Jets linebacker Bart Scott met with reporters this afternoon to clarify comments he made regarding fans who greeted the Jets as they entered the MetLife Stadium tunnel at halftime of Thursday’s game against the Patriots.
Scott was quoted by the Daily News as saying, “The person yelling at you probably was picked last in dodgeball all through high school.”
The 11th-year veteran met with head coach Rex Ryan to discuss the matter and said he was making a generalization with his above quote.
This afternoon No. 57 told reporters that he has a tremendous amount of respect for the fans and the sacrifices they make. But he also stressed that he is always going to protect his team and organization.
“I mean, it’s freedom of speech, you know?” Scott said. “You can say what you want. I mean, as long as nobody gets physical or puts their hands on you, they’ll understand. But we should also understand that within those stands are family members, are wives, are kids and they have to live that. But I guess that’s what we sign up for.”
Ryan and Scott both agree that fans are going to display their frustrations when their team isn’t winning and isn’t performing at a high level, and that players and coaches shouldn’t allow what fans say affect them.
“We’ve got to appreciate our fans,” Ryan said. “Obviously in the good times it’s much easier than in the bad times.”
Scott wouldn’t say how long his conversation with Ryan lasted, but he said he understands where the coach is coming from.
“That’s the way it is in the life of a public figure,” the 2006 Pro Bowl selection said. “We live in a fishbowl and everything we do is analyzed and criticized. I don’t read into it and I don’t buy it. It takes a family member or someone who knows me to tell me what someone is saying and I take it all in stride, because at the end of the day, I know who and what I am and what I stand for.”
Scott, who has been battling through a turf toe injury most of the season, said he remembers when former NFL quarterback Tommy Maddox had a bad game and fans dumped trash and litter at his house.
“Is that wrong? I don’t know,” Scott said.
With a 4-7 record, it hasn’t been an easy year on the Jets players or their fans. Yet as one of the Green & White’s most outspoken leaders, Scott believes good things can still transpire.
“We all came into this season with expectations,” he said. “But I think the real true character of a man is tested when things aren’t going well. Anybody can sit up here and answer questions and do things when it’s easy, when it’s convenient. But when times get tough, that’s when a real man steps up and shows his true character.”
Yes, the fans were embarrassed by the Patriots game. The players were as well. Scott just hopes they will stay behind them the rest of the season.
“We’re practicing hard and we’re trying to finish it,” he said. “Hopefully with these last five games, we can make our fans proud, and Jets Nation and Gang Green feel like that we fought for them and that we put a good product out on the field for them.”
Thursday Injury Reports
There was some movement on the Jets’ injury report today, most of it favorable. WR Jeremy Kerley (heel/hamstring/illness), WR Chaz Schilens (concussion/hip) and LB Bart Scott (toe) all went from being limited during team drills Wednesday to being full-go today, and CB Aaron Berry (quad) went from DNP to limited. WR Clyde Gates (concussion) remained sidelined and S LaRon Landry (heel) did not practice in keeping with his weekly routine. G Brandon Moore (hip) was limited. New to the 20-player list today: LB Ricky Sapp (ankle, limited) and CB Kyle Wilson (illness, full).
Changes on the Cardinals’ 10-player list: RB William Powell (shoulder) and S Justin Bethel (shoulder) both went from limited to full today.
Tags: Bart Scott, MetLife Stadium, New England Patriots, Rex Ryan
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