FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — The Jets are hopeful they will have two key pieces back on the field as they take on the Giants Saturday night. Todd Bowles said Wednesday that the team believes it will have running back Matt Forte (hamstring) and defensive end Muhammad Wilkerson (leg) for its third preseason game.
“I hope so, if he doesn’t have any setbacks,” Bowles said of Forte, who hasn’t taken a preseason game snap and never has played with Ryan Fitzpatrick. “Usually I’ll see how he warms up, but I’m trying to get him playing because I want him to get hit before the first game and have that not be his first time.”
Bowles said Wilkerson’s situation will be similar, though he has seen more practice action than Forte.
“It feels pretty good,” Forte said of his hamstring. “This is as important as any game that you’re going into because this is like the main game before you go into the season. You want to get everything on the same page as the offense and you really want to execute a lot of the plays and stuff.”
Bowles said DB Buster Skrine is probably the most improved player from camp this year, along with “maybe Brian Winters.”
“He’s in a different scheme so he has a better grasp mentally of what we’re trying to do and a better grasp of where he needs to be positionally,’’ Bowles said, “which is a big jump from him from last year.”
TE Jace Amaro (groin), WR Kyle Williams (knee), LB Jordan Jenkins (calf) and WR Kenbrell Thompkins (groin) didn’t practice. Bowles said Amaro didn’t aggravate his injury but it “never loosened up.” Jenkins is day to day but probably will not play Saturday if he doesn’t practice Thursday. “Some will have these strains go on for a couple weeks. I’ve seen them go on for a couple days.” . . . Bowles said he wasn’t sure who would replace Jenkins on first-team defense, but that he needs to see all his linebackers, so it’s likely Mike Catapano, Trevor Reilly, Freddie Bishop and Josh Martin all will see action.