The diagnosis further complicates Bowles' decision to stay with the 33-year-old veteran amid a 3-6 season. Fitzpatrick threw another two interceptions Sunday, extending his lead over all other quarterbacks.
Fitzpatrick briefly exited the loss to get a brace on the injured knee before returning. Bryce Petty, a 2015 fourth-round draft pick, was active behind Fitzpatrick on Sunday and will start Week 10 against the Rams should Fitzpatrick need to sit out.
Whether or not Fitzpatrick plays will come down to pain tolerance and Bowles' digression.
While Fitzpatrick has the dubious distinction of leading the league with 13 picks -- to just eight touchdowns -- he seems to have a hold on the Jets' locker room. Bowles was quick to return to Fitzpatrick after Geno Smith tore his ACL two weeks ago. It is quite a show of faith given his completion percentage (56.5) and a yards-per-game average that is dipping below 230.
Sooner or later, the chorus of fans clamoring to see one of the Jets' two young quarterbacks of the future will grow quite loud. The team is now three games below .500, good enough for last place in the AFC East.