Kris Jenkins reinjures left knee

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- The New York Jets defense has absorbed a nasty blow a handful of plays into their season.

Nose tackle Kris Jenkins, one of their best players, has hurt his left knee again. He has left the field in Monday night's game against the Baltimore Ravens.

Jenkins was injured about 6 1/2 minutes into the game, while making a tackle on Ravens running back Le'Ron McClain.

Jenkins was flat on his back for a couple minutes with a few teammates kneeling next to him. Defensive tackle Sione Pouha seemed to be praying over him until Jenkins sat up, slowly got to his feet and gathered himself before easing off the field under his own power. Jenkins immediately left the Jets' sideline and headed for the trainers' room.

He had a season-ending knee injury six games into last season. The Jets still managed to finish with the NFL's top-rated defense, but he's considered critical as the keystone to their 3-4 defensive front.

Jets coach Rex Ryan recently raved about Jenkins' recovery from the injury.

"I think he’s better this year than he was last year," Ryan said. "The way he approaches practices and the way he’s working.

"The way he has approached it, his thing is he’s trying to get better fundamentally. When you have a veteran who is willing to accept coaching, willing to do things and look at himself critically from a technique standpoint, he’s willing to improve, regardless of his age. That’s what you’re seeing.

"We are seeing a phenomenal Kris Jenkins and he was phenomenal to begin with. He’s really become a better technique player, which is scary for the league, I would think."