Rex Ryan knows the Jets’ Monday night win over the Vikings was victory-licious, but he also knows it wasn’t a perfect game. He said at his news conference early this afternoon that Mark Sanchez “has played a lot better than he did in this game,” his receivers dropped some passes, and the defense’s yielding of three second-half touchdown passes, even though executed by a great and desperate opponent, were “disappointing things.”
But we know Rex and he’s not giving anything back, especially a W that puts his Jets at 4-1 — they’re in sole possession of first place in the AFC East for only the 12th week since 2000 and they’re off to one of the seven best five-game starts in franchise history.
The head coach also didn’t agree with a few of the postgame storylines being talked about today. One of them was the theory that he and the Jets’ medical and training staffs rushed Darrelle Revis back too soon from his hamstring injury. Revis said he had to fight through his hamstring soreness during the game and the muscle was sore and swollen afterwards.
“I certainly don’t think so,” he said of the rush-back theory. “We wouldn’t have put him out there if we didn’t think he was healthy. We thought he was healthy and ready to play, he thought he was healthy and ready to play.
“Hopefully this is not a big deal, he’ll be able to get through it and we’ll have him back up for Denver. We’ll always do what’s in the best interests of the football team and the player. That’s the truth. I’ll stand by that and I live by that. If any player would come up and say he can’t play, he wouldn’t play. It’s as simple as that.”
Ryan also wasn’t ready to venture out early in the week and speculate that it might be a good idea to send Revis back to rehab for this week and the bye week and have him renewed for Game 7 at home against Green Bay.
“I certainly understand where you’re coming from with that question and all that kind of stuff, but if he’s healthy, we want to play Darrelle,” he said. “It’s not vacation time. It’s time to beat somebody. This is an AFC opponent and we need to win games so we can get into the postseason. That would be my thought.”
Then there was the matter of Dwight Lowery’s late interception-return TD against Brett Favre, even though the Jets defenders were reminded before that series started: In case of interception, fall down.
“We work on it all the time. It’s called ‘Get Down Victory,’ ” Ryan said. “When you jump a flat route, it’s a touchdown. If you intercept a flat, generally you’re taking it to the house, nobody’s going to be able to stop you. It’s one of those things that are instinctive. Before we ran out, we’re telling our guys, ‘Get Down Victory,’ as soon as you intercept it, get down.
“But I’m not complaining because he scored a touchdown.”
Ryan does concur that the Jets haven’t played a complete game yet, but agrees that being 4-1 despite that is all the more encouraging.
“You look at our defense, the numbers aren’t where they were last year. But look at the challenge we’ve had. We’ve had some of our best players not on the field,” he said. “We’re just now hitting our stride on defense, and that could be a scary thing. … When we get our guys healthy and we’re humming and playing with our confidence that we know we can play with, this team’s going to be right there.”
Ryan said LB Calvin Pace, who returned from his broken foot for his first game action in 5½ weeks, “is really sore today,” but no prognosis for Denver yet. Other than that, he doesn’t expect his Wednesday injury list to contain anything more than “just basic bumps and bruises.” … The other 4-1 or better starts in franchise history: 4-0-1 in 1966, 4-1 in 1982, ’85, ’86 and 2000, and the 5-0 start in 2004. A win a mile high in Denver would give the Jets their sixth 5-1 start ever.
You’re the One
The Jets’ 155 rushing yards propelled them not only past Minnesota but back to the top of the NFL’s rushing stats. The Green & White are averaging 165.2 yards per game, No. 1 in the league for the first time this season. Coupled with last year’s rise to the top, the Jets have been first in this category 10 times in the last 16 weeks.
“They have a really good front seven, and we feel like we have a really good rushing offense,” said tackle Damien Woody, who provided one of the right-side blocks that sprang Shonn Greene for his 23-yard misdirection TD dash. “It was kind of like a battle of the titans.”
Appropriately, the team that once was named the Titans prevailed.
“We know we can run the ball,” said guard Brandon Moore. “We’re a pretty confident team.”
The Jets also remain No. 1 in the NFL in percentage of interceptions thrown (0.0), number of giveaways (1), turnover margin (plus-11), opponents’ completion percentage (51.1) and point margin (plus-54 total, plus-10.8 per game).
Tags: Brett Favre, Calvin Pace, Darrelle Revis, Dwight Lowery, Minnesota Vikings, Rex Ryan
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