New York Jets news, commentary and insider info from beat writer Kimberley A. Martin.
Joe McKnight struggles to make it to practice, then carted off
CORTLAND -- Joe McKnight's bizarre training camp took an even stranger turn Monday.
A day after the Jets running back/kick returner blew off questions about his head injury and recent arrest, McKnight had to be helped off the field by trainers Monday and was later carted away while wearing an oxygen mask.
McKnight initially struggled to make it to practice.
He stopped several times to bend over while walking across the soccer field leading to the turf football field where the Jets practice. McKnight -- who, at first, appeared to be Tebowing -- eventually stood up, but bent over again after taking a few more steps. As he got closer to the far field where his teammates were, he leaned over a garbage can as if he were vomiting.
And he only lasted 45 minutes on the field.
At one point, McKnight went down near the end zone and had to be helped to his feet. With trainers on each side, he walked slowly to the injury tent behind the practice field. After laying on his side for several minutes, McKnight sat up and had his vision checked by a trainer. Jets head trainer, John Mellody, later taped McKnight’s left ankle.
McKnight was given oxygen before being driven to the locker room.
McKnight generated headlines back in 2010, when he puked during his first training camp practice with the Jets. Since then, he's had a string of training camp injuries and episodes: Last season, he missed practice due to food poisoning (which, he blamed on a Cortland Applebee's). This summer, he failed his conditioning test the same day the Jets reported to camp (Rex Ryan, however, blamed anxiety for McKnight's failed test), he missed practice due to dehydration (despite his 3 percent body fat), he was arrested for outstanding traffic violations on a team off-day, and then he suffered a head injury shortly thereafter.
Asked on Aug. 8 about McKnight's health, and the possibility he might have a concussion, Ryan made it clear that the former fourth-round draft pick is healthy.
"Joe McKnight’s in shape, he’s in phenomenal shape," he said.
At the tail end of practice, McKnight emerged from the locker room wearing a T-shirt and shorts and walked to the field.