Jets cornerback Michael Carter II during training camp at the Atlantic Health...

Jets cornerback Michael Carter II during training camp at the Atlantic Health Jets Training Center in Florham Park, N.J. on Aug. 11. Credit: Noah K. Murray

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — Jets defensive coordinator Jeff Ulbrich has been extremely impressed with Michael Carter II and how quickly the rookie nickelback has made an impact.

Ulbrich said he usually tempers expectations for rookies and especially in the back end because of many different variables. But he believes the Jets have found a legit cornerback in Carter, a fifth-round pick from Duke.

Carter is third on the Jets with 19 tackles and tied for second with two tackles for loss while playing fewer than 60% of the defensive snaps.

"We were really careful about our expectations for him," Ulbrich said. "I really feel like he’s exceeded our expectations. He’s done an exceptional job back there. He’s a guy that gets consistently better. He has become a real NFL corner and a real NFL nickel. I’m excited about his future. I really am."

Replacing Maye

Ulbrich said the Jets could use a "by committee" approach to replace safety Marcus Maye, who will miss 3-4 weeks with an ankle injury. The Jets lost their other starter LaMarcus Joyner (triceps) for the season in Week 1.

Adrian Colbert and Jarrad Wilson are the healthy safeties. Ashtyn Davis and Sharrod Neasman returned to practice Wednesday from IR. They could be activated this week.

"We do have some good safety depth," Ulbrich said. "Getting Neasman back and Ashtyn back this week is going to be a huge part of that. By Sunday we’ll figure out who’s the best if not maybe by committee to replace him."

Titans without top two WRs?

The Jets could catch a break Sunday and face the Titans without their two top receivers. A.J. Brown and Julio Jones have not practiced the last two days due to hamstring injuries.

But everything with Tennessee starts with bruising running back Derrick Henry, the NFL’s leading rusher last season with 2,027 yards. Henry is leading the NFL again with 353 yards and three rushing scores.

"He’s going to be a huge, huge challenge this week," Ulbrich said, "which we’re excited about."

Injury report

Slot receiver Jamison Crowder (groin) participated in practice – on a limited basis – for the second straight day, and is trending toward making his season debut. But the Jets are expected to be without receivers Elijah Moore and Jeff Smith. Both have concussions. Running back La’Mical Perine didn’t practice due to a non-COVID-19 illness. Tight end Tyler Kroft (ribs) was limited.

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