Will Jets’ Free Agent Receiver Get Full Clearance for Season Opener?

The New York Jets may be waiting on wide receiver Mike Williams come Week 1.

Although reasonable projections suggest the Jets’ WR1 will be available in time to suit up for the 2024 season opener at San Francisco, he almost certainly won’t regain his full speed and stamina until later in the fall. Williams suffered an ACL tear in the Los Angeles Chargers’ Week 3 game last year and was subsequently released by the club early in the offseason.

Williams, who will turn 30 years old on October 4, has reportedly made strides during the rehabilitation process, but he was not read to participate in OTAs practices this spring.

“Mike [Williams] is going to be kind of on Breece’s [Hall] schedule,” said Saleh during mandatory June minicamp.

Hall, who tore his ACL as a rookie in 2022, remained on the Physically Unable to Perform list for much of the 2023 preseason. He did not appear in any preseason games, but was on the field in Week 1. Still, it wasn’t until a few weeks into the regular season that the running back returned to full strength.

It wasn’t the first time that Saleh compared Williams and Hall in terms of a recovery timeline.

“Mike, he’s got a long way to go,” said Saleh at the league meetings in March. “He’s on the same timeline that Breece had. They’re very similar injuries, same time frame. He knows he’s got a road to trek, but at the same time, if he does it the right way, we’re very confident we’ll have him ready for Week 1.”

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Should Williams prove capable of meeting the Week 1 benchmark, he still could see limited reps at first. It’s realistic to think the Jets won’t have a full-strength WR2 until October.

“For the season for sure,” said Williams when asked about a targeted return date during a minicamp media availability. “That’s my goal to be able to go out there, play this season and give it my all.”

Jets’ veterans are expected to report to training camp on July 23 in Florham Park.


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