Darrelle Revis returned to the practice field without restrictions on Thursday, a signal the star cornerback is likely to play this weekend in Miami.
Head coach Rex Ryan wasn’t willing to guarantee Revis will play against the Dolphins, but Revis himself did.
“Doctors cleared me so I’ll be playing on Sunday,” Revis said.
“If it’s not the final hurdle I don’t want to be saying something that isn’t true so I’m going to be leaning on the doctors and trainers. Hopefully he’ll play but we’ll see,” Ryan said.
“I can say that I expect him to play, but again, I’m going to lean on the doctors and the trainers.”
Called “the best player on the field” by Ryan, the return of Revis surely helps the Jets against a Miami offense that was efficient throwing the ball against the Raiders last week. Arguably the game’s best cornerback and premier defensive player, Revis had an outstanding leaping interception in Week 1 in a play that helped turn the Bills game into a rout for the Jets.
“He’s clear for contact but obviously if he hadn’t passed the tests he wouldn’t be cleared,” Ryan said.
There was more good news for the Jets on Thursday as safety Eric Smith and tight end Dustin Keller were both upgraded to limited in practice. Keller in particular has been missed, as the pass-catching tight end has been a favorite target of quarterback Mark Sanchez.
The health of Keller’s hamstring seems to be pointing toward a possible return for the Dolphins game.
“I think it’s a positive sign; I don’t think there’s any question. We’ll see how he goes through practice today,” Ryan said. “It’s much better than yesterday when he was out. Hopefully it is a sign that he will play this week.”
Less likely to make the trip to Miami are Bryan Thomas (hamstring) and fullback John Conner (knee), neither of whom practiced on Thursday. When asked if he would play, Conner responded, “Probably not.”
Cornerback Ellis Lankster was also held out with a lower back injury, but Ryan seemed optimistic of his return to the field soon. Rookie defensive end Quinton Coples was originally scratched due to an illness, but ended up practicing with the team.
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Follow Jets beat writer Kristian Dyer on Twitter @KristianRDyer.