Jets WR Quincy Enunwa has been placed on injured reserved due to a neck injury and is expected to miss the entire season, an NFL source confirmed to SNY's Ralph Vacchiano.
Enunwa has a bulging disk and is expected to miss six-to-nine months, head coach Todd Bowles said on Monday.
Enunwa is receiving a second opinion regarding whether surgery is necessary, but the injury is not considered to be career-threatening.
The 25-year-old Enunwa, who was expected to be the Jets' No. 1 receiver, suffered the neck injury during the team's Green & White scrimmage at MetLife Stadium on Saturday night during a 7-on-7 drill.
Enunwa dropped the pass from Christian Hackenberg and hit the ground. He got up, took one step and then fell face-first onto the ground again. Trainers rushed out to the field and hovered over him for several minutes before he finally got up onto his knees and then walked slowly -- but under his own power -- to the Jets' locker room.
Jets coach Todd Bowles said Saturday that he didn't know the severity of the injury, but said "it's the same thing he hurt in the spring." That was a relatively minor neck/shoulder injury. "It wasn't severe," Bowles said. "But it held him out a little while."
Enunwa caught 58 passes for 857 yards and four touchdowns in 2016, during what was his third season in the league.
The Jets, who released Brandon Marshall and Eric Decker this offseason, are now left with Robby Anderson as their No. 1 receiver, with Charone Peake, rookies ArDarius Stewart and Chad Hansen, Lucky Whitehead, and Marquess Wilson also on the depth chart.
Jalin Marshall is suspended for the first four games of the season due to violating the league's performance-enhancing drugs policy.
"If we have to lose him we'll adjust from there," Bowles said about Enunwa on Saturday. "But we've got young guys coming on."
There's really no way around this: This is absolutely devastating news for the Jets and a receiving corps that was thin to begin with, and is now greener than their home uniforms and turf.
Quincy Enunwa was the Jets' No. 1 receiver, but it was really a title he earned by default. Enunwa had a breakout season last year, but by the numbers he was far from a true No. 1. Had either Brandon Marshall or Eric Decker stuck around, he would have been the second or third receiver -- which would've been where he belonged.
But when the Jets cut both Decker and Marshall, Enunwa leaped to the top of the depth chart, even if no one was sure he was completely ready. He's a nice receiver -- a solid two or three -- but he seems to possess neither the size nor the speed to join the ranks of the elite. He was simply the best that the Jets had.
Now? Who knows what the Jets have? Their most accomplished receiver is Robby Anderson, who was a worthy No. 3 last season as a rookie but was barely ahead of Charone Peake or Jalin Marshall on the depth chart. None of them have a track record. None of them remind anyone of the elite receivers around the league. And until they step on the field in an actual game, neither do rookies ArDarius Stewart or Chad Hansen.
And that leaves the Jets with this: Trying to learn a new offense with untested receivers who are still learning to play in the NFL. That will make life really hard on veteran Josh McCown in the early going. It will be a devastating deficiency whenever rookie quarterback Christian Hackenberg steps in. The idea of Hackenberg making his first starts in the NFL, with the new offense and no veteran receiver to lean on, is an absolute recipe for disaster. It's almost unfair.
No, it wasn't going to be much easier even if Enunwa had stayed healthy, unless his ability and production took a quantum leap. But the Jets were obviously already operating with little room for error, especially on offense where the adequate shoes of Enunwa may prove very difficult to fill.