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Mark Sanchez Transcript

Courtesy of the NY Jets PR Department

On his health now compared to a couple of weeks ago…

A lot better. Every day it’s feeling better and that’s been key. After long days of work and lower-body lifting days, the big thing is coming back the next day not swollen, achy or hurting. It’s been great. The training staff is happy and we’re looking forward to being ready for minicamp.

On his knee…

It feels really good. The scary stuff is when the scar tissue pops, but it just feels good. It alleviates all the pain. It’s natural. That was probably the scariest thing and part of it is psychological rehab, too. You want to feel right about it in your head first and that’s why we do all the exercises in the training room. I feel good. My feet are under me and I’m getting some good spin on the ball, really using my legs. I feel good about it.

On how often the scar tissue tears…

That was more a couple weeks ago really, but it’s pretty much done. When you first start moving around, getting up in the morning is hard just remembering that you hurt your leg, but now I’m popping out of bed ready to go. I feel good.

On if he will be able to fully participate during minicamp…

If things keep going the way they are, if they progress the way they are now, I’m confident I’ll be ready to go. It’s ultimately going to be up to the training staff and Rex. I feel good about it. I’m confident.

On how much he wants to be on the field participating…

It’s hard right now. It’s frustrating, doing the drills on the side, going through 7-on-7s and then having to watch special categories, having to watch team, having to watch them move the ball, stuff that I love doing and the reps that I like getting and the reps that I need. So as soon as I get the opportunity, I’m chomping at the bit now to do it. As soon as they come, I need to make the most of the ones I get, and hopefully all of them in minicamp and then watch that film and get ready for camp.

On knowing the offense…

It just feels more natural and I’m not scrambling when I get the playcall like last year. I’d have to say it a couple times in my head before I’d get to the huddle and now I’m visualizing it. I see the concept. It’s to the point where Schotty [Brian Schottenheimer] is barely starting to get the playcall out of his mouth and I’m starting to walk away and he’s grabbing me to make sure I get the whole call, but I feel good about it. That’s the way I want it to be. I want him to be grabbing me, “Hey, don’t forget this and give him this tag.”

When we get up to the line and we’re making checks, I just feel more confident with the audible mechanics, route depth and now getting into fine details of where the receivers’ splits are supposed to be, how deep is Cover-2 versus Cover-3 — little nuances of our offense that are coming even more and more natural. I feel great about it. That’s the point. As the quarterback, you want to master it and make that offense your own. That’s what I’m in the process of doing.

On if he sneaked in on an 11-on-11 play last week…

Yes, just to see how it felt. It felt good though. My knee felt good.

On Rex Ryan’s reaction when he sneaked in on that play…

Rex just said, “Make sure you do it.” He said, “Next time you try something like that, make sure Mr. Johnson is not out there because he was terrified” [laughing]. He said, “Heads will go rolling. Be careful.” That’s just keeping the pressure on the training staff, having a little fun with it. It was an easy play. It was nothing special.

On if he is still free of swelling…

Absolutely. I’m feeling really good.

On if he’s surprised he’s not swelling…

No. Talking to the doctors yesterday, they said, “You’re coming along a lot faster than a lot of guys do, especially with this injury. We want to keep up the progression. As long as you’re not swelling, as long as you’re feeling right, then you’re healing.” They tell me, “You know your body best so feel free to tell us if it hurts, if you need to take a day off, if you need to slow down or if you feel good and want to push it.” That’s the kind of communication we have, so we have a good understanding back and forth. The swelling has been down, so we’ve been pushing.

On his conversation with quarterbacks coach Matt Cavanaugh during practice…

I was trying to think about it. He didn’t talk to me about the flight of the ball. I’m thinking it was just going through progressions and getting your feet sped up with the speed of your arm to follow. When you go from one progression to another, you want your feet going there first and then your arm to follow. That was the mechanical thing he was getting at.

But Coach Cavanaugh and they are pretty pleased with my mechanics. Little stuff here and there, first step under center, really opening up to the left when you are making throws deep and wide to the left, but other than that, it’s just talking through progressions and coverages and different looks on defense. That’s probably what we were getting at, but not the ball, really.

On if his legs locked up at all during practice…

No, I felt better than I did opening up throwing to my left. That’s something that I thought would be more difficult, but it’s coming from that reactive rehab that we’re doing, really emphasizing pivoting off my right foot, simulating a throwing motion but in the training room and using weights, dumbbells, weight vests and resistance cords to simulate what it’s like putting all my weight on my foot and bringing my right foot off the ground. It feels really good, though.

On if he weighs less than last year…

I played at probably 225-, 228. I’m probably 230. You couldn’t tell? [laughing] You see this shirt?

On Vladimir Ducasse…

He doesn’t get rattled. That’s good. He’s not a moper. He doesn’t show his emotions. The dude is stone cold. That’s good. You want a guy like that. When you make mistakes like a rookie left guard should, like a quarterback does, that’s what you want. You want to be nails. This guy is already showing flashes of that. It’s little things here and there that he’s trying to clean up.

The best part is I’m coming along with protections, trying to know when he’s supposed to gap, when he’s supposed to fan, things like that. Now I can talk to him about it and we’re on that same level. I’m trying to help him. That’s where I want to be, to be able to talk to him. He’s doing a great job, [Matt] Slauson, too. Both of them are competing their tail off for that spot so it’s a good situation for both of them. The team will benefit from whoever does well.

On getting the receivers together this summer to throw in California…

Part of it is just that it felt natural to me. I did it in school. It was obviously a lot easier when we were an hour away from my house. We’re figuring out a way to get everybody out there, just work on some routes and stuff that I wanted to do whether I was healthy or hurt during these OTAs. I think not being in these OTAs, it’s even more important to get those extra reps to make up for a little lost time we had in OTAs and make sure we’re sharp going into camp.

We’re giving them plenty of time to get on their vacations and then make that kind of part of their vacation. We’ll make it fun for them, too. I don’t want to kill these guys. We’ll have fun with it. They’ll bring a wife or fiancée, maybe, and then hopefully we’ll make it an annual thing.

On the controversy surrounding Southern Cal…

I’ve heard some rumblings and I know everything comes out tomorrow, I guess, is the big day. It’s one of those things where I was a redshirt freshman when a lot of that stuff was allegedly going on so I don’t have much to say about it. We’ll see when the report comes out, but I’m hopeful that things will be all right.

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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.