Over the first week of training camp there's been an increasing concern about Chris Ivory and his ability to get onto the field with the rest of the team. After some work on Monday with the team, Ivory returned to the field shortly yesterday but didn't stay on the field all that much. According to the Star-Ledger, his leg tightened up soon after starting up individual drills. As a precautionary measure, the team's training staff put Ivory back on conditioning regimen and it seems right now there's no clear cut answer when he'll be ready.
"The hamstring is tricky," Ivory told Matt Fensom of the Star-Ledger. "It can feel good, you can go out there like I did today. I thought I was ready but I’m not ready. I don’t want to push it and make it a two-week injury. When it’s fixed I’m able to stay out there and not injure it."
Ivory seems to be frustrated with his inability to stay on the field, telling reporters that "I kind of feel like I’m starting off on the wrong foot."
Ryan didn't answer any questions on Ivory yesterday, but we expect he will have some today, so we'll see what the coach says on the matter soon enough. There's still more than a month until the start of the NFL season, but it is slightly worrisome that Ivory is having a hard time staying healthy at the outset of training camp. This becomes even more problematic considering the Jets will need to prepare as if Mike Goodson won't be available to them at any point.
One of the concerns about trading for Ivory was health. While he was a healthy scratch in games last season, he's had trouble with injuries over his career and as Ivory says himself, he's not starting off on the right foot so far in New York. ESPN NY's Rich Cimini wrote yesterday that "[p]rivately, the staff is hoping that Ivory ... can be a 15-carry-a-game runner." It's not something Ivory has ever done over a 16 game season, so something we'll have to monitor on a game-by-game basis.
Having dynamic players like Goodson or Ivory would be great pluses to this offense, but I still contend that Bilal Powell is a solid running back and if he needs to pick up more of a workload than expected because of the team's backfield problems it's not the worst thing in the world. It might not be saying a lot, but I firmly believe that Powell was a better back than Greene was in 2012, so even inserting Powell, the team is likely to receive a little lift if we use last year as a baseline.