Dortch was signed off the Jets' practice roster by Carolina on Wednesday, Brendan Marks of The Charlotte Observer reports.
Dortch, a 21-year-old wide receiver, will most likely serve as Carolina's primary kick and punt returner, something in which he did quite well in college a year ago. Playing for Wake Forest, the speedster returned a pair of punts for touchdowns in 2018.
Dortch was waived by the Jets as the team trimmed the final roster down to 53 players, Matt Stypulkoski of NJ.com reports.
Dortch survived the initial round of cuts, but he was one of the guys let go when the team opted to bring in four new roster players off waivers. One of those new additions was wide receiver Braxton Berrios, who will presumably take over the punt returning duties Dortch handled for much of preseason.
Dortch caught his lone target for seven yards and returned three punts for 28 yards in Saturday's 28-13 preseason loss to the Saints.
Dortch is still clinging to the top punt returner job, which would be the undrafted wide receiver's ticket to a roster spot.
Dortch caught four of six targets for 20 yards and a touchdown while adding 42 yards on a trio of punt returns in Thursday's preseason opener against the Giants.
Dortch scored a two-yard touchdown with 14 seconds to go. He also put the ball on the ground at one point but didn't lose the fumble. The undrafted rookie out of Wake Forest is making a push to claim the punt returner job vacated by Andre Roberts' departure, and he should get plenty of opportunities to contribute as a wide receiver on offense as well during the remainder of preseason.
Dortch is building a good case for a spot on the Jets' 53-man roster, Connor Hughes of The Athletic reports.
The undrafted rookie recorded 1,800 receiving yards and 1,211 return yards in 20 games during his career at Wake Forest, scoring 17 touchdowns on offense and two more on special teams. He's one of the smallest players in the NFL at 5-foot-7, 173 pounds, so his strong work during the offseason program won't necessarily carry over to padded practices at training camp. If it does, Dortch could serve as the backup for Jamison Crowder's slot role while also returning punts and/or kickoffs. Second-year players Deontay Burnett and Quadree Henderson are hoping to win the same type of job, but the former hasn't seen return work since his sophomore year of college and the latter doesn't have much experience as a receiver.
Dortch signed a contract with the Jets on Friday.
Dortch is coming off a career at Wake Forest where he served as both a receiver and return man, averaging 152 all-purpose yards per game over the course of his career. If he does make the Jets' final roster, it will likely be as a special teams performer.
|Bye: Week 7|
|8||10/27/19||@ SF||4:05 pm|
|10||11/10/19||@ GB||1:00 pm|
|12||11/24/19||@ NO||1:00 pm|
|14||12/8/19||@ ATL||1:00 pm|
|16||12/22/19||@ IND||1:00 pm|
|2019||New York Jets||0||0||0||0||---||0||0||0||0||0|