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Trumaine Johnson placed on IR, likely ending his Jets career

Jets cornerback Trumaine Johnson at MetLife Stadium on

Jets cornerback Trumaine Johnson at MetLife Stadium on Sept. 8, 2019. Credit: Lee S. Weissman

Trumaine Johnson’s season and Jets career likely are over.

The Jets placed Johnson on injured reserve Tuesday because of injuries to both ankles. They’re expected to waive Johnson in March before his $11 million salary becomes guaranteed.

Former general manager Mike Maccagnan signed Johnson to a five-year, $72 million free-agent contract in 2018. But Johnson was a disappointment and never lived up to his contract that probably will go down as one of the worst signings in team history.

The veteran cornerback had five interceptions and one fumble recovery in 17 games, and earned $34 million in guaranteed money. Johnson started only five of the seven games he played in this year. He was benched twice — once last year and once this year.

One of the Jets’ big free-agent signings this year, Le’Veon Bell, remains slowed by a knee injury that he suffered in Sunday’s loss to the Dolphins.

Bell underwent an MRI on Monday. The results haven’t been revealed, but coach Adam Gase said during his weekly spot Tuesday on the Michael Kay Show on ESPN Radio that Bell would not practice Wednesday.

His status for Sunday’s game against the Giants remains unclear.

“Right now, I know he’s not practicing on Wednesday,” Gase said. “We’ll see how the rest of the week goes. I know he’s feeling better. We’ll see where it goes from there.”

The Jets signed running back Josh Adams to the active roster on Tuesday, fueling speculation that Bell would miss Sunday’s game. But according to multiple reports the Jets signed Adams to block another team from grabbing him.

Adams had been on the Jets’ practice squad. The former Eagle was Philadelphia’s leading rusher last season. Jets general manager Joe Douglas was in the Eagles’ front office last season and is said to be high on Adams.

The Jets also placed wide receiver Josh Bellamy on injured reserve and signed linebacker Paul Worrilow for much-needed depth at that position.

Worrilow, 29 was a member of the Eagles last season so Douglas knows him well. Worrilow didn’t play in 2018 after tearing his ACL. But he spent the previous five seasons with the Lions and Falcons and totaled 413 tackles in 72 games.

The Jets are decimated with injuries at inside linebacker. C.J. Mosley remains out with a groin injury. Avery Williamson is sidelined for the season after tearing his ACL. Neville Hewitt has missed the last three games with a neck issue.

James Burgess, who got beat a few times by Dolphins tight end Mike Gesicki Sunday, and outside linebacker Brandon Copeland have been handling the inside linebacker duties.

Gase continued to field questions about his job security with the Jets (1-7), and he continues to say that’s not his focus.

“That’s something that doesn’t cross my mind,” he said. “I can’t think that way. I have to think getting guys better.

“I have 53 players. I have 26 coaches. All these guys count on me to do my job. I have the front office counting on me. I have ownership counting on me to make sure I do everything to help these guys get better. If I’m wasting my time on that I’m not doing my job.”

Gase was asked if the Jets’ disappointing record was reflective of their talent level. He indicated that injuries have played a big part in their struggles.

“It’s hard to say,” Gase said. “If I’m going off of talent that we started with… we’ve had guys rotate through. Three games we didn’t have our starting quarterback. We’ve kind of been mixing and matching some of the guys that are playing together.

“All I can say is we’re working to get this thing better, trying to get our guys to play well together,” Gase added. “I promise you that nobody is more angry than I am. I know nobody cares [about that]. It is what it is.”

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