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Mike White Medically Cleared, Named Starter for Jets in Week 17 at Seattle

Signal-Caller Has Thrown for 952 Yards, 3 TD, 2 INT in 3 Games This Season


QB Mike White (rib) was medically cleared for contact and will start for the Jets in Week 17 at Seattle.

White (6-4, 218), who started Weeks 12-14 before fractured ribs held him out of the lineup the last two games, was cleared by doctors on Monday and will be the team's starter for the remainder of the season barring injury.

"I thought Mike had been doing a great job," HC Robert Saleh said. "I thought he did a great job moving the offense, sustaining drives, getting first downs, much more efficient. The offense was running with some good efficiency. It's a great opportunity for him, it's a great opportunity for anybody any time you get the chance to step on the field. Really, he just needs to take it one day at a time and go from there."

White tried to find clearance from about 10 different doctors after taking a hit from Bills LB Matt Milano. Milano's hit resulted in a couple of fractured ribs that made that area vulnerable to contact.

"At the end of the day, regardless of who cleared him, he had to be cleared by our doctors. So, it was ours [who cleared him]," Saleh said.

White has thrown for 952 yards, 3 touchdowns and 2 interceptions while completing 62% of his passes this season. The 2018 fifth-round pick out of Western Kentucky led an offense that ranked No. 3 in yards per game and No. 2 in passing yards per game in Weeks 12-14. The Green & White, however, went 1-2 in that span, beating the Bears at home before losing back-to-back road games to the Vikings and the Bills.

"I mean I'm always going to try to fight like hell to be out on the field with my guys," White said leading up to the Lions game when he was declared out. "It's frustrating, but it's part of football, part of life you have to deal with and be there for your guys. I may not be on the field, but I'll be out there on the sidelines, helping in any way possible."

He will make his fourth start of the season, and seventh of his career, against a Seahawks defense that ranks No. 29 in total yards allowed, No. 31 against the run and No. 17 against the pass. It's allowed 25.3 points per game, which ranks No. 29 in the NFL.

Joe Flacco will be the backup to White, making QB Zach Wilson, who has started nine games this season, including the last two, inactive.

"The plan for Zach hasn't changed," Saleh said. "I still think he has a future here, I still think he's going to be a really good quarterback. He needs time to just kind of sit back and continue the development that we're trying to re-kickstart after the New England game. We still have him in our future and in our plans."

He added: "We're going to do everything we can to develop him."

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