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Mark Sanchez interview transcript 11/23/10

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On Tuesday New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez addressed the media.  Here is the transcript courtesy of the Jets.

On what the comeback wins do for the team…

“I think that’s the most important thing, is that we’ve won them. These are the same games during this stretch last year that we lost. We’re proud of the way we’re finishing games. Now it’s a matter of cleaning up some of the mistakes midway and three-quarters through the game. Hopefully, we’ll win some of these things without the last-minute heroics.”

On whether Cincinnati seems like a 2-8 to him…

“Absolutely not, they’re too talented for that. They have another chance here on national TV to play well. Those two wide-outs sure do well on national TV. Their defense is active. They’re fast. (They are) fast-flow guys. They do a great job of getting pressure on the quarterback and they’ve lost a few heartbreakers. They don’t look like they’re 2-8.”

On what his confidence is like with the way he has played lately…

“It feels good, when things break down, to be able to get down on the edge and make plays. Checking the ball down to LT (LaDainian Tomlinson) has always helped. It’s been a product of all of us working on those situations, working on our two-minute drills, knowing at the end of the game we need to be our very best. It has been obvious. Guys have been sharp with their routes. I have been doing my best to give them a chance to make plays. We’ve all done a good job of that, of tightening up protection, quickening up the routes (and) me getting the ball out as fast as possible. It’s been a team effort. We’re very proud and confident going into this game.”

On playing Thanksgiving night…

“That’s huge because everybody in the country is watching. Ours is the last game, I think. Right when people are eating dinner, football’s on TV and it’s going to be us. We wouldn’t want it any other way. It’s great. We had our Thanksgiving over a week ago and we’re ready to play.”

On having confidence in his receivers…

“I can’t tell you how many times we’ve worked on the throws (and) worked on the situations with time out. We’ve put it up on the scoreboard. It’s a mock situation. Schotty (Brian Schottenheimer) is on the headset (and) we put the crowd noise in there. It’s about as real as it gets. The things we’ve done in practice, we’ve translated it to the game. It’s a product of that repetition. I’m proud of the way we finished these games. I’m proud of the way these guys have really made plays. It makes the quarterback’s job pretty easy.”

On if he had to learn how to bring a team back from behind…

“I’ve never had a comeback until this year, not once. (I) lost two in college. (I) lost them all last year, so this is the first time I’ve really done it. (I’ve been) learning on the fly. We have some good play-makers. It’s just a matter of getting to the next down, giving us a chance. We’ve done a great job of that.”

On if he has had to learn how to lead a team down-the-field late in a game…

“I know I’m the same person. I’ve, obviously, learned a lot more about the game in a year. I think just going through those situations, now I know we have a chance no matter what. That’s the only thing I was thinking. Even after the interception, half the fans left. That’s just like, ‘All right, well, the people that are here are going to get a show.’ That’s the way we felt going out there. That’s the way I know Tone (Santonio Holmes) and Braylon (Edwards) felt, Brad Smith, Patrick Turner (and) LT (Tomlinson). They’re going to make plays for you. It’s just a matter of getting the ball in their hands, keeping it away from the defense and giving us a chance, whether it’s 16 seconds, that seems to be our lucky mark the last couple weeks.”

On if he feels like he would have been less confident in the same situation last year…

“I feel the same way. I think I said it last week, about just giving us a chance to get to that next play. Like the first play of the two minute (offense), when we’re trying to come back, (I) scrambled out of the pocket. Instead of trying to force something down the field, I got it to LT (LaDainian Tomlinson) real quick. Very next play, (it’s) second down. Sure, there’s 40 seconds, no timeouts, but there’s still plenty of time. That’s a lifetime in this league, to be able to get up and clock it as fast as we can. Just give us a chance. (I) got it to LT again. He scampers for a couple yards. We crossed the 50. Ok, now we’re going to need a couple plays. Knowing those situations, talking through it with (Mark) Brunell in practice, going over the two-minute drill with the wide-outs on Fridays, that kind of stuff translates to the game. Now when Schotty (Brian Schottenheimer) calls the play, it’s like nothing. It’s almost like a pitcher and a catcher, where the catcher signals the call and the pitcher can shake it off. Well, Schotty will give some calls and sometimes I’m like, ‘No, let’s go with this.’ He’s like, “All right, you got it. I’m going to come back with blank on the next play.” We’re on the same page. It happened twice against the Browns and then this past game, where he said, “I’m thinking this, then this.” I said, ‘No, not the first one.’ He gave me a different play and then the same second play. We’re starting to get it. We’re starting to feel what’s coming next. It’s been great. It’s been a great transition and a good run these last couple weeks.”

On whether he is learning things about Santonio Holmes every week…

“(I learn new things) about all our guys every week, about Braylon (Edwards), too. He’s someone who, last year, we didn’t really get on the same page. Now, I’ve had an offseason with him. I’ve had over a full season in games with him. I’m starting to understand where he’s going to be. Like that ball on the sideline, I knew exactly where he was going to be. He knew exactly where I would throw it. That’s why he got a little separation. With Santonio, we’ve repped so many throws, I know right when he’s coming out of his break, where he’s going to go, if it’s back downhill, if it’s keeping a route high (or) if it’s coming back friendly on a route. They’re the best. The scariest thing about Santonio is he has such late hands. The touchdown throw, the last play, it looks like he’s going to catch it with his shirt or something. He doesn’t even put his hands out until the very last second. He does a great job of keeping defenders off balance.”

On if he had any comebacks wins in high school or college…

“No, not until this year.”

On how he has gotten this comeback ability…

“I think it’s something we’ve worked on and something you get more confidence with as you do. It’s always been something that I’ve kind of wanted. I know that that was kind of a knock coming out of college, that, “He’s never had a come back in a game. They’ve been up. He hasn’t played a lot of football.” To me, that was, ‘All right, give me a chance to come back. I’m going to win it, not (by) making a miraculous play, but just making the plays we know how to make.’ That’s what we’ve done. I’ve been smart with the ball at the end of the games. We’ve been pretty fortunate with some good receivers to make plays.”

On if a quarterback dreams of leading his team to comeback wins…

“Absolutely. All week last week, they had the top 10 comebacks on the NFL Network. Those are the kind of games you always want to be a part of. They showed the one where I think (Frank) Reich comes back for Buffalo instead of (Jim) Kelly. The fans are trying to get back in the game. That’s the kind of stuff you think about after the game in the locker room, sitting next to (Mark) Brunell. ‘Man, how crazy is that? We were just watching that sitting on the couch with Patrick Turner, watching it in the house the other day.’ Boom, we’re in that situation. I’m playing catch on the sidelines like, ‘All right, here we go.’”

On if he had a favorite quarterback or comeback growing up…

“(John) Elway has always been one of my favorites. (He’s) all that. He’s tough. He’ll make plays with his legs. (He) just seems like one of those guys that’s a fighter, just never dies, never dies. (He) always gave his team another chance, whether he’s running, getting hit, helicoptered for the first down, or he makes a throw on the run, or he’s backing up and making a throw deep down-the-field with all his arm. That’s something you want to emulate, but at the same time, you want to stay within yourself and do what you do best.”

On whether he has ever met John Elway…

“No, I have not.”

This Article Was Written By Tyson Rauch

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