A little over an hour before kickoff, the Jets’ list of Week 4 inactives was announced, and two of Mark Sanchez‘s favorite targets have been ruled out and will not play this week.
Starting tight end Dustin Keller (above) will miss his third straight game with a hamstring injury, and rookie wide receiver Stephen Hill will miss his first career game with a hamstring injury as well.
25-year-old Jeff Cumberland will get the start at tight end for the third week in a row, and the Jets will start Chaz Schilens outside at receiver, with Jeremy Kerley remaining in his usual position as the primary slot receiver.
Other inactives for the Jets include third-string quarterback Greg McElroy, defensive tackle Damon Harrison, recently signed running back Jonathan Grimes, guard Caleb Schlauderaff, and the injured Darrelle Revis.
With Keller out against the elite 49ers defense, it’s going to be an extremely challenging game for Sanchez and Tony Sparano, especially after San Francisco showed a vulnerability defending tight ends last week.
On paper, this is going to be a game that will likely see the Jets overmatched on both sides of the ball, and it will take an extraordinary effort for the short-handed Jets to score the upset.
If last week’s game was a game the Jets couldn’t afford to lose, this might be one game on their schedule where they can afford to lose. Losing to a non-conference foe is not the worst thing in the world.
Of course, the Jets will take the field today expecting to win. That’s the attitude they have to have going forward.