The Jets rolled to an easy win over the Chiefs on Sunday, but it didn’t come without a price.
According to a report from Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News, safety Jim Leonhard will miss the rest of the season with a right knee injury. He’ll have an MRI Monday to figure out the extent of the injury, which is suspected to be a torn ligament, but Mehta’s source says the result will be Leonhard’s absence from the lineup the rest of the way.
Leonhard was hurt while trying to run away from Steve Breaston after a first half interception in Sunday’s 37-10 victory. Breaston held onto his ankle, causing Leonhard’s leg to turn awkwardly and it was immediately evident that there was a serious injury on the play.
If the report proves correct, it will be the second straight season that ends early for Leonhard. He broke his leg in practice last season and missed the final five games of the regular season as well as the playoffs as a result.
It’s a big blow to the Jets defense which relies on Leonhard to help set the unit before the snap. They will go with Brodney Pool and the much-maligned Eric Smith as the starters the rest of the way. They will also likely turn back to rookie Jeremy Kerley on punt returns. Kerley lost the job after a fumble against the Redskins, one of several recent miscues on returns for the Jets, but the team doesn’t have much other choice at this point.