From Erik Boland's Blog, Transcript Of Mark Sanchez's First Presser
Mark Sanchez Meets The Press
And handles it with relative ease.
Say this for the headliner draft pick of the weekend: he certainly sounds the part of franchise quarterback. That, as we all know, is the easy part, though. We'll get a glimpse at him on the field this weekend during the rookie minicamp.
Here is the transcript of Sanchez, wearing a three-pieice suit complete with green tie,meeting with the media this afternoon at the Fort. Some of the answers are similar to those given during his Saturday conference call; but there's some new stuff, too, including the fact he placed a call to Kellen Clemens shortly after he was picked:
I just want to start and say thank you guys for being here. This is a special day as you can imagine. As you can see, my whole family is here and that will give you guys a chance to see what we are all about. Our family is pretty tight knit and very supportive, so I feel right at home here with the Jets. Itís a tight-knit group and a family, not just a football team. I am just thrilled that Mr. Johnson and Mr. Tannenbaum, Coach Ryan, Coach Schottenheimer and Coach Cavanaugh thought enough of me to make the trade that they did. That meant a lot. I am going to get used to the Atlantic Health New York Jets Training Center. Itís going to be a blast and I am excited for these next few years.
On receiving jersey #6 from Reggie Hodges...
We worked out a small side agreement. Weíll leave it at that for now. We are still working over things, but we might still be doing some trades. He was nice enough to give it to me and I am very grateful. It means a lot.
On his conference call with the media prior to the draftÖ
I said, ďI donít know, maybe they donít like me anymore,Ē but itís obvious they do. Itís been very special. In talking to my agent, Dave Dunn, itís very rare that you find a team that you like so much and you end up getting drafted by them. You are usually heart-broken on draft day. I tried not to get too attached, but I just had such a great time at dinner with them. I loved the work out and I felt comfortable with Coach Schottenheimer when he worked me out at my high school. Itís just been a fun ride so far and a lot more successful and fun days are ahead.
On whether he paid attention to Matt Ryan, Joe Flacco and other rookies...
I think they did a fantastic job where they were, especially coming in as rookies and leading their teams to the playoffs. They are just anomalies among rookie quarterbacks. Itís very special. If that is the case here and I am starting right away, obviously those are some serious goals - the playoffs, our division, things like that. It is going to start from day one and there is a lot of work ahead. This isnít an endpoint. Getting here is about winning regular season games, and playoffs and championships. It is about hard work and dedication and that is what Coach Ryan is all about.
On having confidence in the systemÖ
Absolutely and knowing the system Iím coming from with Coach Sarkisian and Coach Carroll, it translated well to my meetings with Coach Schottenheimer and Coach Cavanaugh. Itís similar concepts, similar reads, a lot of emphasis on the quarterback, like Iím used to, and thatís important. Like I said, for them to think enough to do what they did to get me means a lot and Iím excited about it.
On why his personality will help him succeed in New York both on the field and offÖ
My family background has always been very supportive. Theyíre going to be there for me no matter what. The media training I had at USC, a pretty large media market, not quite as big as New York, itís only going to get bigger and better, but I think that helps. At USC, they put a lot of emphasis on the quarterback with Heisman trophy winners, All-Americans and national champions and they want results, just like the fans here, just like the press here. Thatís what they want. Thatís what Iím prepared to work for, obviously, and with such a great team around me now itís going to be a blast.
On the last 24 hours and advice heís been givenÖ Itís been a whirlwind tour as you can imagine. I was here for the beginning parts of the draft and then flew out draft day. I was waiting on the phone, got the call from Mr. Tannenbaum and just went nuts. The whole family was there and had a blast. Then, we flew back last night at midnight and got here this morning, I was asleep on the plane the whole way and they were nice enough to fly out the whole family. Itís been fun for us. We still have a long ways to go today, we are going down to Radio City Music Hall and weíre giving my family a taste of my new home.
On what distinguished the meeting with the Jets from other teams that were interestedÖ
When we were talking about the playbook with Coach Schottenheimer, I felt comfortable just talking to him and Coach Ryan was great. We were talking about defense, the Xís and Oís side and just having fun together. It wasnít as stressful. It was serious, it was about ball, but I just felt calm and comfortable and confident in that setting. Mr. Johnson and I were talking about the new stadium at dinner, Coach Ryan had a blast at dinner too, he loved his dessert there. It was great [laughter], so it was fun, it was a great time.
On impression of Coach Ryanís demeanorÖ
My high school coach is pretty similar, an easy-going kind of guy, but when its football time, people know. Itís obvious he knows how to flip that switch. He just has a quiet calm about him. Heís personable, affable and he was really excited to see me today so it was a great meeting between he and I.
On who was there with him...
My momís here, Olga, sheís here with my step-mom, Maddy, my dad, Nick, Paula my sister- in law, my middle brother Brandon, and Nicko my nephew. My oldest brother, Nick, is in the back, and Dave Dunn, my agent. So the whole crew.
On the biggest challenge...
Thereís going to be a ton of challenges. One is just the locker room setting. Thereís guys here, even in the huddle, whoíve been in this League for a while, maybe five plus years, and I have tremendous respect for those veterans, but at the same time itís about coming into my own, maturing as an NFL quarterback and speaking their language along with the offense. Thatís going to be a challenge, getting in the playbook, getting in the system, speaking their language exactly like they do and then just competing for my spot.[B] I have tremendous respect for Kellen (Clemens) as well. I spoke to him yesterday, and heís great. Weíre with the same agency so itís going to be fun for us. Weíre great friends about it and weíll be competitive. Itíll be the regular rookie feelings for me and excitement. Itís going to be a great challenge, but Iím ready for it.
On who initiated the phone call between he and Clemens ...
I gave him a call. I said ďHey Kellen, itís Mark, and he said Hey, how are you doing man? Congratulations, welcome to the Jets family.Ē That was one of the first things he said so you can tell heís a first class guy. For him to be able to do that and talk to me the way he did, he said, Ďyou know man, weíre going to have fun together, youíll get along with coach Rex and coach Schottenheimer.í We had a good talk.[/B]
On whether or not that call was important...
Absolutely. I met him before at a golf tournament for our agency so it made things a lot better. Itís great.
On if his intangibles are as important as his tangibles...
I think so. Thatís just me being excited about playing and when you get in the huddle itís not just spitting out a play verbatim and coughing up what the coach said. You have to tell them whatís going on and give them an alert. Tell them, ĎHey, weíre in the red zoneí and that might click to one of the receivers, ĎAlright, this is how I run my route in the red zone.í So things like that you learn. I learned that from Carson (Palmer) and Matt [Leinart] and John David (Booty) and it just kind of transferred over into my game. Those intangibles are important. The locker room presence. Itís not about talking all the time and saying too much and coming in thinking too much, expecting too much. Itís about being a guide and just letting them know, ĎHey Iím here to work.í Weíve got a lot of work to go and Iím trying to be one of you guys, trying to be one of the Jets family.
On how much it means being a quarterback coming from USC...
Itís pretty special. I come from an elite fraternity, and Iím flattered to be a part of it. Iím honored and Iíve learned a ton. From the way Carson (Palmer) was, I mean he went from, getting killed his first four years and people were down on him, and to see his perseverance. It was the same with John David (Booty) when he got hurt his senior year. I stepped in for him and people really turned on him, and he came back and finished the season well. Iíve seen how quarterbacks have the potential to get broken as soon as people get down on them and those guys just popped right back up. Thatís important in this game to be resilient and to work and thatís what I plan to do.
On how top rated quarterbacks entering the draft donít usually perform at the combine and does his decision to perform offer insight into his personality...
I think so. I remember having a conversation with Dave Dunn where he asked if I did want to work out. I said, ďAre you kidding me? What else would I do? Iím a quarterback. Iím here to throw. Iím here to work.Ē Thatís what Iím about-being a gym rat. I think thatís what this team and the ownership saw in me so, thatís really important. Iím really into that. Iím excited about playing ball. I was excited about draft day. It was a blast. This mini-camp, these next few weeks, being in New York, being at the facility, hanging around, watching film, getting into the play book, thatís the best part.
On Pete Carrollís reactionÖ He was so excited. ďHe said man youíre going to New York from Los Angeles. You couldnít write it any better.Ē I agree. Itís a special place to be. He gave me some advice on the city, told me where to go, the hotspots. I said, Ďman that was a long time agoí (laughter).
On Pete Carroll and his initial reaction that Sanchez should not enter the draftÖ
Coach Carroll is so competitive and I think that really took a negative spin. Heís been so supportive. We disagreed on one issue, and heís competing to get me back on his team, and I took it as a form of respect. Really, he has been so supportive. Iím a huge Coach Carroll fan. He had the draft streaming on the megatron in the coliseum and he would take timeouts when all the players were being drafted: me, (Brian) Cushing, and (Rey) Maualuga. As soon as I went number five, boom, Jets trade up with the Browns, Sanchez to the Jets, the place went nuts. He said it was the biggest draft party. Over 25,000 fans just went roaring in the Coliseum, so he was very excited for me.
On coming in with only 16 games of starting experienceÖ
Those 16 games have been very meaningful. Theyíve been in a pro style system, like I alluded to before. Theyíve been on national stages. Every game here with the Jets is a Rose Bowl game. I know what that feels like. I know the anticipation. I know what it feels like to throw balls in the Rose Bowl, national implications, bowl implications. Now it will be a two-minute drill to win the division and USC has really prepared me for that. Itís going to be versus the best competition in practice and in the games, against the Ohio States, the Penn States. Every year itís Cedric Ellis, Lawrence Jackson, (Brian) Cushing, Clay (Matthews), all those guys, every year they are the first eight guys. In a USC practice, itís one on ones everyday. Itís competitive and Iíve been able to handle the media pretty well in LA and this is obviously a step up. Iíll learn a lot along the way and I have a great staff around me and people to really help out. They have been really supportive up until this point.
On role media plays in the success of a quarterbackÖ
Winning is the equalizer. If youíre winning, whether you throw two picks or two touchdowns, it changes how the quarterback plays (in the media). Thatís no doubt. Itís obvious with Joe Flaccoís performance last year. He did awesome and heís taken his team to the playoffs, but some games werenít the best statistically and he would say that too. He didnít have the best quarterback rating but they won the game and I can tell with Coach Ryan thatís what they are about here. Weíre going to have fun while we do it. Theyíre going to give us every opportunity they can. I mean look at this place (Atlantic Health Training Facility), itís unbelievable. Iíve never seen anything like it. As far as the media goes, itís something that can help your team when you are winning and when things are down its tough. They are tough on you. There is a tight knit family here. I can feel that. Whatever happens, win or lose, this is going to be a great place to play.
On his arm strengthÖ
Deceptively strong (laughter). Donít worry about the wind. We will be alright.
On getting a deal in place and the possibility of holding outÖ
Weíll get it done. In this process, I already feel I am in the hunt. I need to get in this place right now. I need as many reps as possible.
On what he learned from his off the field challengesÖ
There were no charges there. It was simply false allegations, but in that kind of situation, youíre in a huge media spotlight just like here with the Jets. People know where you go, where you go to eat, who you are dating, and things like that. To be in a situation like that, it taught me so much especially without having any of the consequences because they werenít deserved. It was crazy. But you learn the kind of spotlight, the kind of pressure you are under, how important it is to be in the right situations and to trust the people around you. I can tell that I can trust the people here and Iíve learned quite a lot to bring family back into that process. Itís really only been the only blemish on my record, and you talk to character references and nobody believed it. It was crazy. So it was great to come out of that. I have a strong family around me and nothing like that has happened or will happen again.