The New York Jets held an open practice at Metlife Stadium Tuesday evening with their starting right tackle Wayne Hunter not in attendance. The ninth-year offensive lineman was given the day off for personal reasons after meeting with head coach Rex Ryan early Tuesday morning.
Hunter was spared a rude reception from Jets’ fans following his dismal performance in Saturday night’s preseason contest against the New York Giants, but Ryan refused to discuss the details surrounding Hunter’s excused absence.
“Wayne came in, he was in meetings today, but we had a conversation and it was a personal thing and that’s the way it’ll remain, and it was excused,” remarked Ryan.
Battling back issues during training camp, Hunter missed the Jets’ preseason opener against the Cincinnati Bengals, but he’s expected back on the practice field Wednesday. With New York’s front office reportedly in the market for a starting right tackle, Ryan was noncommittal on Hunter’s status as a starter.
“Again, if there is something out there, at this time people are looking to move a player or this player, but right now to say that we are in the market for a starting right tackle, I don’t believe that to be an accurate statement,” stated Ryan.
On July 23 Gang Green sent a seventh-round pick to the Carolina Panthers in exchange for right tackle Jeff Otah, but the 26-year-old lineman failed his physical due to chronic knee problems rescinding the trade and sending the Jets back to square one.
While Ryan left the door open for a possible trade on the horizon, he also relayed support for New York’s embattled right tackle.
“One thing we will always look at it is if there is a player out there that we feel will help our football team, then we will explore that possibility,” commented Ryan. “With that being said, I am not saying that we are looking at a right tackle or we are looking at whatever, but honestly I am pretty happy with the roster we have.”
Rick Laughland covers the New York Jets for Greenandwhitereport.com
You can follow him on Twitter @rlaughland
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