Jets rule out Sauce Gardner (concussion) for Eagles game

ByRich Cimini ESPN logo
Sunday, October 15, 2023

The New York Jets suffered a significant blow on defense, as Pro Bowl cornerback Sauce Gardner was ruled out Saturday with a concussion.

The Jets will face the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday without their starting corners, Gardner and D.J. Reed, who was previously declared out with a concussion. Dime back Brandin Echols (hamstring) also is out, leaving the secondary in shambles as it prepares to face the high-powered receiving tandem of A.J. Brown and DeVonta Smith.

The likely starters will be Bryce Hall and Craig James, who was elevated Saturday from the practice squad. Hall replaced Reed last week and scored the game-clinching touchdown on a fumble recovery in the fourth quarter. Michael Carter II will be the slot corner and could see some time in base packages.

The only other corner on the roster is Tae Hayes, who was elevated from the practice squad.

Gardner, the 2022 NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year, showed up Friday on the injury report with what the team termed an "illness." He practiced Wednesday and Thursday but not Friday. Coach Robert Saleh told reporters Friday that Gardner was expected to be fine.

"I feel perfectly fine. That's the crazy part about it," Gardner posted Saturday on X, formerly known as Twitter.

The injuries are mounting for the Jets, who already have lost quarterback Aaron Rodgers (Achilles) and tackle Alijah Vera-Tucker (Achilles) to season-ending injuries. Earlier Saturday, Pro Bowl special teams player Justin Hardee was placed on injured reserve after hamstring surgery Friday.

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