Rex Ryan On On Sanchez And Tebow

Rex Ryan spoke to the media today and gave his thoughts on Mark Sanchez and Tim Tebow.

On what he has seen from Sanchez during the first week of OTAs…
Really, since he’s come back, he’s probably the healthiest he’s been.  The first year he had no clue, he was just out there.  But he’s healthy.  He’s stronger than he’s ever been.  He’s in great shape.  Bill Hughan and company out there, and Paul Ricci and Justus (Galac), they do a great job in there.  This kid’s in great shape, as are most of our guys. But I just think he’s stronger.  Obviously, he’s going into his fourth year.  He’s seen a lot of different things, but that arm looks stronger to me.  He’s throwing the ball and really zipping it, throwing with touch and things.  I really like the way he’s throwing the football.

On what the wake-up call for Sanchez was…
I think the biggest wake-up call we had as a football team was the fact that we never made the playoffs.  That was a huge wake-up call for us.  You can’t just assume you’re going to make it.  That starts with me.  I knew there had to be a lot of work to be done to make it.  And a lot of really good teams every year don’t make the playoffs.  That is the first for us since I’ve been here.  I think you realize how much you miss it.  You want to be involved in that.  The guys don’t play this game to collect a check.  This organization, our guys, play because they want to be special, and we want to be in those types of games.  Obviously, the ultimate is what the Giants accomplished.  That’s what we want to accomplish.  But not being in the playoffs I think stung everybody and motivated us, drives us, and Sanchez, I think that is the greatest motivator there is.  Hunger for being in the postseason is I think the biggest driving force that we have.

On if acquiring Tim Tebow also motivated Sanchez…
I’m not sure, you’d have to ask Mark.  When you look at it, we’re excited that Tim Tebow is here.  Those two guys are good teammates.  They’re good for each other and good for our football team in general.  They’re both very competitive guys.  That’s great.  At the end of the day, we want 53 great competitors and good teammates.  I think we’ll have that this year.

On if Tebow playing on special teams makes him nervous because of the potential for injury…
You guys have seen him.  You know what I mean?  That’s a big man.  I remember my dad always saying it’s hard to kick somebody’s butt, I don’t know if he used that exact word. (laughter) But, it’s hard to kick somebody’s butt when he’s kicking your butt.  So they’re going to line up and come after Tebow and all that.  I can tell you one guy that’s not afraid of it, and that’s Tim Tebow.  I’m not afraid of it either.  I just think what he can help us with being that personal protector of the punt team is, are you sure you really want to rush that punt?  If its fourth-and-six, seven or less, are you sure you really want to rush it, because we may fake it.  Westy (Mike Westhoff) is crazy enough to fake it.  I mean, Westy will fake it.  Let’s face it, Weatherford faked the punt on fourth-and-27 or whatever it was that time. (laughing) So we’ll do it again.  But I think you want a guy, we had Brad Smith.  Did you really want to rush when Brad Smith was your personal protector?  A guy that can throw it?  Tim gives you that inside running presence, an outside running presence, he can throw it and oh, by the way, he’ll run.  He’s a football player.  We’ve said it for a long time.  This guy’s an excellent football player and a great competitor.  I have a feeling he’ll run down and tackle somebody.

On how Tebow has looked as a quarterback…
I think we’ve had some ups and downs.  He’s probably had a couple of picks today, I think.  He was better the first day.  I know the way training camp will be, you’ll have the exact numbers and what it was and all that, and that’s fine.  But I think he’s done well. I think for everybody, it’s a new offense.  You’re trying to learn some basic things, not do anything specifically tailor-made for this quarterback or that quarterback or this guy, running routes with guys.  We’re just putting in our base offense and that’s what we’re doing right now.  I think he’s got a good grasp of it.  I think all the quarterbacks do.  I like where our quarterbacks are right now.

On when they will install some of the Tebow packages…
That won’t be until later.  You’re talking about wildcat stuff in particular, that will come in later.  Right now, it’s installing some of our base offenses.  As we know with Tony, the wildcat was part of the offense.  It’s just going to go in later.

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