Holmes' NFL hopes are slipping away
VALENTINE Holmes' hopes of making the New York Jets' regular-season roster are slipping away.
The former NRL star received scant opportunities against the Atlanta Falcons on Friday (AEST).
A week after he made an impact in his "surreal" NFL debut, the Jets went with four other running backs before Holmes eventually entered the preseason game at Atlanta with just two minutes to go.
He managed only three yards on three carries and for the second straight week was not given an opportunity as a punt or kick returner.
The Jets won the game 22-10, with starting quarterback Sam Darnold completing five of his seven passes for 46 yards.
The Jets have just two preseason games left before they open the regular season against the Buffalo Bills on September 8.
The team must slash its preseason roster of around 90 players to 53, with Holmes likely to take a place on the team's 11-man practice squad as part of the NFL's International Pathway program.
Practice squad players train with the team but do not play games.
The Jets face the New Orleans Saints next weekend in the third preseason match-up, but it traditionally is a "dress rehearsal" game for the team's first and second-string players.
Jets coach Adam Gase offered players on the fringe some hope, telling reporters he was yet to finalise his 53-man squad.
"There's a lot of opportunities for guys and it's wide open," Gase said after the game.
Holmes is anchored at the bottom of the Jets' six-man running back corps.
Their star, Le'Veon Bell, who signed a four-year $US52 million ($A77 million) contract to join the Jets, has sat out the first two preseason games.
Ty Montgomery started at running back against the Falcons with Bilal Powell, Elijah McGuire and Trenton Cannon entering the game before Holmes.
In 2015 when NRL convert Jarryd Hayne made the San Francisco 49ers' 53-man roster, he had become a sensation after two preseason games where he made big plays at running back and as a punt and kick returner.
The Jets went with Tim White, JJ Jones and Greg Dortch as punt returners instead of Holmes and Cannon for kick-off returns.
Holmes made the most of his opportunities during his NFL debut last week against the New York Giants when he caught three passes for 30 yards and had three carries for six yards.
Australian Lachlan Edwards continued to confirm his place as the Jets' best punter.
He had three punts averaging 48.7 yards - two dropped inside the 20-yard line and his longest was 53 yards.
His competitor for the punting job, Matt Darr, had three punts, averaging 42.7, two inside the 20-yard line and a long one of 45.