The Jets got lucky with Zach Wilson’s knee injury earlier this year. They did not enjoy the same outcome with Breece Hall.
The rookie running back and budding star will miss the rest of the season after tearing his ACL in Sunday’s win at the Broncos, according to ESPN. Hall also suffered “a minor meniscus injury.” The second-round pick from Iowa State and had become the betting favorite to win NFL offensive rookie of the year honors through the season’s first six weeks. Hall finishes the season with 681 all-purpose yards and six touchdowns.
Immediate impact. This is undoubtedly a blow to the Jets’ playoff hopes. Hall has been a key contributor during their four-game winning streak and 5-2 start, including a 62-yard touchdown run against Denver before the injury. Wilson needs to be more productive at quarterback. That will be that much tougher to achieve without Hall.
Next man up. Michael Carter has just 14 fewer carries than Hall this season (80 to 66) and has 21 catches to Hall’s 20. So he is used to having a substantial role as he moves up the depth chart. But Carter is averaging over two yards less per carry. He is not the difference-maker Hall is.
Trade? If general manager Joe Douglas wants to make a move before the Nov. 1 deadline, there will be backs available. The Rams’ Cam Akers and the Browns’ Kareem Hunt should be available. There will be other names to consider. The Jets don’t have a war chest of salary cap space, but they do have some flexibility. The real question is whether Douglas wants to give up significant assets to add a back. Does he feel good enough about where the Jets stand to give up a mid-round pick?
James Kratch can be reached at [email protected]