FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — Bryce Petty barely spoke above a whisper, but the expression on his face said everything.
He had arrived at Gillette Stadium anxious to square off against one of his childhood idols. His outing, however, lasted 12 snaps, and he ended the afternoon with one arm in a sling.
The 25-year-old quarterback — who suffered a chest bruise after a vicious hit by Cameron Wake and Ndamukong Suh in last week’s loss to Miami — injured his left shoulder early in the second quarter against the Patriots. Petty was hurt while trying to make a tackle after Jets backup running back Khiry Robinson fumbled and the Patriots’ Malcolm Butler recovered.
Petty was checked out on the sideline by team doctors and then escorted to the locker room. He never returned and was replaced by Ryan Fitzpatrick.
“Went in for the tackle. It was a kind of freak deal,” said Petty, who still must undergo an MRI on Sunday. “Could never regain any strength back in it.
“I felt it pop out. I heard it pop. The good thing is, it’s posterior from what they were saying, so it’s a lot better than interior. Hopefully that means less treatment time.”
Petty’s day could not have gone any worse. He completed zero passes (0-for-3), threw an interception that set up a Patriots touchdown to make it 10-0, and was sacked on his first two drives.
Petty said his shoulder popped back in once he rolled on it after making the tackle. Now his immediate focus is getting “strength back in it.”
His status for next Sunday’s season finale against Buffalo is up in the air. Coach Todd Bowles said the coaching staff will discuss this week what to do about the quarterback situation.
Against the Patriots, Bowles dressed only two quarterbacks and kept rookie Christian Hackenberg on the inactive list for the 15th straight game. There is a chance, however, that Hackenberg will start against Rex Ryan’s Bills.
Asked how he thought Petty fared before he got hurt, Bowles said: “Not well.’’
His quarterback’s self-assessment was brutally honest.
“I mean, just awful,” said Petty, who has thrown seven interceptions and three touchdown passes in six games. “That’s the tough part. I felt like I was seeing the field fine. Pregame was fine, throwing in the rain and whatnot. I just could not get a good handle on the ball. Every ball that I threw just slipped out. And so it’s going to come with learning how to deal with the weather. [Brady] had to deal with it too, and he did fine. Just gotta keep plugging away and you can’t let that happen. [0-for-3] with two sacks and a pick, it’s just not good right now.”
Asked about his interception, which came on a pass intended for rookie Robby Anderson, Petty said: “It’s a shame. I felt good. We’ve got to move the ball and it starts through me.”
Petty could recall rain being an issue only once before in his career, when he was Baylor’s starting quarterback and the Bears were playing Oklahoma State. That day, however, he said the rain stopped right before kickoff or during the first quarter.
“This was probably the first time I’ve played in a constant drizzle,” he said.