Mark Sanchez Speaks

Mark Sanchez Transcript – 1/2/12

On how he feels about the 2011 season and where the team is right now…
I think we fell short of our expectations. And any time that happens you’re a little disappointed and upset. You’re supposed to be if you care about it and you want to win. It’s not fun losing. It’s not fun going 8-8 and I feel like we have better talent and we definitely underachieved. So, that’s where we’ll be moving forward and we’ll learn a lot from this experience.

On why the team underachieved…
I think we weren’t as consistent as we wanted to be on offense and that ended up hurting us down the stretch.

On not reaching the playoffs for the first time in his career…
Any time you don’t win that last game, if you’re not winning the Super Bowl, obviously you don’t accomplish your goal. But this is a lot different because we didn’t really set ourselves up and give ourselves a chance to accomplish that goal in the postseason. It’s a different feeling, I think. It’s a tough experience, but also a good experience to learn from and hopefully grow from and just try and improve, and that’s really the goal this offseason, is to improve and come back the best player I can possibly be after these few months off.

On how chemistry impacted the team…
I think those are conversations that are kind of in-house things. It’s not really my belief to talk about stuff like that. You address those things as teammates and you talk about those things privately, so I’m not going to get into that.

On whether he has spoken to any of his teammates privately about the team’s chemistry…
We will and we’ll have conversations about stuff like that. Today, obviously, is the day you do your exit physical, you go through your team meeting, meet with your position coach and obviously emotions and things like that are still fresh from the game and from the season. So, now is not the right time.

On what Rex Ryan’s message was this morning…
That was a team meeting. So, like I said, it’s my philosophy to just keep that in house. That was a team meeting.

On where he goes from here…
You take a little time and get away from it. I’m sure I’ll just relax and take some time off, think about a lot of stuff. You’ve got to physically and mentally and emotionally remove yourself from the game for a little bit, and then you start the re-entry process a few weeks or months down the road and get back at it. Write down a lot of things you’re feeling, (I’ll) probably do that, so hopefully we’re not feeling this way next year.

On if he is where he wants to be as a quarterback after his third season…
That’s a good question. I know I’m steadily improving. I’m not a stat guy, but to have the wins that we’ve had together as an organization, 30-whatever in our first couple of years together, that’s a great accomplishment, but it’s also something as a competitor I just don’t hang my hat on that. I think I’ve steadily improved numbers-wise, but I still feel like I have a long way to go. I have plenty of things to work on, plenty of areas where I can be better and that’s what the offseason is about. So, it’s a good chance to get away from the game for a little bit and come back the best player I can possibly be and the best quarterback for this team.

On how he has dealt with the criticism…
It’s understood. When things aren’t going right, when you’re 8-8, that’s never where you want to end up and that’s not your goal. If you told everybody that was your goal at the beginning of the season, fine, but that’s not where we want to be and we know that, but that’s a part of the position. You take everything in stride, take the praise and the criticism in stride, keep perspective, just get away and come back focused and be the best I can be.

On whether he likes to get away or re-live things over in his mind…
Sure. I mean, you think about stuff. There will be games going on that we’d wish we were playing in and that’s what we earned this year. We didn’t earn the right to play in the playoffs. The last two years we did. So, I’ll be able to get away from it a little bit and get some perspective. I’m excited to see my family, see a lot of my friends from home and coaches, things like that. Just to get back into the real world for a little bit, it’ll be different, but it’ll be nice for a few weeks or something and then start thinking about how I’m going to be better.

On whether he still feels like the luckiest guy in the world…
Absolutely. I mean, even on days like this, it’s hard, but I’m in a really good spot. I’m lucky to have the guys that we have in this locker room, on this coaching staff and I’ll play for those guys any day. So, I’m thrilled to be a Jet. I wear that Jet logo with pride. It means a lot to me. I’m excited about where this organization can go. There’s teams that would love to be 8-8, believe it or not. That just goes to show you how good we can be and how good we should be that we’re disappointed we didn’t make the playoffs. We know we can. That’ll be our goal next year and we’ll come back better.

On the belief that he can be a great quarterback in this league, but needs a change at offensive coordinator…
There’s always going to be critics that, when you’re 8-8, a lot of people have the right answer, a lot of people know what should change and a lot of those things are out of my control, but speaking from my experience with Schotty (Brian Schottenheimer), he’s been great. He’s been great to me. We’ve had 30-plus wins together, playoff road wins together, great gameplans, some of the best red zone production we’ve had here in a while this season. So, there’s a lot of positive things to dwell on. That’s the stuff I’ll focus on, but when it comes to personnel issues, whether it’s players or coaches, that’s in-house stuff and it’s really out of my control. If they ask me to weigh in on it, obviously I’ll give my opinion, but not until that’s asked of me. I don’t think that’s right.

On how healthy he has been the last few weeks…
It’s just been sore and it’s part of playing.  If it’s Week 16 and you’re not a little sore or banged up, then you’re probably not playing hard.

On if his neck and shoulder injuries are anything more than soreness…
No, I don’t think so.  I feel good.  If we had to play today, I’m ready to play.  We’ll just move on.  I think you get a chance to rest and sometimes that’s the best medicine, whether it’s massages, electric stim, ice and all that stuff is great, but at the same time, at some point you’re going to need some rest.  That’ll be the best thing.

On whether he will have any tests on his shoulder or if he will need any kind of surgery…
Yeah, I don’t know.  I really don’t.  We’ll just take things in stride, get some rest and see what happens.

On what he expected from himself this season…
Obviously, I expect to be in the playoffs.  That’s all I’ve known here.  It was funny, I was talking to (Nick) Mangold last night.  He said, “Man, this is your first time not even being in the playoffs,” and I said, ‘I know.  I haven’t finished a season on January 1st since college.’  I know it’s just a couple of years ago, but to me, it seems like a lifetime ago.  It’s a weird feeling.  I have a lot of expectations this next year.  I think it’s just a good chance to get away and relax.

On if he checked the ball down too much this season…
I think from an offensive perspective, for those big plays to happen down the field, for deep balls to happen, we need to be more consistent.  You don’t get opportunities to throw the balls down the field.  You don’t get opportunities to take shots when you’re first-and-15, first-and-25, when you throw an interception.  You don’t even get yourself a chance to do that.  With our inconsistencies this year, speaking from my point of view and the quarterback position, we didn’t give ourselves a chance to do that.

On if he sees other offenses and wonders why the Jets offense does not function like that…
It’s just (that) we’re not consistent.  Those guys aren’t hurting themselves with penalties.  They’re not turning the ball over.  They’re doing the right things and they’re on their landmarks at the right time, whether it’s receivers, running backs or offensive linemen.  We all have jobs to do on each and every play.  When 11 guys do it right, that’s when you get those drives that move down the field, those 13-play drives and stuff.  When you don’t, you’re hurting yourself with turnovers or penalties.  That’s kind of the world we lived in this season.

On if he feels that the chemistry of the team wasn’t as good this season as in the past…
I think that’s stuff that you take time to think about and look back.  I think it’s too soon to get into that.  I think a lot of that stuff is in-house.

On if he thinks that Santonio Holmes needs to apologize…
Like I said about coaches and players, that kind of stuff, that’s in-house stuff.  It’s personnel stuff.  I’ll have those conversations privately with different members of the organization, so that’s not public information, in my opinion.

On if Holmes is someone he wants as his teammate…
I think all the guys in here give us a chance to win and I want guys that are winners.  He’s clearly been a winner, but like I said, when it comes to personnel issues, players and coaches, that is not in my hands.  It’s my job to control everything I can and that’s to come back a better player, a better quarterback, a better leader and that’s where my focus is.

On why he doesn’t feel the need, as a captain, to criticize Holmes the way that LaDainian Tomlinson did…
I think it’s an in-house issue.  Opinions like that, I don’t think, are ready for a public forum.  I think (those) are things that we handle in this locker room and they should be private, in my opinion.

On how much of a challenge it will be for Coach Ryan to build the chemistry of this team back up…
We all have our goals and things we’re going to focus on this offseason.  I can’t speak for coach and what his job should be, and this and that.  He knows exactly what’s right for the team and every decision he makes is in the team’s best interest.  Like I said, I have to go with everything I can control and that’s becoming a better quarterback, making better decisions, cutting down interceptions, getting more completions and that’s where my focus is.

On what he will do in the offseason to improve his play…
I think the first thing you have to do is get away for a little bit.  Then, when you come back, it’s going to be a matter of film study, repetition, working with the coaches and talking through a lot of the situations we got ourselves into this year, whether it was clock management, using our timeouts the right way and you have to go through all those games, put yourself back in those situations and really learn from them, write them down, rep them out on the field, walk through them (and) talk about them.  Then, when those situations come up again, you’ve been there.  You’ve done it.  Naturally, you’re going to talk about other situations that fall in line with those that we experienced this year.  You move and you grow from it.  That’s where it’s going to come.  It’s going to be that film study, really with the guys that are here and the coaches that are here, that’s going to be important for us to do on our own and as a group.

On if he will work with his receivers more in the offseason to try and make sure they are on the same page…
Yes, I think that’s one of the things we’ll look at and decide what’s best whether we’re out in California working out or wherever these guys want to meet up.  Something for the guys that are going to stay, you see a lot of these great offenses around the league, they’ve been together for a few years and they really work in the offseason.  That’s going to be important for all of us to be on the same page, to understand coverages, how routes adjust to different coverages and stuff that builds the chemistry right there.  That stuff is going to be important and we’ll figure out those plans soon.

On if team chemistry is a tougher thing to fix in an offseason…
I think that, a lot of that, is a team issue.  When guys get away for a while and look back at everything we’ve experienced this year and how we want to get better, we’ll focus on a lot of the positive things, we’ll correct the negative things and we’ll move on.  We just have to all improve individually these next few months or whatever it is and, as soon as we come back, we have to be ready to improve as a team.  Whether it’s a chemistry issue or execution issue, all those things get solved in these next few months and (we’ll) come back and improve.

On if he is disappointed in other players not keeping things in the locker room…
No, everybody is entitled to say what they think is right and that’s just their opinion, so that’s fine.  I don’t think there is anything wrong with it, it’s just not the way I’d do it, that’s all.

Comments on this entry are closed.