"I'll be out there on Sunday," said Jerricho Cotchery, answering one of the big questions concerning the Jets' Sunday matchup with Miami after missing the past two games with a hamstring injury. "No doubt. I'm not missing this game."
The Jets' leading receiver (24 catches for 360 yards, one TD) was just itching to provide that revelation in the middle of an interview with SNY's Steve Overmyer today, and he finally just let out the secret with a smile.
"We have a big opportunity this week," Cotchery said. "We didn't take care of business when we went down there. We have another chance to play these guys and we just have to take advantage of this opportunity. We did a good job of getting the win last week. We were mentally locked in the entire week. We're taking that same approach this week and trying to come out with the same results."
The big difference now is that they had their most consistent receiving threat back for their first practice of the week at the Atlantic Health Jets Training Center. No. 89 looked like his usual self in his first real work of practice in a few weeks, running routes and making cuts with precision. He was listed at limited, taking part in some team drills.
"I did some things today in practice," he said. "Last week I didn't practice that much — didn't practice at all, really. Today I took some reps. I'm feeling good right now."
Taking the week off while the Green & White handled their business on the West Coast was crucial for J-Co to be ready.
"Last week was a great building block for me," he said. "We took advantage of that week and took advantage of the rehab this weekend."
Cotchery served a limited role at Miami earlier this month, catching one pass for 4 yards at a time when many thought the Jets' running game was struggling. While he was gone, the running game hit its stride racking up two straight 300-yard games.
"The running game has been rolling," he said. "Now we're going to see what we can do in the passing game."
This week the Jets will go up against a formidable Dolphins run defense, ranked fourth in the NFL and giving up only 86.7 yards per game. They might need more than their 152.1 yards per game through the air.
Considering all the factors, there's no reason to think that that can't happen this week.
WR David Clowney emerged in the last 'Fins game, grabbing four receptions for a team-high 72 yards, and he led the Jets last week at Oakland with four receptions for 79 yards and his first NFL regular-season TD. However, Clowney also injured an ankle vs. the Raiders and did not practice today.
If he's good to go, add his resurgence to the hoped-for return of Cotchery and the possible return of Brad Smith, also limited today. The Dolphins, who put starting CB Will Allen on injured reserve Tuesday, may have a hard time preparing for a Jets O that's seen some changes from the one they faced in their 31-27 victory three games ago.
"We have a lot of weapons on the offense. I've been out, Brad's been out. We haven't had the full arsenal," said Cotchery. "When you don't have the full arsenal, you're not able to call everything the way you want to. With me coming back and hopefully Brad is going to come back, you're able to do whatever you want pretty much. It's going to be fun."