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NY Jets Training Camp

Rex Ryan OTA Press Conference

Courtesy NY Jets PR Department – New York Jets fans can discuss this on the Jets Nation message board.

Transcript of Jets head coach Rex Ryan’s news conference following Thursday’s midday OTA practice:
I’ve got nothing to say like always [smiling]. If you didn’t notice our field goal kicking, we had the guys kick with the other foot today. That’s why they were missing. That was ugly, a little bit concerning. I told those guys, “I’m not the sharpest guy, but if the first nine kicks all went right in the upright, I think you might want to adjust a little bit. I might have to miss left before I miss another one right,” so I tried to explain that to them. I think Nick [Folk] made a few, but the other kid [Clint Stitser] never made any. I don’t think he wants to do that.

On why he had the kickers kick with their “other foot”…
I was just kidding [laughing]. That’s what it seemed like. I thought they were pulling a gag on me. It wasn’t. I think Nick is going to be fine. The other kid has got to make a couple, or we’ll find another.

On if the kickers missing kicks today concerns him…
Absolutely, yes it does. Even now, I know it’s a long a time before we play a game, but yes it concerns you. When it comes down to it, you’ve got to make those kicks. That’s all you do. You might not be on the top of your game right now. I remember Matt Stover for 100 years at Baltimore, this time of year I don’t think Matt could make a kick. When that season rolled around, I don’t think he missed. He was one of those automatic guys. It’s all in the timing and the new holders, but I think we’d all feel a lot better if they decided to make them.

On not re-signing Jay Feely…
It is a business deal. Obviously, I like Jay. There’s no question. I’ve got great confidence in Jay. I’ve got confidence in Nick as well. There are several factors that go into making decisions. If Jay is here, then Jason Taylor is not there. There are a lot of things. There is that part of it. There is a financial part of it. There are all kinds of things that you have to weigh, but certainly I thought Jay Feely was an outstanding kicker.

On if it was a risk signing Nick Folk after he struggled last season…
No, he absolutely is. Two years ago he’s a Pro Bowl kicker and last year, he struggled. It is a bit of a risk, but I think the benefits we got — Jason Taylor is going to be a huge plus for us as far as pass rushing and rotating in with Calvin [Pace] and BT [Bryan Thomas]. What those guys can do out there on the sub team together and when we get ahead in the fourth quarter, it’s checkmate. That’s what it needs to be. When you’ve got that kind of pass rusher and the kind of coverage we have in the back end, we can’t surrender leads like we did last year. That was a big decision. Again, Nick is a guy, I think he made two 50-something yard field goals to win a game against Buffalo. He definitely has the ability. It’s just go out there and get it done. I think we’d all feel better if he was 100 percent on those practice kicks.

On what he expects from Jason Taylor during OTAs…
Not much. He had that shoulder. It’s funny, yesterday we had him out there and we’re going through some individual drills, he comes off and lights somebody up. I just got a little excited. I want to slow him down, proceed with caution and teach him the defense first. He’s itching to go, though. He’ll be ready for training camp, without question.

On how close Mark Sanchez is to participating in the drills…
I don’t feel that comfortable right now. I don’t want to risk that right now because you’ve got bodies flying around. I think we just need to stay the course and in due time he’ll be out there. We all know he’s going to be ready to roll. It’s just we don’t need to have any setbacks with him for sure.

On how much the competition between the first-team offense and defense will make the team better…
That’s what it’s all about. I was talking with Jerricho [Cotchery] today about it. He just had a smile on his face like “Oh, my gosh.” There is so much talent on the field and when you look at those guys, you line them up across there you’re like “Wow!” This is going to get Mike Pettine and his defensive staff a lot of flexibility in making calls. Then on offense, they’re not going to get better than what they’re facing. There’s no question about that. That’s really on both sides. I think there’s a lot of good receiving corps in this league, but when you put Jerricho out there with Santonio [Holmes], Braylon Edwards, Dustin Keller and LaDainian [Tomlinson]; I don’t know if there is a better group than that.

On Mark Sanchez attending a state dinner at the White House last night…
Well, they wanted me to go there. Beyoncé was there [laughing]. I had to let her know that I was married. She calls me a bunch [laughter].

On if Sanchez will be able to participate during minicamp…
Yes, I would think we can put him out there then, but these next OTAs I just assume we’ll ride it out like we’ve been doing. If we get him out there expect run, just hand the ball off kid. He is. You guys see him out there. He’s moving along great. I don’t think it’s going to be long.

On if he thinks the New Meadowlands Stadium will host the Super Bowl in 2014…
I would think they would. You’ve got the best city in the world. Why wouldn’t you want to host the Super Bowl there? Some pretty historic games, the Ice Bowl. I’m not saying the weather will be like that, but everybody remembers it, so I think that’s a great thing. What do you base it on? We’ve got the best city in the world. I think that’s indisputable. We’ve got arguably one of the top stadiums in the league, a brand new stadium. It helps two teams. I don’t see how it’s not played here. The weather, if your team is not built to play in those conditions, that’s too bad [laughter]. I just assume play all those games up north.

On if he would welcome playing a Super Bowl up north…
Absolutely. I would be really disappointed to get Peyton [Manning] in that situation. It just so happens we’ve had some indoor games and there are some teams that play in a dome and there are outdoor teams, so it’s just the way it is. This game should be played here and obviously it would be a great Super Bowl.

On how the labor situation might affect him as a coach and if he thinks some suspension of games will happen in 2011…
I just do what they tell me. Everybody has an opinion. I think we’ll play football. That’s what I think.

On why Joe McKnight was not practicing today…
We released him today [laughter]. No, that was a joke. He had the Rookie NFL Premiere, so he was excused.

On if he McKnight was here earlier this week…
Yes, he was here. He and “No-Neck,” I mean John Conner, were here watching tape together.

On Nick Mangold being limited today…
He’s holding out [laughter]. No, he’s got a quad. As he put it, he was all over Shonn Greene because he ran into him and ran into his quad. As Nick put it, “I can handle it if I did something to myself, but Shonn never had to run into me.” Maybe if he got a little bit more movement, he wouldn’t have. But he’s going to be just fine.

On if McKnight is holding up better during the OTAs than he did at the rookie minicamp…
Oh, yes. He hasn’t thrown up [laughter]. He’s in much better shape.

On if he’s worried that many of his players are in the last year of their contracts and if that will hurt the team…
No. Generally if you win, that’s good for everybody. I think that’s the No. 1 thing. I think if you ask any of those guys, that would be their No. 1 deal, to go out and win. If you win a Super Bowl, that’s good for everybody. Even guys with individual goals and assistant coaches wanting to be head coaches, if you win that’s the best thing that can happen to you.

As far as the contracts, sometimes it is good that guys are in their last year of their deal. Especially in baseball, you see it all the time because the guy is motivated and is having an unbelievable year. In football, it’s such a team game. I know baseball is a team game, but really it’s about the numbers. It’s about different things like that. Here, it’s about wins and losses. I think this is a good situation for us to be in. We’ve got a lot of great players and it is going to be tough. The next offseason is going to be really tough for Mike Tannenbaum trying to get all these things done.

On how hard it is to play safety in his defense…
I think this is a great defense to play if you’re a safety. Not just the physical part of the game because you get to do everything: man coverage, zone coverage, play high, play low, support the run, blitz. You get to do everything in this system. You can showcase your physical abilities, but also mentally. I think it challenges it you mentally. You’ve got to communicate well. You’ve got to communicate with your other safety and the corner to your side. That’s what the great ones do. With the way we play defense, you’ve got a lot of opportunities to make plays.

On being able to try some new things on defense with Darrelle Revis and Antonio Cromartie…
Yes, I think so. We’ve tried a lot of different things through the years, but we could become even more aggressive, I think. You can let it fly. Come hit the quarterback, go more zero pressures, more cover ones, and fire zones, whatever you want to do. We can run with a lot of guys. We’re better equipped to play the Indianapolis Colts today than we were when we ended the season.

On if Cromartie will return kick offs…
I think if the game is on the line, you may see him. [Mike] Westhoff thinks he’s going to get him the whole time. I’m like, “Yeah Mike, as far as you know, you can have him back there” [laughter]. He looks pretty good doesn’t he? His stride is only about five yards long, so I was telling [Matthew] Mulligan that when they run, they remind me of each other [laughter]. It’s crazy, isn’t it? I’ve never seen a stride like that. It’s amazing. Secretariat maybe stretched like that. He gets out there. It wasn’t a bad pickup, I don’t think.

On what he saw from rookie OL Vladimir Ducasse today…
I think you should ask Jim Leonhard that question since that first play Jimmy came in there and — whoops, somebody pick Jim up over there. I don’t know how that guy can surprise you, but he surprised Jimmy and launched him about 20 yards. He’s just a big, massive kid. It’s great to watch him. He came to an ideal situation. He’s going to be sandwiched in between Nick Mangold and D’Brickashaw Ferguson. And oh, by the way, you’ve got the best coach in the league, too, with Bill Callahan sitting right there. I have a funny feeling that he’s going to be a terrific player for us, I really do.

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This Article Was Written By Phil Sullivan

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I started JetNation in 2005 and have been a New York Jets season ticket holder since graduating from high school. My dream is to see the New York Jets win the Super Bowl. Until then, I will be right here on JetNation writing, dreaming and talking NY Jets football.