Rich Cimini, the talented Jets beat writer for the NY Daily News, was kind enough to do a fan chat with Jets Insider.com on December 21, 2006. The transcript of the event follows:
[RCimini] 8:03 pm: Ready to talk some Jets?
[WestCoastOffensive] 8:04 pm: Hey hey Thank you Rich for your time
[JumbalayaJet] 8:05 pm: Rich, is Houston badly dinged, and what will it take to jump start the running game? Is our
OL capable of opening the holes?
[RCimini] 8:06 pm: I don't think Houston is going to play this week. Look for Leon and Barlow against a tough Miami
run defense. Yes, I think they can run on Miami, maybe 100-120 yds.
[Slappy McGhee] 8:07 pm: Rich: Mangini says great practice players get playing time but Blaylock is always
inactive. He was practice player of the week. Whey doesn't he get playing time?
[RCimini] 8:08 pm: Good question, Slap. First of all, some of that practice stuff is just lip service from Mangini. I think
he bases personnel decisions on 1. game performance, 2. game-plan strategy, 3. practice performance. I think he
was throwing Blaylock a bone by giving him that recognition.
[Nocomment] 8:10 pm: Rich: Chad has been up and down this year. He had a fine game against Miami the first
time around. Do you think the Jets will rely more on Chad or the run for this game? How effective can Barlow be
[Slappy McGhee] 8:11 pm: Follow up...how did blaylock fall so far?
[RCimini] 8:12 pm: They won't rely on Chad more against Miami than Minny. They will try harder to run the ball.
Miami is a big blitzing team, so you will see quick drops and hot reads. They don't have anyone who can block
Taylor. As for Barlow, you might see 5 carries or so, but I suspect Leon will be the workhorse.
[WestCoastOffensive] 8:12 pm: Rich, any sign that Chad's shoulder is "hitting the wall" so to speak? Is he getting
stronger, or losing strength?
[RCimini] 8:13 pm: West, if Chad's shoulder hit the wall, it would've happened a while ago. Do I think he's throwing as
well as he did in September? No. But let's keep it in perspective. He had 2 operations. With a full offseason to train,
and not rehab, he should be stronger next year.
[Jetspennyfan] 8:13 pm: Rich, what do most of the Jets REALLY think about Miller being their only Pro-Bowler, and
is Mangini using this as a way to pump them up for the game against the Dolphins?
[RCimini] 8:15 pm: Maybe I'm missing something, but I didn't sense any outrage in the locker room. Watch,
Cannizzaro will have that story in tomorrow's paper, kicking my butt. But, seriously, I didn't get that vibe from any
players. Really, who got snubbed? Rhodes? Coles? You could make an argument for them, but no one else.
[SAR I] 8:15 pm: Rich: What's your take on Kellen Clemens progress this season? Many Jets fans see Vince
Young, Jay Cutler, and Two Time National Champion and Heisman Trophy Winner Matt Leinart getting valuable
experience and contributing as bonafide NFL starters. Have you seen anything from Kellen at all in practice to let
you know that he's a player? Have you heard any inside scoop on whether the Jets are still high on him and/or
regrest on passing on some of these other QB's?
[RCimini] 8:17 pm: As you know, we don't watch practice, but from what I hear, the team still is very high on
Clemens. He should be their No. 2 next season, although I suspect they'll bring in another vet as insurance. Clemens
has Chad-like intangibles, with a better arm. They really like him.
[SAR I] 8:17 pm: Great news. Thanks.
[Ikeyman3] 8:17 pm: Do you think the Jets will be big players in the free agent market this offseason or will they try
to build through the draft as the Patriots do? What positions do you think the Jets will target in the first couple of
rounds of the draft?
[RCimini] 8:20 pm: They will have about $27 M in cap room, so they can spend big bucks on a couple of free agents.
Keep an eye on RB Michael Turner and CB Asante Samuel. In the first 2 rounds, obviously, they need a DE, DT, RB,
[Jets Babe] 8:21 pm: Rich: Whats up with Coles? I heard he didnt practice this week. Think he'll play this week?
He's a tough player...but thats really not like Coles to NOT practice...
[RCimini] 8:23 pm: Coles has been out there at practice, in uniform. I'd be shocked if he doesn't play. He will play.
[JMac] 8:23 pm: Mangold got nicked a little last week. Did he practice as usual, and will be be at 100% for Miami?
[RCimini] 8:24 pm: Mangold is a special dude. Nothing fazes him. He has missed only one snap all season. He has
been practicing and he will defnitely play.
[freestater] 8:24 pm: Rich, How about the right side of the O-Line? Does the Coaching staff seem to be OK with their
[freestater] 8:25 pm: will we be seeing replacements theis offseason?
[RCimini] 8:27 pm: Anthony Clement is strictly a stop-gap player. By my count, he has allowed about 10 sacks. If
he's the starter in 07, they have problems. They really like this young kid, Na'Shan Goddard. This, too, is another
area that will be addressed in the draft. RG Brandon Moore is solid and signed for several years. They like him.
[SAR I] 8:27 pm: Rich: Knowing what we know now, did Mike Tannenbaum underestimate the potential of the 2006
Jets and overreact in the offseason by committing the team to a rebuild prematurely? Would the Jets not be 1 or 2
games better in the standings today if we had the likes of a Mawae, Law, or Abraham and drafted for need (RB) and
picked up some quality win-right-now free agents? Isn't the possibility that Tannenbaum just blew the division the
dark cloud in this year's silver-lining Jets rebuilding story?
[freestater] 8:27 pm: cool, thanks
[RCimini] 8:29 pm: Great question, Sar. Short answer: I think Mike did it the right way, building for the long haul
instead of going for the quick fix. Abe is always hurt, Law is done and Mawae ... he's still good, but I'd rather have a
young Mangold. If you go for the quick fix, you end up in an endless cycle of big contracts and old players.
[Ikeyman3] 8:29 pm: Will the Jets try to sign either Kerry Rhodes, Jerricho Cotchery or Johnathan Vilma to contract
extentions this offseason? Would Woody Johnson reward Mangini with a raise if he makes the postseason as he is
one of the lowest paid coaches in the league "only" making 1.75 MM?
[RCimini] 8:32 pm: Rhodes and Vilma, no -- they're still signed for another 2 years, I believe. Cotchery is up after 07
and discussions could begin in the offseason on a new deal. Woody created a precedent by giving Herm a new deal
after his first season, so it wouldn't surprise me.
[Ikeyman3] 8:32 pm: Thanks
[bill parcells] 8:32 pm: Hi Rich,is Mangini preaching the us against the world mentality this week going to Miami for
[RCimini] 8:33 pm: Tuna, no I don't think he's going that route. It might be us against Santa Claus --only kidding.
There's plenty of built-in incentive for this game.
[Jetspennyfan] 8:34 pm: Rich, whats the story on Curtis Martin, are the Jets very likely going to have him retire, or is
he really serious about coming back, and also one quick thing, I saw a report that Carson Palmer tore his rotator
cuff, do you know if there is any truth to that at all? And will Schottenhiemer be leaving, because lots of people are
saying he might get consideration for a head coaching job?
[bill parcells] 8:34 pm: Thanks Rich
[RCimini] 8:36 pm: Actually, I talked to Curtis briefly today in the locker room. I think the jets want him to retire, and I
suspect he will. He basically announced his retirement the day they put him on IR. He's done. Heard those Palmer
rumors, too, but don't have any confirmation. Schott, I think, has a bright future, but I don't think the head-coaching
nibbles will start this soon -- unless it's a college situation. His alma mater, Florida, is doing pretty well, so I don't
think he'll pull a Groh.
[SAR I] 8:37 pm: Rich: Herman Edwards is enroute to taking a 10-6 Larry Johnson Chiefs team to a terrific 8-8
record via his tremendous game planning, execution, and motivational skills. Can we now look back and say that had
Woody Johnson chosen a better head coach back in 2001 that the Jets might have actually won a Super Bowl? We
now know that those teams made the playoffs on sheer talent alone, being crippled by coaching; is not Herman
Edwards one of the worst head coaches in NYJ history in retrospect?
[RCimini] 8:39 pm: Had a debate with Cannizzaro last week on this very subject. Guess which side he was on? No,
Herm isn't one of the worst HC's in Jets history. What about Kotite? Coslet? Holtz? Winner? He was an average
coach who achieved nice things, in large part, because of circumstances. (good roster, lucking into playoff berths,
[SAR I] 8:40 pm: BUT.....
[SAR I] 8:40 pm: Did he not waste tremendous talent whereas those other bad Jets coaches didn't have the horses?
[freestater] 8:40 pm: He's the DEVIL!!!!!!!!!!
[THE_SOOTHSAYER] 8:40 pm: lol
[VUJetsFan] 8:40 pm: Victor Hobson has been a beast this year. What has propelled him to step up this year, last
year M. Brown played more than he did. Mangini?
[RCimini] 8:40 pm: Whoa! Tremendous talent? Did I miss something? he did have lose his QB in two seasons,
[RCimini] 8:42 pm: VU, Hobson wasn't good in the 4-3 because I don't think he plays well in space. He's better in the
3-4 because he's fairly strong at the point of attack. He's also getting more chances to blitz, which I think is one of
[Slappy McGhee] 8:42 pm: Rich, you've seen a lot of Jets coaches. How do you rate Mangini as a person and
coach. Also, is it weird that it's been so quiet at Hofstra for a change? Usually it's a side show.
[VUJetsFan] 8:42 pm: thanks
[RCimini] 8:45 pm: Slap, yeah, I've seen a lot of Jets coaches. Actually talked to Joe Walton last week. Nice man.
Mangini, too, is a nice guy. It's too early to rate him as a coach, but he clearly knows his stuff, prepares well, runs a
tight ship, has a vision for his program. His future is bright, but remember this is a honeymoon year. No pressure
whatsoever. Next year, different story. Let's see how he handles that before we break out the anointing oils, to quote
for rather portly ex-Jets coach.
[j e t s] 8:45 pm: Rich, what do you think of the lesser known Jets like Sean Ryan. Do lunch pail guys like him have
a future on this team? Love his blocking. I think personnel guys make their money with the smaller moves that turn
out well for depth and specials. Secondly, who is the most responsible on special teams for blowing up the wedges
that Justin Miller always seems to find?
[RCimini] 8:46 pm: Ryan is a versatily guy, can play TE and H-Back. I don't think he's good enough to say he's part
of the future for sure, but he's smart and tough, so that's a good start
[Ikeyman3] 8:46 pm: Who do you think is the Most valuable and who do you think is the Least valuable player on the
2006 Jets? Do you think Mangini's training camp helped reduce the injuries for this season?
[RCimini] 8:48 pm: I agree with Coles as MVP. Would've had Chad a close second. Least valuable? Hmmm. I guess
that means biggest disappointments, so I'd have to go with Adrian Jones, Kimo, Barrett, Barlow, Blaylock.
[RMJK] 8:47 pm: Rich,1. who are you predicting to win Jet-Miami and why? 2. Was Nugent worth a #2 draft spot ?
[RCimini] 8:50 pm: Right now, I'm leaning toward Miami over Jets. Reasons: J Taylor. Home field. Harrington not as
bad as last week. Fins hate Jets. Nugent? Solid kicker, but not worth a No. 2. You can get guys like that off the
[RMJK] 8:50 pm: thanks
[Nocomment] 8:50 pm: Rich: You said there's talk of some interest in Michael Turner of San Diego. How well do you
think Turner can fit into the game plan--currently they rotate backs pretty heavily. While this tactic has worked to
some extent, it doesn't allow a featured back to gain steam and improve as the game goes on. Turner strikes me as
a featured back type of player. If they Mangini grabs Turner, and plans on still having a rotating backfield, how
effective can Turner be?
[RCimini] 8:51 pm: If the Jets get Turner, believe me, Mangini won't be rotating his backs nearly as much. This team
needs a No. 1 back. The committee deal only gets you so far.
[freestater] 8:51 pm: We hear alot of static about Jon Vilma's stats taking a dive in the 3-4, but he seems to lead the
defense. How important has Johnathan been in Kerry Rhodes development?
[RCimini] 8:52 pm: JV has been a positive influence on Kerry. They watch film together 3 nights a week at each
other's house. JV hasn't made any impact plays, but you can't write him off. he's a good player and he'll be better
[Jets Babe] 8:53 pm: i cant believe that cimini is taking th fins over the jets :o
[VUJetsFan] 8:53 pm: [VUJetsFan] 8:44 pm: Looking ahead,
haha, if the jets get in the playoffs which
team do you feel the jets match up well
[RCimini] 8:53 pm: sorry, babe, just a gut feeling.
[freestater] 8:53 pm: thanks, Rich
[freestater] 8:54 pm: for the answer... not the Miami pick, ya bastid!
[RCimini] 8:55 pm: They match up well against the Patriots, obviously. That would be a classic. If they get Balt, it
could be a long day. Balt pressures the QB and would shut down the Jets passing game. Not a good matchup.
[SAR I] 8:55 pm: Rich: Now that the Jets have cheerleaders, what became of the flagboys? Is it true that the
flagboys gave Serby back rubs and get caught and fired and replaced to avoid a scandal?
[SAR I] 8:55 pm: .....just kidding......
[SAR I] 8:55 pm: The real question.....
[Rich - ® ©] 8:56 pm: Now that is the Scott that we all remember....
[SAR I] 8:56 pm: Is Sutton running the D or is it really Mangini since the Cleveland game?
[RCimini] 8:56 pm: How'd you hear the Serby story? Didn't think that would get out. LOL.
[SAR I] 8:56 pm: I won't tell.
[SAR I] 8:56 pm: Is Sutton running the D or is it really Mangini since the Cleveland game?
[RCimini] 8:57 pm: Bob still is calling the defensive plays. Eric is on the phone with him, so he obviously has input,
but Sutton has the calls.
[Queens Jet Fan] 8:57 pm: Just talking about arm strength how would you compare the pre-surgical Pennington to
the Pennington of today?
[THE_SOOTHSAYER] 8:58 pm: CV40 will close us out and then I'm sure Rich has to tuck his kids in.
[RCimini] 8:59 pm: Wow, tough question. I wish I saved tapes from 02. I don't think there's a noticeable difference in
arm strength, but I think now he needs more torque from his legs and midsection to get the ball where he wants it to
go. If he can't step into a throw, it will sail. Maybe, in '02, he didn't have to do that as much.
[CV 40] 9:00 pm: Hey Rich, In my view if the Jets win this game they will basically be in the playoffs. Obviously, a
win against Oakland and alittle help is needed, but I believe that if the Jets win it is 90% Jets will be in it. Do you
[RCimini] 9:02 pm: I think Jax will beat NE. If the Jets win in Miami, it means they have to root for Herm to beat Jax.
Wouldn't that be a kick? Obviously, I don't think the jets would have much trouble with Oakland, which couldn't score
against Stony Brook U.
[Rich - ® ©] 9:02 pm: Is there any chance NE lose both @ Jax and @ TN to close the season?
[THE_SOOTHSAYER] 9:03 pm: Rich, score Sunday?
[RCimini] 9:04 pm: OK, Sooth, a prediction: I know this isn't going to be popular, but I think Miami will win a thriller,
say, 21-17. Don't call me Mr. Negative, because, believe it or not, I've picked the Jets for several weeks in a row. Of
course, I'd like to see them win because that would be the better story and, as you may know, sports writers are
selfish. We always root for the best story.
[freestater] 9:04 pm: dam roofies...
[THE_SOOTHSAYER] 9:04 pm: Fair enough
[meatboy] 9:04 pm: Dolphins are going down baby!
[THE_SOOTHSAYER] 9:04 pm: Everyone please give Rich big thanks for taking time out to spend with us during
this busy holiday time. Great job! Come back soon!
[SAR I] 9:04 pm: THANKS RICH
[freestater] 9:05 pm: Thanks, Mr. Cimini
[Nocomment] 9:05 pm: Thanks, Rich, for your time.
[WestCoastOffensive] 9:05 pm: THANKS BUBBA
[SAR I] 9:05 pm: Been a loyal reader for 15+ years. Have a great holiday. Watch your back around Serby.
[RMJK] 9:05 pm: Rich thanks for your honesty
[freestater] 9:05 pm: Jets 27, Mia- 13
[joekool2] 9:05 pm: Thanks Rich
[ChadLover] 9:05 pm: Thanks Rich
[CV 40] 9:05 pm: Thanks
[freestater] 9:05 pm: thank YOu too, sooth
[RCimini] 9:05 pm: Just wanted to thanks you guys and gals for a good time. You're all very passionate fans, and
you gotta respect that. I loved all your captions with the Sesame Street photo. Funny stuff. You guys should be
writers. God bless, happy holidays.