New York Jets: Will Stevan Ridley be ready for Training Camp?


One of the more notable offseason acquisitions for the New York Jets this offseason was the signing of running back Stevan Ridley.

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Ridley was a third-round pick of the New England Patriots in the 2011 NFL Draft, and become a very solid running back for them in his four seasons. With the Patriots, Ridley totaled 2,817 rushing yards, 22 rushing touchdowns, and a 4.3 yards per carry average.

Ridley’s best season came in 2012 with the Patriots. In 2012, Ridley totaled 1,263 rushing yards, 12 rushing touchdowns, and a 4.4 yards per carry average.

Last season, Ridley’s season was cut short after suffering a season-ending knee injury which required surgery. Due to Ridley’s knee injury, the Jets were able to sign him for a very reasonable one-year, $1.25 million deal. Ridley was surely hoping for a better contract in his first taste of free agency, but instead will have to impress in 2015 after coming off the knee surgery.

“But at the end of the day, I found myself on a team that really committed to me and showed me that they believed in me,” said Ridley to Darryl Slater of “Any time you go through an injury on a contract year, it’s tough, man. I can’t lie to you on that. That’s hard, because you work so hard your whole life and dream so big about getting to a certain point, and when it’s time to cash in and get that big payday, to have an injury come at that time, it’s a shot, man. So it’s tough.”

While Ridley is healing well, he still isn’t able to do everything that his teammates can on the field quite yet. In Jets’ 11-on-11 drills, Ridley was unable to participate. The Jets won’t be beginning training camp until the end of July, which is still in question for Ridley.

“I really can’t predict the future, man,” Ridley said to Slater. “I just know that, for me, I’ve got to be ready for Week 1. That’s the goal right now. I’m not going to set myself up for any false hope or say that I’m going to do something that I’m not. What I will say is I’m working hard. I’ve just got to make sure that I’m 100 percent healthy, and that when I do hit the field, I’m making an impact.”

Ridley seems to understand that he has to be careful with the process to ensure his own well-being and to avoid a setback.

“Right now at this point in time, just taking it one day at a time,” he said to Slater. “From the time I got here to now, I can definitely see the improvement. I’ve still got a lot of work to do. I’m just trying to make sure I’m putting myself in position to help this team out when the season rolls around.”

Ridley is going to a very motivated player when the season rolls around in another contract year. Chris Ivory will likely be getting a majority of the carries, but if Ridley is healthy, he should be able to earn himself playing time.

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