Rex makes the case for Revis
Rex Ryan might have made his share of mistakes during his first season as a head coach, but there’s one thing nobody can criticize him for; his ability to use the rabid New York media to his, and his team’s, advantage.
He’s used his puppets to help rile up the Jets’ faithful on more than one occasion, and following Thursday’s workout, he did his best pitch-man impersonation, hopefully starting the publicity campaign to get the best player on the best defense in the NFL some postseason hardware.
I speak, of course, of all-universe cornerback Darrelle Revis, the shut-down defender who’s taken his place amongst the best in the game in his second season in the league.
“I went back and looked and I was going to be subtle about this, but if he’s not the NFL Defensive Player of the Year something is wrong with the system,” Ryan said. “Nobody and I mean nobody in maybe the history of the game has had the challenges that he’s faced week in and week out. You look at the top receivers in this game now that he’s gone out and matched with and literally almost shut down.”
The list Ryan speaks of is a who’s-who of the best wideouts in the league: Andre Johnson, Randy Moss (twice), Terrell Owens (twice), and Steve Smith are the biggest names, which makes the dominating work #24’s done over this season even more impressive.
But what makes him even more impressive still is that in an era of NFL football in which the rules have been shifted so dramatically with penalties (such as illegal contact, and more frequent pass interference penalties) that favor the offense, Revis might be the lone true “cover corner” we’ve seen since Deion Sanders.
Very rarely, if ever, do the Jets put a safety over the top to help him on the premier receivers he covers. He almost never blitzes – why blitz someone who is single-handedly shutting down an entire half of the field? He’s simply covering the receiver to which he’s assigned, doing his job more precisely and dominantly than anyone else in the game.
You can toss out names like Charles Woodson and Darren Sharper as candidates for Defensive Player of the Year, and they’re both very deserving candidates. But they cannot do what Revis does game in, and game out. With no help whatsoever, he shuts down the best wide receivers in the league, time after time. We’re witnessing the blossoming of one of the definitive defensive talents of this generation of NFL football, and there’s still plenty more to come. Coach Ryan’s convinced those in the media who didn’t really need convincing at all; Darrelle Revis needs to be the Defensive Player of the Year, or as Coach Ryan said, the system is very, very wrong.
Number six took about 75% of the snaps in today’s workout, and seemed to be moving very well through his drills. Ryan still remains cautiously optimistic that Sanchez will play Sunday, but still offered no definitive statement on the qb’s status.
One thing we do know for sure, however, is that the expected inclimate weather at Giants Stadium Sunday afternoon will have no bearing on the decision to start Sanchez against the Atlanta Falcons. Throughout the barrage of questions hurled at Ryan about #6, we also learned that if he does play, he’ll be wearing a brace on each knee, and that the last hurdle that needs to be passed is how he feels the morning after a full workout, which he’ll experience tomorrow. They’re treating the kid with kid gloves, and with good reason. Judging by the way he moved around today during practice, though, my guess is that you’ll see him on the field Sunday afternoon.
The team returns to practice Friday morning for a workout beginning at 11:50 AM. Be sure to check back to JetsInsider.com for all your news and updates.
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