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‘Ultimate Pro’ Taylor Returns as Jets Foe, Again

Posted by Eric Allen on October 14, 2011 – 8:39 am

The times certainly have changed.

Sure, the Jets and the Dolphins probably won’t exchange recipes Monday night, but Jason Taylor’s season of service with the Jets in 2010 has changed the rhetoric between South Florida and New Jersey.

“JT was a real professional about the way he went about his business, the way he interacted with other plays on the team,” said Jets QB Mark Sanchez on Thursday. “He was respectful of the trainers and the equipment staff. He was the ultimate pro. We loved having him and it’s going to be fun to face him again.”

Taylor started eight regular-season games and appeared in 15 for the Jets last year, racking up five sacks, two forced fumbles and two recoveries along with 35 tackles.

“I’m happy we had him last year. Jason played great for us last year,” said head coach Rex Ryan. “He made some huge plays. I thought Jason was great for this football team, his presence on the field and in the locker room as well. He’s a class act all the way, so I don’t regret signing Jason Taylor here for one second.”

Ryan would have been happy to have Taylor return for a second season, but the Dolphins had renewed interest in the 37-year-old. So he decided to return to Miami for his 15th pro season and 13th with the ‘Fins.

“I had a great time,” said Taylor on a conference call of his time with the Jets. “There are probably some people in Miami who don’t want to hear that, but the fact of the matter is I enjoyed myself last year. We had a good bit of success. Didn’t go quite as far as we would have liked, but the journey was a lot of fun.”

Jets OLB Jamaal Westerman, who attended St. Thomas Aquinas High School in Fort Lauderdale, looked up to Taylor when the latter was in his prime. Now a starter with Taylor gone and Bryan Thomas on injured reserve, Westerman used last season to learn from one of the game’s greatest pass rushers.

“He has a tremendous get-off, long arms and he really knows how to work throughout the game,” Westerman said. “You’ve seen him do it all throughout his career, kind of set guys up. Even last year he had some big games for us. He was a very good player. It was fun playing with him and learning from him also.”

It might have been odd to see Taylor in Green & White, but he had no trouble adapting to a locker room. He was well-liked from the start and his former ‘mates continue to rave about him.

“It was great to cross paths like that,” said NT Sione Pouha. “You have tons of respect for an individual like that. He was a great teammate.”

Jets Nation had a more difficult time embracing the man who once said of some fans, “Jets fans take the C-L out of class.” But many did embrace him and the good-natured Taylor was cheered in 2010. But he isn’t expecting a warm reception Monday night when he turns heel again on the visiting sideline.

“I’m sure I’ll be booed. I tried to do my best to make them cheer last year, but being on the other side of the coin now, I’ll get my fair share of boos, which is to be expected,” he said. “They’re Jets fans and they should be. They’re very passionate about their team and that’s the way it’s supposed to be.”

A veteran of 221 regular-season contests, Taylor has an interesting take on the matchup between the 0-4 ‘Fins and the 2-3 Jets.

“There’s no reason to be desperate. You start being desperate, you do things outside of yourself, you start to take too many risks, and you end up making mistakes because you’re playing with desperation. You don’t need to do that. Just have a sense of urgency. And trust me, we fully anticipate they will have that sense of urgency and focus, and we’re going to have the same thing.”

You wonder if this will be Taylor’s last appearance as a visitor in the rivalry. The teams meet again in Miami on Jan. 1, 2012 and the Jets hope to have playoffs on their radar by then.

“We’ll be excited to see him before the game. And then during the game, we have to get after him, we have to block him,” Sanchez said. “After the game, we’ll say good luck and stay healthy. But hopefully we win this thing.”

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Posted in Eric Allen | 28 Comments »

28 Responses to “‘Ultimate Pro’ Taylor Returns as Jets Foe, Again”

  1. By GaryC on Oct 14, 2011 | Reply

    westermann will need to be more physical at the point of attack,sure dolphins saw the way he was manhandled by gronkowski on running plays and will look to do the same.

  2. By IRA on Oct 14, 2011 | Reply

    Always hated Taylor but repsected him. He won me over last year he seemed like a good guy. He played ok and we would’ve proably not won that Pitt game if he did not get that safety.
    Would really like to see Westerman add to his sack total from last week. Not sure if it was mentiioned but he also had 2 QB hits. He needs to sure up his run support and they have themselves a nice OLB.

  3. By Randy Lange on Oct 14, 2011 | Reply

    Ira, Jamaal Westerman also was the Jet who forced Patriots tackle Nate Solder to hook him to the ground and get called for holding late in the first quarter.

  4. By wayne on Oct 14, 2011 | Reply

    These guys are all independent contractors, easily discarded by teams a some point. I root for them if they play for the team I root for and root against them otherwise. Jason Taylor is a fine example of a football player and a good family man. What’s not to root for?….After the game.

  5. By IRA on Oct 14, 2011 | Reply

    Good note Randy. I have always have been high on Westerman and he should’ve seen more time last year. I guess like they say in this business one player’s misfortunes opens a door for another. I think Westerman will get better and better each week.
    Ok hope this week
    Jets 27- Fish 13
    Westerman 2 sacks with a FF and Kerley 4 catches-60 yds-1 TD and 1 rush for 15 yds.
    GO JETS!!!!!

  6. By wayne on Oct 14, 2011 | Reply

    Wouldn’t be surprised to see OC call a great game with the pressure on Monday, only to return to old ways shortly after……..

  7. By Jet Fan Since '64 Tom on Oct 14, 2011 | Reply

    Westerman si, Taylor no. He was okay for us but not that great, not the future, wouldn’t be a big deal to lose him if we put more emphasis on the draft and had he courage to play the guys who do draft. This is a good example of Rex probably talking without meaning a word that he’s saying, it’s absurdly easy to say he woulda like to have Taylor back after we apparently did little to re-sign him. Kinda like him raving about Clowney, Woodhead, telling us that Mason “will get his opportunities” (yeah, but he didn’t say on which team…).

  8. By Karan on Oct 14, 2011 | Reply

    Tone keeps calling out OC schottenheimer and the O-line. He needs to stop running his mouth because hopefully the Jets won’t do to him what they did with Mason. I don’t mind the comments about Shottenheimer though, he pretty much said we should have thrown deep against the worst pass defense in the NFL. Seriously Rex? How long will it take you to get this man out of here? Until we officially are out of the playoff race?? However, Holmes shouldn’t call out the O-line like that. When fans and now even players want that OC out, it’s seriously time. I hope it doesn’t take a loss to the Dolphins monday night for T-Rex to realize this. Sigh………

  9. By Karan on Oct 14, 2011 | Reply

    When I say get this man out of here, I’m referring to Schottenheimer, not tone.

  10. By GaryC on Oct 14, 2011 | Reply

    jets could have named other guys as a team captain instead of holmes and I believe this is causing problems especially since he has been here for such a small time.If you have problems you keep it in the clubhouse but him and his two cronies had to let the world in on it.Of course all the jet fans know what there problem is and holmes didn’t need to air it out,no pun intended.you notice the great receiver,fitzgerald, johnson and johnson,let their actions do their speaking.

  11. By IRA on Oct 14, 2011 | Reply

    Everybody has to calm down with Schotty like it or not he is here for the year and i agree with wayne he will call a great game this week. Still the players have to make plays.
    All will be better Sunday night in Jet world after the Bills and Pats both lose this week and the Jets enter Monday night able to close the gap to 1 game on both teams. How big will that two week span be after the bye if the Jets are 4-3 and the Pats and Bills each have at least 2 losses? Like Bart says Can’t Wait!

  12. By Tom Spicer on Oct 14, 2011 | Reply

    Wayne, That is the guys on this sites out for the last 2 years they have been saying Marks rating or Marks completion percentage. Now that he has had good numbers in 4 out of 5 games. Its all of a sudden not about numbers anymore.

  13. By Tom Spicer on Oct 14, 2011 | Reply

    Tom 64, A post or 2 earlier you had said Mark had 166 yards vs the Pats. The reason he had 166 yards was the Jets did not thriw the ball enough it was not cause he had a bad game. We thru the ball 44 times vs the Boys, 24 times vs the Jags (in 3 quarters), 44 times vs the Raiders & 35 times vs the Ravens. Now you play the worst pass D in the NFL & you stop throwing the ball. It all goes back to Schotty it makes no sense. He runs it when you are suposed to throw & he throws it when you are supposed to run. Vs the Pats he threw it only 26 times. Mark was 16 of 26 for 61.5%, rating 105.6, 2 TD passes & zero fumbles or picks. In order for him to have 300 yards passing all of his 16 completions would have to have been over 20 yards or he

  14. By Tom Spicer on Oct 14, 2011 | Reply

    would have to had completed a unrealistic 80 plus percent of his passes to have good yardage. The point is this why did we just stop throwing the ball the day we play the worst pass D in the NFL. YOU TELL ME?

  15. By Christopher on Oct 14, 2011 | Reply

    I wouldn’t have a problem with Holmes comments if he was actually doing something. Too many times I am seeing him drop passes. Sure not every pass his way has been perfect, but isn’t that what great receivers do, they catch the “uncatchable” ball? If it hits your hands there is no excuse for dropping it, not when you are the $45M man, and a captain.

    Make some play yourself before critizing others.

  16. By Clarke W. Griswald on Oct 14, 2011 | Reply

    Oh and while I believe Schotty is going to put everything he’s got into this game, because of all the negative media he’s receiving, I still doubt highly we score more then 17 on offense. If we score 17 on offense and 14 on defense, Shotty will get credit for the offense not looking, so bad. It’s high time we see a competent offense, for a full 4 quarters. Even against Jacksonville it was 12 – 3 at half time. Holmes, Tomlinson, Keller, Plaxico and a healthy offensive line, could only muster 10 points against the Jaguars… That should say enough. Rex’s career depends on him delegating important jobs to competent people.

    P.S. Fire Shottenheimer yesterday.

  17. By scjoe on Oct 14, 2011 | Reply

    What you are seeing is exactly what you get when you don’t win. Everyone needs to stop talking and focus more on preparation. That includes Holmes, Rex, Joe Willie (who I always had much respect for) and Mason before he was run out of town. A few wins and the only one we will still be listening to is Rex. It has become obvious he will never stop talking, and that is fine when you are winning, embarrassing when you are losing. As for the debate on stats? None matter if you are not winning. Give me a QB with a 60 rating and a division championship and I will be extremely happy.

  18. By Jet Fan Since '64 Tom on Oct 14, 2011 | Reply

    I completely agree with you on these posts, Spicer, it was ridiculous to limit the throws vs NE just because Rex decided that was the week to re-establish the run, which we didn’t really do anyway. And as iffy as Sanchez has looked at times, I’m also open to the idea that Rex’s naivete on O and Schotty’s lousy work on all levels is holding him back. One reason I don’t usually talk about getting rid of MS anytime soon is because I have this fear that he might blossom instantly on a team that knows what it’s doing on O. As for Holmes talking, I don’t get it for the same reason Moore doesn’t, he couldn’t possibly be doing this stuff without some encouragement. Does somebody (like Rex?) think this is what a team captain is supposed to be doing?

  19. By Another Tom on Oct 14, 2011 | Reply

    IF we MAKE tackles..CATCH the ball..convert SOME third downs..HOLD them on third down…and AVOID stupid penalties…we should easily WIN this game…BACK TO BASICS !

  20. By Another Tom on Oct 14, 2011 | Reply

    Hmmmm..Tone looking to get traded ?

  21. By Christopher on Oct 14, 2011 | Reply

    Holmes is a cancer that will have to be removed, now Moore is calling out Holmes. Moore, really, has that guy ever said anytihng to the media before?

    This mess is going to cost Rex his job if he doesn’t take hold of this team right now. I said it months ago, should have kept Braylon and let Holmes go, sorry I just don’t see how he is a “great” teammate. The warning signs were there after last year’s AFC Champ game. The way things are now I don’t see the Jets winning another game.

    It’s sad that I have to hope they lose to Miami, then maybe the front office will find the need to address the problems. It starts with Rex and Shotty, but Mike T needs to go as well. The Jets are the joke of the NFL right now, Woody please fix it now.

  22. By GaryC on Oct 14, 2011 | Reply

    Ahhh, yes we can get a lot of good picks for holmes,jet fan tom, don’t fall off your chair,but with that salary now will there be a team that want’s him.No wonder shotty has trouble with the offense, he learned under spurrier at florida and we know the problems spurrier had in the pros also,I guess apple doesnt fall far from the tree.

  23. By Hans on Oct 14, 2011 | Reply

    Karan, to get rid of Santonio Holmes would cost the Jets a LOT of dead money in future salary caps. They simply cannot afford to let Tone go.

  24. By Jet Fan Since '64 Tom on Oct 14, 2011 | Reply

    Spurrier was a HUGE bust as a pro QB and a bigger one as a pro HC, so I’m with you there, GaryC. But I doubt Holmes is going anywhere anytime soon or that he’d talk like this unless someone very high up told him it was okay to do so. When you give a guy that kind of deal it’s like making him part of the management like with Fitzgerald, who had veto power over Kolb. No, we’ll get a rid of a lot of guys before we get rid of SH including Sanchez, you might recall SH’s the guy Rex called “the best player on the field.” SH, Mangold, Brick, Keller, Harris, and Revis are the only true untouchables, add Sanchez, Greene, and Cro if they step it up with Wilk, McKnight, Kerley, Wilson on the way up. Everyone else can and will be lost if necessary.

  25. By Jimmer on Oct 15, 2011 | Reply

    This is a little sad. JT seemed to embrace being a JET and playing for Rex. Sure, we don’t have a pass rushing god, but JT was always there to make a qb throw it away.

  26. By Jimmer on Oct 15, 2011 | Reply

    Maybin is a reclamation project. But has given us more than Gholston. The dude don’t quit. I swear he ran over a hundred yards to get the sack he did finally get. We absolutely need to start him against Buffalo. This guy will play like a psychotic against buffalo. He’s proven better than our drafted pass rushers we’ve drafted.

  27. By GaryC on Oct 15, 2011 | Reply

    jet fan tom, you actually think that holmes would wait for permission to air his grievances to the public,you can’t be that gullible with the “it’s all about me” attitude of the athlete today.I said a long time ago just wait for holmes to start losing and he would be one of the first to start rocking the boat,and he is.Some Captain,I would rather have Queeg as my captain.

  28. By Jet Fan Since '64 Tom on Oct 15, 2011 | Reply

    Like I said on the story ahead about our First Lady’s remark about her non-love for our country, for Holmes to talk this way two or three times even after Mason has been traded is simply too reckless to be a mere accident or character quirk. He may be a typical “athlete today” but he’s not psychotic. Something else is going on here and with the way Rex says one thing one day and does another the next, it doesn’t really surprise me.

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