Jets announce Forte and Powell out for preseason opener

CLEVELAND, OH - OCTOBER 30: New York Jets Running Back Matt Forte (22) runs the football during the second quarter of the NFL game between the New York Jets and Cleveland Browns on October 30, 2016, at FirstEnergy Stadium in Cleveland, OH. New York defeated Cleveland 31-28. (Photo by Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire)
Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire

The New York Jets announced prior to kickoff on Saturday that running backs Matt Forte and Bilal Powell would be sitting out the night’s game against the Tennessee Titans, along with linebacker Lorenzo Mauldin.

Both Forte and Powell are banged up ahead of the team’s preseason opener, so they’re not just receiving ceremonial off-days from head coach Todd Bowles. The two backs are sure to get a majority of the carries come the regular season for New York, which is less than a month away.

Forte and Powell are the only two Jets still on the roster to receive at least 10 carries during the 2016 campaign. Forte rushed for 813 yards and seven touchdowns, but it was Powell who averaged 5.5 yards per carry and found the end zone on three separate occasions.

Each man was effective in the passing game as well, with Powell besting Forte in that category, as he hauled in 58 receptions for 388 yards. Forte made just 30 catches, but averaged 8.8 yards per grab.

Lorenzo Mauldin finished his second season in New York with 16 tackles and 2.5 sacks, as he was just one of six different Jets to intercept a pass in 2016. The team finished with eight overall as a unit, as compared to the 25 they threw from their signal callers.

The next chance for all three men to suit up comes next Saturday against the Detroit Lions in the second week of the preseason. The team’s regular season opener comes on Sept. 10 when they travel to take on the Buffalo Bills.

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