If you went by the sky, there was kind of a Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse feel to today’s team photo. Even though the sun poked out here and there, it was hiding behind a long patch of overcast shortly after noon as the players, coaches and the rest of the support staff began climbing the small yet sturdy gray bleachers.
But if you went by the mood of the players, it was a fun break from today’s meetings, and 56-35 makes it a whole lot easier to take as well.
Team photos seem to usually be snapped at this time of year but on a Saturday before a home game, once the week’s work is done. But with the Jets’ bye week coming earlier than usual, head coach Eric Mangini found a hole in the schedule for the players to change to their green jerseys and white pants (although two-thirds of the players sported bare lower legs, no socks, in the spirit of the news anchors who wear shorts behind their desks).
The lensmen for this job are familiar with the Mangini Jets. VSN Photography, based on Reading, Pa., travels in a van with the slogan "We Photograph Pride" on the side and shoots only sports team photographs for high schools, colleges and four NFL teams — the Bengals, Redskins, Patriots and Jets.
In fact, this is the sixth year the two-man crew has shot the Jets (and obviously their first at the team’s new Florham Park, N.J., facility). They got the assistant coaches, doctors, trainers, equipment staff and strength staff positioned on the upper tiers of that structure.
Then came the players, who were arranged in increasing numerical order from left to right, the first row sitting on the far sideline of the outdoor turf field, the second row sitting in chairs, the third standing on the ground, then rows 4 and up in the bleachers.
Fitting into the middle of the lower rows was the Jets’ hierarchy — owner Woody Johnson surrounded by executive vice presidents: GM Mike Tannenbaum to his right, Matt Higgins and Thad Sheely to his left.
One person remained to be seated.
"Waiting for you, Coach!" one of the players, probably Kris Jenkins, shouted as Eric Mangini came walking out of the building diagonally toward the "stage."
Mangini’s late arrival was understandable, seeing as he was accompanied by a guest. Curtis Martin is in the neighborhood today.
The legendary running back is getting a tour of the complex, and he stood to the side and watched a ritual he had participated in about a dozen times in his NFL career.
In five minutes, probably less, the positioning and the photos were done and the players clambered down from the framework to resume meetings. Based on the outcome of Sunday’s win over the Cardinals that propelled them into their bye week at 2-2, they should remain photo-worthy through October and deeper into the 2008 season.
More Firsts from the Cards Game
In case you were wondering …
Brett Favre is the first Jets QB to throw for 12 touchdowns in the first four games of a season. Favre is also the first Jets QB to throw for nine TDs in two consecutive games. He’s also the first NFL QB to have six touchdown passes and less than 300 yards in one game since Peyton Manning did it for the Colts against the Lions in 2004.
The Jets’ 34 second-quarter points were the most in any quarter in franchise history. And the last time an NFL team scored more in a quarter, it was the Redskins with 35 second-quarter points in their 42-10 Super Bowl XXII pullaway from the Broncos to end the 1987 season. Only the Lions last year, with 34 fourth-quarter points to pass the Bears, 37-27, had as many as the Jets since then.
The Jets’ turnover differential was one of the three best marks in franchise history. Here are the games in which the Jets registered a plus-6 or better in franchise history (all Jets home games):
|Season||Final Score||TAs-GAs||TO Diff|
|1979||JETS 14, Vikings 7||7-0||+7|
|1984||JETS 43, Bengals 23||6-0||+6|
|2008||JETS 56, Cardinals 35||7-1||+6|
Kurt Warner’s 472 passing yards is the third-most by an opposing QB in franchise history. Dan Marino racked up 521 yards in the Dolphins’ 44-30 loss to the Jets at Miami in 1988, and Bernie Kosar went for 489 in the Jets’ 1986 playoff loss at Cleveland.
Inside the Jets
A dynamic duo of Jets big names are scheduled for tonight’s "Inside the Jets" show live at Charlie Brown’s steakhouse in Chatham, N.J., and on 1050-AM ESPN Radio. WR Laveranues Coles and G Alan Faneca are the guests, along with Jets Flight Crew members Lauren P. and Jessica S. Festivities go from 7-8 p.m.
Tags: Atlantic Health Training Center, Eric Mangini, Kris Jenkins, Mike Tannenbaum, Woody Johnson
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