theme. I don't know, maybe that could be an offseason project of mine, how I can avoid those hits."

Offensive coordinator Mike LaFleur said he hasn't noticed any ill effects in practice, adding, "Even if he did, he wouldn't say it. He's a tough dude."

The Jets (7-6), losers of two straight, allowed four sacks and 21 pressures last week, according to Next Gen Stats data. LaFleur said the breakdowns were "stuff that we've got to get fixed and fixed fast."

Since taking over for Wilson, White is 1-2 as the starter. He has completed 80 of 129 passes (62%) for 952 yards, with three touchdown passes and two interceptions.

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