FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — C.J. Mosley declared himself healthy and ready to face the Patriots.
“I’m playing Monday night,” he said.
After missing four games because of a groin injury, the linebacker went through individual drills on Thursday and wasn’t limited or in pain. That’s all Mosley needed to announce he’s back.
This came as a little surprise because Mosley hasn’t practiced in full yet. Adam Gase said it would be a “full organization” decision as to when Mosley returns.
But the Jets' defensive play-caller already made the call.
“Unless I get hurt or something," Mosley said, "I’m playing."
Mosley said these drills — which included cutting, stopping and starting, opening up and changing direction — were the tests he needed to pass before he can go through some team drills on Friday.
How his body feels Friday morning will determine whether he practices or not. But Mosley is confident he will.
“I did everything as far as individual drills, linebacker drills, drops, I did everything,” Mosley said. “Tomorrow I take the next step as far as actually getting on the field. I won’t be thinking about my leg. I’ll just be thinking about making plays on defense.”
The Jets could use the help against Tom Brady and the 6-0 Patriots.
“Looking forward to it,” Jamal Adams said of having Mosley back. “That puts a smile on my face because he makes things easier for us on the back end, makes my job a lot easier as far as communicating on the back end.
“He’s a playmaker that we love to have out there, a guy that we feed off.”
The defense actually has performed relatively well without Mosley.
They held the Cowboys’ No. 1 offense in check and stopped them from converting a game-tying two-point conversion in the final minute to capture their first win of the season Sunday.
There’s no doubt they’ve missed Mosley’s presence, production and leadership, though
The Jets signed Mosley to a five-year, $85 million contract to help turn around the franchise. A four-time Pro Bowler with the Ravens, Mosley give a little glimpse in the season opener of how big of an impact he can have.
He had two takeaways – one an interception return for a touchdown – in the Jets’ Week 1 17-16 loss to the Bills. Mosley left with the Jets ahead 16-0 in the third quarter because of the groin, and Buffalo had two long fourth-quarter scoring drives to beat the Jets.
Mosley said he really believed he would be back the following week, but the injury ended up being worse than he thought. He said he was eventually given a four-to-six week timetable.
“It’s been annoying,” he said. “You set a timetable up, then you’re not ready. You feel like you’re having setbacks. You just got to be patient. I know if I would have gotten on the field the past couple of weeks I only would have made it worse.”
Mosley also needed to overcome some mental hurdles before he felt confident he could play the way he always has.
“It was a long process,” he said. “After the fourth week, I felt my body getting better, most of the swelling went down. That was kind of the main thing.
“At my position, what I do, it was affecting me cutting and playing and changing direction and I do that every single play. Once I got that mental block out of my head it kind of helped me get back on the field and test the limits.”
When Gase was asked about Mosley’s impact, he compared it to getting your starting quarterback back. Sam Darnold returned from a three-game absence and won AFC Offensive Player of the Week after leading the Jets to the win over the Cowboys. Mosley is hoping to follow a similar script.
“Hopefully we come out with a win and Defensive Player of the Week,” he said. “It’ll be the exact same."