Amaro, 23, suffered the injury during the Jets preseason opener against Detroit. He had 38 receptions for 345 yards and two touchdowns in his rookie season.
DE Kevin Vickerson was also placed on IR while CB Deshaun Phillips was placed on waivers. Phillips has since cleared waivers and been placed on IR (Sept. 2).
Injuries are always going to play into the composition of any seasonal roster, but the shelving of Jace Amaro has a huge impact on the offense and what the unit could look like this year. With the expectation that Dee Milliner will be the team's one player who can be eligible for Injured Reserve Designated For Return (IR-DFR), the team feels the prudent course of action is to shut Amaro down for the season; keeping him active would be seemingly counterproductive to the team's goals and clog a roster spot.
While the tight end has played a large role in Chan Gailey's offense in the past, this will place more of an emphasis on using the team's third receiver in a "Riley Cooper" role which also aligns with the reduction of Jeremy Kerley's role. Using a third receiver as a Cooper-type means that Owusu/Enunwa will be asked to run-block primarily from wherever they line up and can be a big-bodied mismatch (red zone, third downs) when required. This also means that Brandon Marshall and Eric Decker's target volume in this offense should be boosted in terms of market share by another 3-5% rather easily -- assuming the team makes no acquisitions at the TE spot beyond what they already have on the roster.
Kellen Davis is not a threat to take any target market share away from anyone and he will likely make the team as a pure-blocker. Jeff Cumberland will likely see a much higher number of targets than was expected of him just days or weeks ago as the team's best two-way tight end.
This of course creates an opportunity for the Jets to snag a waived player off another team if they see someone they like, or press Wes Saxton into earlier than expected work on the team's active roster. Assuming the Jets don't trade for a player or pluck someone off waivers, Saxton now has an inside track as a candidate for the 53 man roster. Maybe the Jets like Saxton more than they have let on so far ... the fourth preseason game should help us determine that. This news might also bode well for (brace yourself) Tommy Bohanon's shot at making the final 53.
What follows this is all retro-active "Bassett-narrative" so feel free to treat it as such.
Knowing almost nothing about the true severity of Amaro's injury, the team's decision to shelve Amaro for the year could spell trouble for him moving forward. While I have liked Amaro and wished for his success, watching his 2014 season's tape again this spring, and seeing him fight the football more than play smoothly, he didn't make a strong enough case for the team to allocate that roster spot on him in 2015. In other words, assuming he could have gotten healthy at some point, the team didn't foresee him producing the results they wanted. Additionally, with some serious questions about which receivers, offensive linemen and linebackers the team will bring with them into the regular season, the team couldn't justify tying up Amaro's roster spot seemingly indefinitely.
Amaro's drafting in 2014 during John Idzik's last year as GM smelled overly reactionary for missing out on a talented 2013 tight end (Tyler Eifert, Zach Ertz, Gavin Escobar, Vance McDonald, Travis Kelce) draft class. Word on the street entering Idzik's first (2013) draft was that the Jets were hoping to grab one of those luminaries in the the middle rounds. Once Ertz went off the board in the second, the Jets pulled the trigger on Geno Smith four picks later and then were seemingly always too-little-too-late to aligned value at the tight end spot with their picks.
It could be argued that with the top tier of prospects teetering on the brink (Ebron and ASJ gone), the Jets might have reached to take Amaro when they did. That could align with the current regime's thinking on the player in question and how they treat the nature of how hard they fight to make him available. While we are sure that Amaro's injury is severe, the new regime isn't exactly bending over backwards to find ways to make him available for the Jets this year and that must be a concern, but now it is just one for the 2016 season. Contrary my own point, if the regime didn't regard Amaro highly, then what is most surprising is that the front office didn't find ways to make Amaro redundant prior to this news as certainly there were chances to do so since March.