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Jets QB Sam Darnold, Cleared for Non-Contact, Will Practice Wednesday

Head Coach Adam Gase Still Cautious But Says "Things Have Progressed in the Right Direction"


It's still complicated, but Jets head coach Adam Gase said QB Sam Darnold will work with the first unit, including in team drills, at today's practice as the Green & White prepare to play at Philadelphia on Sunday.

"Sam's been cleared medically, he's been cleared for non-contact," Gase said. "We're not allowed to hit him yet, which we shouldn't have that problem in practice. ... No one's going to touch him today, I promise you that."

Nevertheless, Darnold, still rehabbing from a bout with mono that kept him sidelined for Games 2 and 3, doesn't have the go-ahead yet to prepare as the starter against the Eagles. That green light could come as late as Sunday or not at all for this game.

"We have to be flexible in practice," Gase said. "We'll start going and see how it goes. The good thing about [backup Luke] Falk being as sharp as he is, he'll get reps in practice. We have some changes in practice where we're doing more reps."

See Best Images from Wednesday's Practice at 1 Jets Drive

Reporters pressed Gase with Darnold questions for the first half of the news conference. The best he was willing to go is that he's more optimistic this week than last.

"I like our odds better than what they've been," he said. "Last week, if we were playing a game, I would've said they were really low. Things have progressed in the right direction, but I don't know what that 5 percent is. There's still some gray there.

"If it doesn't look right, then we'll go in a different direction. The communication with him, with the doctors, with the coaches — a lot of people will be involved in this conversation. It's going to take all of us really checking our boxes, saying we're OK with this, including Sam."

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