Rex Ryan’s Wednesday News Conference


Here is a transcript of head coach Rex Ryan’s press conference from NJ, courtesy of the team:

Injuries. Who is the first guy on the list? Somebody take a guess. Logan Payne. Wrist. Out. Guys who did not participate” Cro [Antonio Cromartie] with a groin injury. Nick Mangold, ankle. Ropati [Pitoitua], knee. Isaiah Trufant, hamstring. LaDainian [Tomlinson] was not injury-related, just kind of backing him off a little bit. Guys that were limited: Joe McKnight with a little bit of a knee. All these players were full: Marquice Cole, hamstring, Marcus Dixon, knee, Tanner Purdum, low back, Donald Strickland, concussion, and Muhammad Wilkerson, shoulder. I don’t know what to say, so go ahead and fire away.

On if Tomlinson received a “senior citizen’s day off”…

Oh, my goodness [laughter]. It’ll never be reported that you said it, so as soon as I say, “Well, no, yeah, absolutely,” “Ryan claims he’s getting old.” [laughter] It’s just kind of what we did last year a little bit. You know how that is.

On if Mangold or Cromartie faced setbacks in their injury recovery…

No, I think limited during the week. I think the fact that we just played Monday, we’ll see how it progresses. But I think they’ll probably be limited up until that point, the game. But I expect them both to play.

On releasing Martin Tevaseu…

He did play pretty well. You’re always looking at your roster and looking at different things, but Martin did play well for us.

On if they will re-sign Tevaseu…

Sure, we like MTV, so that’s a possibility. He has to clear waivers, maybe practice squad and all that stuff as well.

On if he is pleased with where Mark Sanchez is in his development…

I think he is a young, developing quarterback. I don’t think we’ll say he’s completely developed until maybe six years. That’s generally the thing. Obviously there are guys that have done it before that, there’s guys that have never done it, there are guys that take even more time. I don’t know how long Aaron Rodgers was on the bench, but our guy is playing and I think he’s getting better and better.

We know, for whatever reason, we need to find a way to get rid of that first quarter and try to figure out how to tell him, “Hey, it’s the fourth quarter and we’re trailing.” Whatever, because he always plays better that way it seems. I’m pleased with Mark obviously, and I think overall as a team, I say just get better each day, stack bricks through our preparation, our practice, and I think we’ll be fine.

On if last week has made him question his open philosophy…

We’ll never change that as long as I’m here.

On how much the team will use the game plan against the Chargers from the 2009 playoffs…

I think you always look, especially when you’re playing against the same coach and same players. Obviously there’s going to be changes there. But in particular the same coaching staff, things like that, you always go back and look at those tapes.

On how different the Chargers offense will be if they don’t have Antonio Gates…

Well, Gates is certainly a huge target, especially in the red zone. He’s one of these rare guys, he has the skill set of a top notch receiver. He’s not a hired killer as a blocker, but he’s decent. Either way, he presents a lot of problems to do. We’ll look at it, they have some other good targets as well at tight end.

On if this Chargers game is a whole different ballgame from the Dolphins game…

Every week is different, every week is a different challenge. Their record is 4-1. They beat Miami. I think Miami has a chance, they have some good players but I think each week is definitely a different challenge to you.

On the difference between the 2010 and 2011 Jets at this point…

Well, we had more victories, I think that’s the biggest thing. So if you’re looking at what feels a little different, we’re 3-3 instead of whatever we were at this time last year.

On if he has noticed any differences between this year’s team and last year’s…

I don’t think we’ve stopped the perimeter runs like we normally would. I think inside runs, when you look at it statistically, it’s like “Well, guys are running the ball down our throat.” Really? OK. Well, look at your third-and-1′s, look at those things where people have to have the runs in between the tackles. I think you’ll see a different stat, where you’ll see where we’re leading the league in defense. Our perimeter runs, we have to be much better on the perimeter at stopping the run. And then offensively, getting back to running the football more successfully. I think those are the biggest things, those two areas are probably the biggest of needing improvement.

On if he notices a sense of urgency in the locker room…

No doubt. There’s a huge sense of urgency here, maybe more so when you’re down, you’ve lost three games on the road. That urgency is about as high as you can be.

On if the perimeter running game has been impacted by Bryan Thomas’ absence…

Bryan is an outstanding player, there’s no question, one of the most underrated guys in the league. Smart, tough, physical. He’s good versus the run, pass, in coverage or rushing the quarterback. Really, an underrated player. Whatever it is, we’re seeing some different types of formations and other things, but we have to do a better job of stopping the perimeter. I’m sure San Diego, when they look at us, they’re going to talk about attacking us on the perimeter.

On if the Chargers run to the outside a lot…

Yes, absolutely. They give you a bunch of different things. What we call “gap plays”, they can bring the ball inside or outside. Power running and also what we call “Boss”, where they try to get the ball on the outside as well.

On the attitude coming off a victory against Miami and the effort they’ll give Sunday…

We’re definitely going to give a great effort, there’s no question about it. It’s a home game in front of our fans. Effort, that’s expected. So we’re definitely going to give that. I don’t like the fact that we disrespect Miami like that’s just a throw-in. I think we beat Miami, score-wise, more than any other team beat them. Miami is not a bad football team. Their record is bad right now, but I don’t like to disrespect any opponent.

On him expecting Burress to catch 10 passes…

I’m saying that he could catch 10. I think part of it is going to be how teams are playing us. When our running game improves, I can see us getting more of the eight-man spacing, if you will, single-high-coverage-type things than we’re facing. It might not be this week. He might not catch 10 balls this week. They’re a big zone team. Almost 80 percent of the time they’re in zone defense. There are ways of getting him the football. I believe we will get Plaxico the football more. But a lot of times your coverage dictates who gets the ball thrown to them.

On if it is harder to integrate Burress into the offense because he’s more of an outside receiver…

No, because Plaxico is a guy who can run a lot of in-breaking routes as well. He’s not just an outside the numbers receiver. A lot of his work is, he can catch the ball inside. I just think a lot of it is, we all want him to catch a bunch of passes and all that stuff, but [sometimes] the ball shouldn’t be thrown. If the coverage is a certain way, the ball should be thrown somewhere else.

On if Burress is still getting double coverage…

Absolutely. He absolutely is. And their safety is down to him a bunch. Even when they show two high safeties, sometimes it’s not that the safeties are going deep, sometimes the safeties are under-cutting, where they’re coming into a “3” look but they’re rolling a safety down to him. So there are a lot of times when he’s getting doubled, but it might not be that obvious. But absolutely, and sometimes it’s going to dictate where the ball gets thrown.

On how he compares Burress to Braylon Edwards…

Both of them are outstanding receivers. I think what immediately jumps out to you, they’re both big guys. You look at vertical-threat-type guys, red zone-type threats. So they’re similar and the fact that both of them block really well, I think, is what makes it an easy comparison.

On if Shonn Greene isn’t ready to be the bellcow running back they thought…

No, I disagree with that. I think Shonn is definitely ready. We have to give him more opportunities. I like the fact that he got 21 carries this past week. I think that’s kind of when he gets in his groove a little bit.

On if he was actually irked about the Jets being underdogs at home against the Chargers…

No, I just think that we’re a team that is going to be hard to beat at home. And if you look at the stats from last year, maybe that’s not the fact, but right now we’re undefeated at home, we feel good about that, so we’ll see. You know the way I am, I think we should be favored every time we play at home, and that’s just the way it is.

On if they would have re-signed Edwards, considering the price he signed for in San Francisco…

You know what, it’s so easy to say, “Would you do this? Would you do that?” We’re happy that Plaxico decided to come here, that he chose us. There were a lot of different opportunities for him, and he chose to play for the Jets, and we couldn’t have been more happy about that.

On if Cromartie is going to be excited to play against his former team…

And then we have a decent running back who might be jacked up to play too. I’m not sure, but you’re right. You get that, there’s no question. Anytime you play against your former team, especially when you’ve had the success that Cro had, but look at the success that LT had. Here’s a first-ballot Hall of Famer that broke the touchdown record and did all these type of things. I’m sure it’s going to be so special for him. I think we’ll probably start the game with him on offense or defense [joking]. So we’ll put him out there, because he’s going to be ready.

On what the problem is on third downs and in the first quarter on offense…

I wish I knew. We try everything. We really do, but it’s hard to put your finger on it. Is it the play at the quarterback spot? Is it this, is it that? I don’t know. I wish I did know, we’d all be able to say, “OK, this is exactly what it is.” But we’re still searching, there’s no question. We had him warm up a bunch, we had Mark not warm up, we’ve taken the ball, we haven’t taken the ball. We’re looking at different things.

Tags: Alan Schechter Antonio Cromartie Bryan Thomas Donald Strickland Joe Mcknight Ladainian Tomlinson Mark Sanchez Mo Wilkerson NIck Mangold Plaxico Burress Rex Ryan Shonn Greene