Jets WR Cotchery to miss Texans game with groin tear

Jerricho Cotchery is playing it safe and sitting this one out.

The New York Jets wide receiver was ruled out Friday for the team's Sunday game against the Houston Texans with a groin injury that held him out of practice all week.

"It was the right decision," Cotchery said. "I worked as hard as I could to give myself a chance to play in this game, but I didn't make enough progress."

Cotchery suffered a slight tear to his left groin during the Jets' 26-20 overtime win at Cleveland last Sunday. The injury occurred moments before he made a terrific diving catch, hobbling along to finish his route, for a first down in the third quarter.

The Jets signed wide receiver Patrick Turner from the practice squad to help fill in for Cotchery. Turner was claimed off waivers from Miami in September and played for the Jets against the Dolphins in Week 3 before being waived and signed to New York's practice squad.

"I like the way he's been practicing," Jets coach Rex Ryan said. "I think the young kid can do it. We'll see this week."

The Jets also signed former New England Patriots linebacker Shawn Crable and Chicago Bears defensive tackle Jarron Gilbert to the practice squad. Cornerback Will Billingsley was released from the practice squad.

Cotchery, who has 29 catches for 315 yards and two touchdowns, remained optimistic about playing next Thursday night, when the Jets host the Cincinnati Bengals.

"I feel a lot better," Cotchery said. "I was able to do a lot of running. I picked it up a lot as far as straight-ahead speed. I didn't do any cutting or anything like that, but today was another huge step."

Cotchery added that there is no pain, but the area is still sensitive. Ryan was encouraged by what he saw from Cotchery, saying he was "looking pretty good."

"If we were playing the Super Bowl," Ryan said, "he'd be playing."

Cotchery missed two games last season with an injured hamstring, an experience that helped him with his current injury.

"I wasn't smart last year with the hammy," he said, adding that he rushed himself back. "Sometimes you have to move yourself out of the way. That's what we tried to do this time around."

Defensive backs Dwight Lowery (concussion) and Marquice Cole (strained left hamstring) also were ruled out by the Jets. Linebacker David Harris (calf) and wide receiver Brad Smith (lower back) were limited Friday, but listed probable on the injury report.

Ryan said Friday that rookie running back Joe McKnight might be thrown into action as the team's fifth cornerback, according to the *New York Daily News*.

"We've had him working on some man-to-man," Ryan told the newspaper. "We'll use him at running back, wide receiver, cornerback. Whatever it takes. He's a good athlete. He's from USC, like Dennis Thurman. They speak the same language."

Quarterback Mark Sanchez (bruised right calf) was a full participant and listed as probable.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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