Archive for August, 2009

Can Gang Green Tame the Wildcat?

Monday, August 31st, 2009

Thursday night’s preseason finale will present a multitude of challenges for a defense still in the process of developing its chemistry and finding its way in a new scheme.

As if the stable of weapons quarterback Donovan McNabb has at his disposal weren’t enough for Gang Green, the unit must now deal with newly-signed backup Michael Vick, and the inevitable Wildcat package the Eagles coaching staff has put together for the former Pro Bowler.

For a defense that’s given up at least one big play in each of its preseason games, this will be undoubtedly their toughest test to date.  Vick is set to see significant action, with the Eagles most likely throwing the kitchen sink at Bart Scott and the boys.

The Jets should get a good look at new Eagles QB Michael Vick on Thursday at the Meadowlands.

The Jets should get a good look at new Eagles QB Michael Vick on Thursday at the Meadowlands.

“It just gives you something else to play around with and stay up and study longer for,” safety Kerry Rhodes said.  “It always gives defenses a challenge just because of the aspects of doing it.  It’s something extra that you have to study at the end of the day.”

While Thursday’s game will be a tough test for the star-studded defense, it is without question a necessary one.  The Wildcat was made famous by the Miami Dolphins, the AFC East winners in 2008, and some of the Jets’ chief competition for a playoff berth in 2009.  What’s more, the NFL is by definition a copycat league; you’d be hard pressed to find a team that doesn’t have at least a small package of Wildcat plays in their arsenal.  So the fact they will be tested by the man it seems the formation was made for will be the ultimate measuring stick.

Rex Ryan’s defense in Baltimore shut down the Dolphin offense in a 27-13 drubbing in the AFC playoffs’ wildcard round, so if anyone knows how to neutralize the Next Big Thing in the NFL, it’s him.  With Kris Jenkins now healthy plugging the middle, and speed and discipline at the linebacker position, the Jets have the personnel to shutdown the ‘Cat any time it’s thrown at them.  What will truly be interesting to see is if the defense has jelled enough at this point to realize that potential Thursday.

STICKING WITH STUCK

Ryan eluded  today that WR Chansi Stuckey has locked up the #2 wideout spot behind Jerricho Cotchery. His four catches for 69 yards and a TD against the Giants on Saturday was the clincher while his biggest competition David Clowney didn’t touch the ball.

Jets WR Chansi Stuckey is all smiles after locking up the #2 wideout spot with a great performance against the Giants. (JetsInsider.com Photo)

Jets WR Chansi Stuckey is all smiles after locking up the #2 wideout spot with a great performance against the Giants. (JetsInsider.com Photo)

Although Ryan said the #2 will be a position “by committee” he said that Stuckey will be “the guy he’ll throw out there first”.

LITO’S OK BY REX

The Giants threw at new Jets cornerback Lito Sheppard with aggression in Saturday night’s game, forcing the former Pro Bowler into two pass interferance penalties, and rendering him toast on the dropped deep ball thrown to Giants wide receiver Steve Smith.  What some consider cause for concern, head coach Rex Ryan and Lito see as absolutely nothing to worry about.

“They were going at him, no question,” Ryan said at today’s news conference.   “For Lito, I think it was more of the fact that they were going away from [Darrelle] Revis. All he is is, what, a two-time Pro Bowl corner?  Again, I’m glad he’s on our team.”

“We got a gift on that one deep one he dropped, which was a little confusing,” Lito said. “But other than that, you count, what, 25 yards on nine throws over there? That equals a loss to me. They can throw the ball over there. I expect it. I’m prepared for it. Until we make them do otherwise, we’re going to see if they can beat us like that. But obviously it didn’t work last week.”

The Jets traded for Sheppard to have a bonafide corner opposite Darrelle Revis, who is entering “We don’t throw to his side” territory as his career progresses.  So Sheppard is going to be getting thrown at… a lot.  If he’s up to the task, then we are looking at the best cornerback tandem in the game, period.  If he’s not, and the Jets find a situation in which they can’t get to the quarterback, it could spell for a long season for the former Eagle.

MR. EVERYTHING

Just how good has versatile running back Leon Washington been this preseason?

Leon leads all NFL players in total yards through the preseason’s first three weeks with 381 yards, encompassing his returning, rushing, and receiving yards from scrimmage.   We are seeing Ryan’s commitment to getting this man the rock, and it is paying off in the early going, to say the least.

Regarding his contract extension, there’s been no new news lately. However, now that Washington’s agent Alvin Keels has finally gotten his biggest rookie signed when OL Andre Smith inked with the Bengals this past weekend, look for Keels to start giving Leon some serious attention.

The Jets will practice again tomorrow morning, with only the first 40 minutes of the workout open to the media.  Check back to JetsInsider for all your post-practice updates.

Camp breaks with positive vibes

Thursday, August 27th, 2009

The final open practice of the summer was marked with an outstanding tempo from start to finish, and plenty of good news on the injury front as the Jets head into their Saturday evening tilt against the New York Giants.

Jets NT Kris Jenkins, who has been sidelined with a calf injury since week 1 of camp is back to the delight of all. (JetsInsider.com Photo)

Jets NT Kris Jenkins, who has been sidelined with a calf injury since week 1 of camp is back to the delight of all. (JetsInsider.com Photo)

Kris Jenkins participated in all parts of practice for the second consecutive day, and cornerback Darrell Revis was also with the first team defense, their sights set on seeing time in Saturday’s matchup. 

“It’s just nice to have everybody out there,”  head coach Rex Ryan said.  “We’ve had some bumps and bruises, which I guess were just minor injuries, but guys are starting to get back.  I don’t know if everybody will play in this game against the Giants, but I’m hopeful they’ll get in and see some action, whether it’s just for a series or two.” 

“When I was told I could go back out on the field by the trainers and practice, they told me it was going to be their decision,”  Jenkins said of his chances of playing Saturday.  “All I’m trying to do is make sure I do what they tell me to do, so that I’m healthy for the longevity of the season.  So if I’m good to go, and they approve, then I’ll be playing this week.  But if they don’t, I won’t.  I just have to go off what they tell me right now.”

As camp breaks, it’s certainly a welcomed sight to see these two stars back in full-speed action.  Each player is one of the best at his respective position you’ll find anywhere in the league, and when healthy, they can take this defense to heights Ryan’s squad reached in Baltimore. 

That may sound like a bold statement, but the unit is talented enough at every level to be one of the elite in the NFL.  Even in a practice setting, it’s tremendous how they swarm to the ball, and the speed with which they do so.   Having these players back in the fold will only heighten the group’s chemistry, and there is still plenty of time before Week One to get all the moving parts in order. 

SANCHEZ SOLID WITH ONES

The newly-minted starting quarterback seemed extremely confident throughout the workout, connecting on three touchdowns to wide receiver Jerricho Cotchery during seven-on-seven drills. 

Regardless of the situation, it appeared the rookie was making a conserted effort to check the ball down if his receivers weren’t open; something the coaching staff must be extremely pleased to see.   In full-team drills, he looked extremely confident in the pocket, and moved through his progessions seemlessly.  No professional athlete will ever tell you that being in a competition affects your play in a negative way, but it almost has to.  Knowing you’re the starter and you’re not competing against anyone gives you a confidence you simply cannot achieve when you’re in the midst of a position battle.  It shows you your coaches are behind you, that they feel you’re the guy that can take them where they want to go. 

Confidence is not something Sanchez ever lacked.  But it has to be a nerve-wracking experience to compete with someone for a job, day-in and day-out.  There will still be bumps in the road, but without the threat of losing the job hanging over his head, you may see them become few and far between.

OTHER INJURY UPDATES

Rookie running back Shonn Greene missed practice today due to a rib injury, and Ryan said the former Iowa Hawkeye will not play in Saturday’s game, and may possibly miss the rest of the preseason.

This is a tough loss for Gang Green.  Hopefully the rookie will able to carry the rock by week one; his speed gives them an outstanding three-back assault when paired with Leon Washington and Thomas Jones.  The league saw what a three-back rotation can do a season ago, when Brandon Jacobs, Derrick Ward and Ahmad Bradshaw became Earth, Wind and Fire for the Giants.  There’s no reason why this group, if Greene can get healthy, can’t do the same.

GHOLSTON GETS THE NOD

With linebacker Calvin Pace set to serve a four-game suspension, Ryan announced second-year backer Vernon Gholston will get his first career start Saturday. 

“I’m just focusing on the fundamental things,”  Gholston said of heading into the weekend.  “It’s a new defense.  I’m just worried about my assignments and things like that.  But you can get away from the fundamental things of being a football player; I missed a tackle I should have made last week, things like that.  I’m just trying to stay disciplined and focus on the fundamentals.”

HUNTER STEALS THE SHOW

There may a new Jet throwing his hat into the ring for the wide receiver competition. 

Offensive lineman Wayne Hunter caught not one, but two balls from qb Erik Ainge on bootlegs during 11-on-11 drills, to raucous cheers from his fellow players. 

“The guys are helping me out with letting me know what my route is in the huddle, and I know they have to go through their progressions first before they come to me,” Hunter said.  “If I’m open, I’m open.  It’s a good thing I can catch the ball.”

“For how big he is, he’s so athletic it’s crazy,”  Ainge said.  It’s amazing what that guy can do, he does stuff like that all the time.”

NEW UNIS UNVEILED

Kerry Rhodes, Jerricho Cotcher, Darrelle Revis, Dustin Keller and D’Brickashaw Ferguson donned the Jets’ new throwback threads for a post-practice event premiering the club’s remade New York Titans uniforms, homage to the franchise’s AFL days. 

The team will wear the new unis on September 27 against the Indianapolis Colts, and November 1 against the Miami Dolphins. 

Kickoff for Saturday’s game at the Meadowlands is scheduled for 8:00 PM.  You can catch the action on NBC.

Jets Seek Prospect to Suit Up and Lead Team Out of Tunnel

Tryouts Now Being Held Online at Jointhejets.com for Fan Appreciation Day

The Jets launched a nationwide search for a new recruit to suit up and lead the team out of the tunnel on October 18 when the Buffalo Bills visit the Meadowlands. 

In a press conference to announce the search at the Atlantic Health Jets Training Center, Vice President of College Scouting Joey Clinkscales laid out the team’s criteria for the ideal prospect. “We need someone with a passion for the game, unwavering commitment as well as real mental and physical toughness,” Clinkscales said. “Specifically, we are looking at cheering decibel levels, out-of-chair vertical leap and, of course, a passion for tailgating.”

Clinkscales indicated that the team will waste no time putting this new recruit to work. On October 18, the rookie will suit up and lead the team out of the tunnel to take on the Bills. Anyone who thinks they have what it takes to lead the team can try out online by signing up for the Join the Jets Sweepstakes at www.jointhejets.com. Forward this to your friends and receive multiple chances to win.

Jets Head Coach Rex Ryan stressed the importance of this every-down player. “This guy is going to be critical to the success of our team,” Ryan said. “The Meadowlands must be a miserable place for our opponents to play.  I know this new addition can do just that.”

The Jets host their second annual Fan Appreciation Day on October 18 when they play the Buffalo Bills at 4:15 pm.

Jets-Ravens preview: Getting you ready for the Ryan Bowl

Sunday, August 23rd, 2009

With a little over 24 hours remaining until the Jets’ Monday night showdown in Baltimore, I’m here to get you up to speed for the prime-time affair with some key points to watch for in Gang Green’s second preseason tilt.

How will Mark Sanchez fare against Baltimore’s stingy defense?

The Jets quarterback race has reached the final stretch and Mondays performance will give Rex Ryan a true indication (JI Photo)

The Jets' quarterback race has reached the final stretch and Monday's performance will give Rex Ryan a true indication (JI Photo)

The rookie will get the start with the first team offense against one of the premier defensive units in the game, and if you think this is happening purely because of a “rotation,” you’re kidding yourself. Head coach Rex Ryan and his staff want to see how the rookie will handle himself against a furious pass rush like the Ravens’, because they want to see if his progression will allow him to start for the Jets in week one.

“Nothing specific,” Ryan said of what he expects from Sanchez. “I think just go out and play quarterback. Do your thing. And by the way, that other team over there is pretty good on defense. They’re going to be looking to hunt. They’re going to get after him just like we’ll be looking to get after their quarterback. It’s going to be fun. It’ll be good to watch. It’s going to be closer to regular season tempo than any preseason game. I know the way the Ravens play. They’re going to give us everything they (have) and we’re going to give them everything we (have). Did we game-plan them? No, there hasn’t been a single thing game-planning wise. I bet you they have.”

I know the way John (Harbaugh) is. I know the way Cam (Cameron) is. I guarantee they’ve game-planned us, but that doesn’t matter because it’s more about you putting 11 against 11. Let’s see what happens. This is an attitude game. It’s going to be great because Baltimore is physical as a football team. Baltimore, Pittsburgh and the Giants probably (are as physical) as any team in the league. That’s what we want to be,” Ryan said.

Ryan’s not looking for anything specific, unless Sanchez is planning on starting for this team from week one. He wants to see if he can handle one of the most physical defenses in the NFL, and whether or not he can avoid the turnovers the Ravens’ defensive unit is known for creating. This is such a great test for both Gang Green quarterbacks, in fact, that both signal callers will play in the first half against the starters and Ryan said in his press conference yesterday that a decision on the starting quarterback spot could be made after Monday’s action.

“Every day is that way,” Sanchez said of the preseason competition. “Every drill, every rep. If you put too much pressure on yourself and make this the game where you have to do everything and do it all right, then you are just going to drive yourself crazy. My main goal is, one, have great tempo coming out of the huddle. No delay of game penalties, no negative plays, especially on first-and-10. Be smart with the football, don’t turn it over. Whatever it takes, throw the ball away, take a sack, just don’t give it to the defense, because they’re good. The other thing, just be a leader. Be accurate, make positive plays. Eliminate negative plays and see what happens. It can’t be an all-or-nothing deal or it’s not going to work out right.,” he said.

All eyes will be on the rookie, which means fourth-year pro Kellen Clemens must have a solid night to remain in the running for the starting gig.

Baltimores stingy defense will offer a tough test for David Clowney and the rest of the Jets inexperienced receivers (JI Photo).

Baltimore's stingy defense will offer a tough test for David Clowney and the rest of the Jets' inexperienced receivers (JI Photo).

Who will separate themselves in the battle for the number two receiver slot?

Each of the players in the running for the job had solid nights in the team’s first preseason game against the Rams, so going against Baltimore’s defense will be a good test for the receivers as well.

“That one is a little easier,” Ryan said of the competition. “You get to evaluate. You throw guys in. They can play throughout the game. How can you not be impressed with what David Clowney did (against St. Louis)? And topping that off, the year before (he) led the NFL in receiving yards in the preseason. Then, he breaks his collarbone and he doesn’t get to play. This guy is coming off not just one great game but he’s coming off a preseason last year as well. That’s exciting. I think (Chansi) Stuckey has had an outstanding camp. And then (there’s) Brad Smith. We all know the kind of athlete he is, but those two catches he made the other day (during practice) when we’ve got to have it and he worked himself open using his big body to grab two touchdowns on the last play of our simulated games, that’s big time. That’s him. If you look at the talent and match him up talent-wise with other guys, he should be a big-time receiver. It should be sitting right in front of us. We’ve got some guys with unique skill sets, that should be great competition. Wallace (Wright) is tough as heck. I don’t think we’re near as bad as people think we are. I feel good about our guys and the first preseason game showed that,” he explained.

Each receiver has done plenty during camp to show why the deserve the role, so how they fare in the second preseason affair could be huge as training camp winds down.

How do the players returning from injury look, and how much can they play?

Center Nick Mangold is likely to play Monday night, which is a good sign for the offensive line. Cornerback Darrelle Revis has participated in practices, but still isn’t going full speed. His participation in the game is unlikely, and the same goes for Jets guard Alan Faneca. The Jets have been marred by injuries in the beginning part of camp, so it will be interesting to see who can go, and for how long, as they take another step towards week one.



Rain, rain, go away

Wednesday, August 19th, 2009
Rex Ryan sounded optimistic today about the health of Pro Bowler Nick Mangold (JI Photo).

Rex Ryan sounded optimistic today about the health of Pro Bowler Nick Mangold (JI Photo).

A rain-shortened day of camp wasn’t without some good news on the Jets’ injury front.

Center Nick Mangold is progressing nicely after injuring his knee early in camp, and head coach Rex Ryan said the Ohio State product appears to be on track to play in the club’s next preseason game against the Baltimore Ravens. Mangold missed the team’s preseason opener, along with offensive line teammates Alan Faneca (broken middle finger) and Damien Woody (concussion).

“We’ll see, but I definitely think he’s headed in that direction,” head coach Rex Ryan said of the center at his press conference Tuesday afternoon.

As for the other injured members of Gang Green, cornerback Darrelle Revis and defensive tackle Kris Jenkins participated in individual drills this morning, but wouldn’t have participated in group drills during the afternoon session had it taken place. Ryan ended the practice early after a driving rainstorm swept through Cortland.

Patience is the measure being taken with the two defensive stars for the time being, but it’s certainly a positive to see them being worked back into the daily grind of training camp.

“We weren’t going to put them in any team drills or anything like that,” Ryan said. “It’s progressing slowly, but it is progressing with Kris. I think he’d rather go out there on the practice field than face the punishment from (head strength and conditioning coach) Sal (Alosi). I think that’s the way all of them feel, but Sal’s going to get them back and get them healthy.”

Jenkins also missed last Saturday’s opener.

NEVER SHY-

Jets head coach Rex Ryan has made it perfectly clear that hes not intimidated by Bill Belichick or his Super Bowl rings (JI Photo).

Jets head coach Rex Ryan has made it perfectly clear that he's not intimidated by Bill Belichick or his Super Bowl rings (JI Photo).

Yesterday, it was Ryan’s former team, the Ravens, who took the brunt of the seemingly daily verbal shots from the rookie head coach. Today, it was the club’s rivals to the north, the New England Patriots, who were the topic of conversation.

“We’re not going to just tiptoe our way through this thing,” he said. “You don’t win and beat a Bill Belichick-coached team by tiptoeing up there. We’re going to be ourselves and I’m going to be myself and that’s just the way it is. How much more motivation are they going to get by putting a quote from Rex Ryan on their wall saying I believe in my football team and that I’m not going to be intimidated by a coach or anybody else? If that’s where you’re going to draw motivation from, hell, we’re probably going to kick your (butt) if that’s the case.”

You’ve got to love the gusto of the new head man, and he’s exactly right. What would you like him to say, that he thinks his team will go up to New England and get run out of the building? Of course he believes in his team. Why shouldn’t he? He has a talented squad that can compete.

Fans and media alike crucified Eric Mangini for being less fun in an interview than watching paint dry, and now a large portion of the sporting world thinks Ryan needs to “tone it down.” Professional sports is littered with coaches and players who refuse to deviate from their perfectly-tailored cliches, and we constantly complain about how they never really say anything of substance. Yet here stands Ryan, a man who’s confident in his abilities as a coach and the team he’s inherited, and there’s a growing population of sports fans who just wish he would shut his mouth.

You may be in that corner, however Rex Ryan is the breath of fresh air we need in the sports world. Outspoken, honest, and most importantly, human. He says the things that you wish all our prominent sports figures would say. And that’s something that should be embraced.

Ryan’s talk could certainly serve as bulletin-board material for the Patriots. The Jets open their last season at the Meadowlands against their rivals Sept. 20. The two are also scheduled for another late-season battle in Foxboro on Nov. 22.

RAMS 23- JETS 20

Friday, August 14th, 2009

Normally, preseason football is simply about getting your reps, and making sure nobody gets hurt.

But for a team, and a fanbase, that’s pinned their hopes on the right arm of a charismatic rookie quarterback, tonight was different. In what turned out to be a seesaw battle filled with big plays and late-game drama, the buzz following the final whistle was about one player, and one player only.

Jets QB Mark Sanchez looks downfield for WR David Clowney and completes his first NFL pass for 48 yards. (JetsInsider.com Photo)

Jets QB Mark Sanchez looks downfield for WR David Clowney and completes his first NFL pass for 48 yards. (JetsInsider.com Photo)

You could feel the electricity mounting as Mark Sanchez began warming up late in the first quarter. As he jogged on to the field for the first time as a professional, the half-empty stadium erupted with a roar normally reserved for frigid Sundays in December, and a standing ovation set aside for players you expect will one day lead your team to the promised land.

They wanted to see something from the guy the Jets traded up in the 2009 draft to get, the one who’s expected to lead Gang Green for the next decade. And on his first play from scrimmage, the Southern Cal product gave them just that.

His first pass as an NFL player was a beautiful 48-yard strike down the sideline to wide receiver David Clowney to end the first quarter, and the rookie didn’t stop there. With his family in attendance, the rookie went 3-4 in his lone drive of the game, guiding the Jets down the field on an eight-play, 93-yard touchdown drive capped by a Thomas Jones one-yard run.

“It’s really good,” Sanchez said of his first NFL experience. “It’s really special to me to have my family here. To hear the roar of the crowd when we run out of the tunnel and to complete a big play on your very first NFL pass ever, that was pretty fun and I’m glad it finally came together.”

Jets S Kerry Rhodes and QB Mark Sanchez joke on the sidelines after Sanchezs TD drive. (JetsInsider.com Photo)

Jets S Kerry Rhodes and QB Mark Sanchez joke on the sidelines after Sanchez's TD drive. (JetsInsider.com Photo)

“For a rookie to step in there like that on his first throw and unleash one like that, that is pretty impressive to me,” head coach Rex Ryan said.

Yes, the calendar still reads August. And yes, it was only one series in a preseason game. But the rookie signal caller did a lot of good things in his NFL debut when taking a closer look.

The pass play to Clowney was made possible by the pump fake Sanchez orchestrated to get his receiver a step. He was 3-4 for 88 yards on the drive, yes, but he also converted a third-and-ten with a pass to tight end Dustin Keller, which brought his team to the St. Louis two.

Jets WR David Clowney celebrates after scoring on a 50 yard TD pass from Eric Ainge. (JetsInsider.com Photo)

Jets WR David Clowney celebrates after scoring on a 50 yard TD pass from Eric Ainge. (JetsInsider.com Photo)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Big Apple is known for placing seemingly unattainable expectations on the faces of its respective franchises. Sanchez is expected to be the next Broadway Joe, and only time will tell if he can be. But tonight we got a fleeting glimpse of the guy the franchise has put their faith in, and at least for one night in August, things are looking up.

CLEMENS SOLID IN FIRST TEAM ACTION

On the other side of the qb battle, Kellen Clemens was 4-4 in two series with the first team offense for a total of 24 yards, leading the Jets to three points. He did lose a fumble on a sack by Rams defensive end Leonard Little deep in Jets territory, something that will need to be fixed before the club’s next preseason game.

“It was good,” Clemens said of his short stint of action. “We had a lot of positives come out of it. On the second drive we got stopped on the 4th-and-one down in the red zone but we got a field goal out of it. We are going to try to eliminate the turnovers we got on the strip-sack. We’ll get that patched up in practice and be ready to go next week in Baltimore.”

SACK-HAPPY D

Rex Ryan-lead defenses get to the quarterback, and this unit appears to be no different.

The Jets starting defense played into the early parts of the second half, registering four sacks before reserves took the field.

“When you stop the run early and get the team in third and long situations, it’s an opportunity for us to bring out our blitz package,” linebacker Bart Scott said. “So if we continue to stop teams on first and second down, we can have fun and continue to get those types of plays on third downs.”

New Jets LB Bart Scott expects big things from the Jets defense this season. (JetsInsider.com Photo)

LB Bart Scott has big expectations for the Jets defense this season. (JetsInsider.com Photo)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“It’s risk, but not reckless risk. It’s all calculated and simulated pressure. It’s pressure when there isn’t supposed to be pressure. It’s an intelligent way of doing things.”

BIG NIGHT FOR CLOWNEY

Hauling in Mark Sanchez’s first completed pass as a pro wasn’t the only accomplishment David Clowney made tonight. The receiver added two more receptions, including a 50-yard touchdown catch from Eric Ainge in the fourth quarter, totaling 102 yards in all.

“We certainly saw his speed tonight,” Ryan said of his receiver. “I guess they should have read the bio.”

“I know I started off OTAs kind of slow,” Clowney said. “I definitely wanted to get (the coaches’) attention and let them know, just cause I had a minor setback, doesn’t mean I can’t do what I did last year as well.”

With the battle for the number two receiver slot anyone’s to win, tonight’s performance certainly puts Clowney’s name in the discussion heading into next week.

MUCH WORK TO BE DONE

While there were many positives from Gang Green’s opener, the scoreboard still wasn’t in their favor when the clock read zeros. Ryan feels there’s plenty of work to do to get this squad ready for the opener, mainly on the defensive side of the ball.

“I told the team, I hate losing,” he said. “I don’t care whether it’s preseason or not. It stinks. We made way too many mistakes on defense with the third unit. Sometimes, unfortunately, this game is too big for some people at times, that’s why not everybody makes this team. I’m looking for Jets. I’m looking for passionate, tough people who are smart. We’ve got to getter. We’ve got to tackle better.”

On the positive side, Ryan liked what he saw from the first team defense, and from his three quarterbacks who saw action tonight (Erik Ainge finished 10-17 for 148 yards and a touchdown).

“I thought the one defense bowed their necks pretty good. I think they were 0-5 on third down in the first half, so the first defense I think did pretty decent. I was really happy with the way our offense performed, when you consider you have three starting offensive lineman out. I thought our quarterbacks were outstanding, all three of them, today.”

NO QB DECISION

As for who will start under center in ten days when the Jets take on the Baltimore Ravens, Ryan offered up no indication of which way he was leaning after tonight’s action. With both quarterbacks looking solid, it looks like the battle will rage on into 2009’s second preseason game.

The Jets head to Cortland for their last week of camp before they permanently return to Florham Park. They’ll hit the road for their second preseason game on August 24 against the Baltimore Ravens. Kickoff is set for 8:00 PM.

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