Blog Entry

Rex Ryan takes his turn defending Mark Sanchez

Posted on: January 13, 2012 5:06 pm
Edited on: January 13, 2012 5:22 pm
Sparano wants to get Sanchez back to 'square one.' (AP)

By Ryan Wilson

Rex Ryan spoke to the media Friday, ostensibly to introduce new Jets offensive coordinator Tony Sparano. The head coach also spent a non-trivial part of the conference call speaking to the quotes from anonymous teammates about quarterback Mark Sanchez, who was described as "lazy" and a "baby."

Nightmare in New York
On Wednesday, center Nick Mangold came out in support of Sanchez, and owner Woody Johnson did the same a day later. And on Friday, it was Ryan's turn.

“I don’t know how many that don’t feel confident in Mark Sanchez,” he said according to the Newark Star-Ledger. “I’ll tell you this, if it’s not all of them, it’s the majority of our football team has a great deal confidence in Mark Sanchez. And when he walks through that door, his head is going to be held high, there’s no question about it. That’s what I know.”

Well, we know it's not "all of them" because of Santonio Holmes' Week 17 temper tantrum. But we take your point, Rex.

The embattled head coach also addressed the unsourced nature of the comments.

"An anonymous source, or whatever it is, doesn’t speak on behalf of the entire football team; doesn’t put his name to a quote and things like that. Believe me, there's a lot of people that I know specifically -- a ton of our players, and everybody in this organization, in my opinion, that has a great deal of belief and admiration for Mark Sanchez."

Whether Ryan actually believes what he's saying shouldn't obscure the bigger message: if you're willing to publicly blast your teammate but aren't willing to take responsibility for it, you're a coward.

During the team's end-of-year press conference last week, general manager Mike Tannenbaum admitted that Sanchez needs to play better. He echoed those sentiments Friday, though expressed them more diplomatically.

"He needs to be more consistent, and he'd be the first one to tell you that," Tannenbaum said. "With that being said, he's done a lot of good things over three years, and we're going to learn from where he can be better, and we’ll move forward. Having Coach Sparano here, we’re excited about those two guys working together."

And lest you fear that Sparano may be in over his head since he's never previously been a coordinator ... well, fear not. 

"I called plays in Dallas during that period of time, working with Coach Parcells," he said according to Rapid Reporter Lisa Zimmerman.

There's more:"We’’ll be explosive. We’ll be able to get it down the field," Sparano said, presumably not having watched the Jets-Dolphins regular-season finale.  

Sparano's optimism aside, here's the reality: Sanchez is entering his fourth NFL season. If he doesn't show marked improvement in 2012, he and Ryan both could be looking for new gigs 12 months from now.

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Since: Jan 2, 2012
Posted on: January 13, 2012 6:48 pm

Rex Ryan takes his turn defending Mark Sanchez

Rex has to say positive things about Sanchez.  If he didn't, he would look like a jackass for playing him all season (although Brunell under center would have been uglier).  We read earlier in the season about Sanchez pouting and/or being mad when Rex threatened some of his first team reps at practice.  Clearly the Jets are not satisfied with Sanchez, but for better or worse, they are married to him RIGHT NOW(at least until free agency begins or players get released... Peyton Manning???).  Rex should shut his fat trap about guaranteed super bowl wins, etc... With Sanchez leading the parade, Rex will win the toilet bowl, and he, the GM and some un-named players now know it.  I predict Rex says zero next year until the Jets hang a few W's on the board.    

Since: Jan 6, 2012
Posted on: January 13, 2012 5:31 pm

Rex Ryan takes his turn defending Mark Sanchez

How can you possibly put any credibility in anything Ryan says anymore. All he does is talk talk talk out of every side of fat fanny. I think he just talks because it's the only thing he does well. Unfortunately, what come out is the same thing that come out of each side of his fat fanny.

Since: Sep 7, 2009
Posted on: January 13, 2012 5:22 pm

Rex Ryan takes his turn defending Mark Sanchez

The reason these guys made it anonymous is because of fear of being attack.  But having said that, you look to yourself first before blaming your teammate and if you felt you played well enough, then you pick up your teammate.  You have his back.  Unless that dude breaks the law ala Sam Hurd, Michael Vick, you stand by the guy.  Just look what happened to Tiki when he decided to call out Eli.  There is one thing to say we need to play better, there is another thing to attack his character.  

Rex, get your house in order.  You have to tell your players to shut up. 

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