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Prepared to Surge Ahead

By John Melillo
Jets Insider.com, Staff Writer
November 3rd, 2004

After their Monday night landslide victory over the Miami Dolphins, the Jets improved to 6-1 and now share first place with the New England Patriots. Head coach Herm Edwards addressed the state of a team holding one of the best records in the NFL.

After their Monday night landslide victory over the Miami Dolphins, the Jets improved to 6-1 and now share first place with the New England Patriots. Head coach Herm Edwards addressed the state of a team holding one of the best records in the NFL.

“I think they’ll react well,” Edwards said in how the team would handle success. “It’s a young team, a new team. Since I’ve been here, we’ve been the dog chasing the car. Right now, we’re in the car. We’re not chasing it.”

Edwards does acknowledge the additional pressure the team encounters when they sit atop of the division.

“It’s a lot harder,” Edwards said. “It’s more pressure on you when you’re in the lead because you know everyone’s nipping at you.”

With all eyes on Gang Green, Quarterback Chad Pennington expressed optimism for the remainder of the season in his discussion with the NY media this morning. At 6-1, Pennington feels the club should be recognized as one of the elite teams in football.

“Absolutely,” Pennington said. “I think we have a chance. We have always felt that way since the OTA’s and training camp. As long as we prepare, continue to learn and make progress, we will always have a chance.”

Pennington agrees with Coach Edwards on the battle the team faces on remaining successful as they head into the last stretch of the season.

“The focus now is how you handle success and making sure you are able to not look too far ahead and make sure it is one game at a time,” Pennington said.

The team’s morale in the locker room has been upbeat, according to Pennington, as they focus on their second meetng with the division rival Buffalo Bills this Sunday.

“When you have a breakout game and you really flip the tables, it says a lot about your team being able to put the loss behind you, put the criticism behind you and focus on what is ahead because that is all you control,” Pennington said.

MISCELLANOUS TIDBITS Former DL Joe Klecko presented RB Curtis Martin as the Snickers’ Hungriest Player for his performance Monday night versus Miami. Martin plans to donate the $1,000 award to the charitable foundation aimed at aiding single parent homes and the homeless…Even with the rash of injuries at the guard position, the team is comfortable with G Dave Yovanovits as a reserve and has no plans to bolster the position via free agency…Rookie LB Jonathan Vilma, who has started since LB Sam Cowart (knee) suffered a knee injury in Week 2, will start the Week 9 game vs. the Bills despite Cowart being listed as probable this week.

INJURY REPORT

Guard Brent Smith (knee) is listed as doubtful this week with a second degree MCL injury to his left knee. Edwards believes Smith could return by Week 10. Defensive coordinator Donnie Henderson told the NY media that LB Sam Cowart (knee), who has been upgraded to probable for the Bills game, continues to work with the scout team in practice. The team wants Cowart to work on his conditioning after the long layoff. Rookie CB Derrick Strait (foot) has also been upgraded to probable for Week 9.

-LB Jason Glenn (arm): Out
-OG Brent Smith (knee): Doubtful
-OG Brandon Moore (hamstring): Questionable
-Rashad Washington (foot): Questionable
LB Sam Cowart (knee): Probable
-CB Derrick Strait (foot): Probable

The Jets will practice tomorrow and Friday in preparation for their second match up with the Buffalo Bills. Check back often to Jets Insider.com for the latest team news and reports.

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