Jets’ Hill cleared to play; Winslow could sit

Updated: October 5, 2013, 4:36 PM ET

Rich Cimini |

Six days after sustaining a concussion, wide receiver Stephen Hill was medically cleared for contact Saturday and is expected to play Monday night when the New York Jets face the Atlanta Falcons at the Georgia Dome.

But the Jets could be without their leading receiver, tight end Kellen Winslow, who didn’t practice and is listed as questionable. Winslow, hampered by chronic knee pain in recent years, usually gets a day off during the week, but he sat three of four practices this week.

Hill suffered a concussion on the second play of last week’s game on a shoulder-to-chin hit by Titans safety Michael Griffin, who was fined $21,000 by the league for an illegal hit. Hill walked off slowly and didn’t return to the game. On Friday, he returned to practice wearing the red (non-contact) jersey, as mandated by league rules. He practiced fully on Saturday.

As expected, the Jets won’t have wide receiver Santonio Holmes, who was ruled out with a significant hamstring injury. It’ll be a patchwork receiving corps, especially if Clyde Gates, who sat out Saturday with knee soreness, doesn’t play. He’s questionable.

The Jets (2-2) could end up fielding a receiving group of Hill, Jeremy Kerley and David Nelson, who was signed Tuesday as a free agent. On Saturday, they swapped No. 5 receivers, signing Michael Campbell from the practice squad and releasing Ryan Spadola.

The good news for the Jets is they will be healthier in the backfield than at any point this season. Mike Goodson, who served a four-game suspension for violating the league’s substance-abuse policy, was added to the 53-man roster and is expected to make his Jets debut. He’s listed as probable, as is Chris Ivory, who sat out last week with a pulled hamstring.

Goodson could take over the kickoff-returning duties if Gates is out. This could be a difficult challenge for quarterback Geno Smith and the Jets’ offense, which committed four turnovers in last week’s 38-13 loss to the Tennessee Titans — all by the rookie quarterback. Because of injuries, only three players in the regular rotation practiced every day this week.

The Jets would miss Winslow, who leads the team with 16 receptions for 168 yards and a touchdown. They knew he was a medical risk, considering his history of knee surgeries. Concern over Winslow may have factored into the decision to claim former New England Patriots tight end Zach Sudfeld on Friday.

As expected, rookie cornerback Dee Milliner was ruled out for the second straight week with a pulled hamstring.

To make room for Goodson, the Jets waived linebacker Ricky Sapp.

  • Longtime Jets beat writer for New York Daily News
  • Syracuse University graduate

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