Rex Ryan 10/12 Press Conference

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - OCTOBER 11: Head coach Rex Ryan of the New York Jets coaches against the Minnesota Vikings at New Meadowlands Stadium on October 11, 2010 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)

New York Jets Head Coach Rex Ryan, 10.12
Opening remarks…

We're good.  We still won, so when we go back and look at it, we found a way to win.  We had a lot of great things happen in the game, and then we had a lot of not so good things (happen), but (you’ve) got to give the opponent credit.  I mean, (Brett) Favre and (Randy) Moss' completion, it was a perfect throw to a great vertical receiver.  We had the Percy Harvin one, the second touchdown he caught, I mean, Jimmy (Leonhard) plays it well.  He pushes him out of bounds, at least we thought.  I was getting ready to challenge it, and then the crew did a great job as they clearly showed the picture that the kid made an unbelievably, athletic play getting both feet in, so I put that thing right back in my pocket.  That was a great play on his part (and a) great throw by Favre.  The other one that Percy caught and ran for a touchdown, it's just I would have liked to have seen us take a shot at him, but the kid made a nice catch and made a great run after the catch.
That was some of the disappointing things, but there were so many highlights, starting with the fact we were able to run the ball effectively against a team that really does an outstanding job stopping the run.  That was really encouraging.  We had a couple big runs called back by penalty.  (I’m) not questioning the referees’ calls, but they were just unfortunate.  We'll say that.  We were unfortunate that we had two of them, two big runs called back that really could have helped us.  I thought overall the protection was pretty good.  I thought Mark (Sanchez) has played a lot better than he played in this game.  He had a couple throws that I know he wish he had back that weren't as accurate maybe as he's been in these last three weeks anyway.  Then I thought we dropped some passes that hurt us.  But other than that, we'll take it.  Like we said last night, we'll take it.  That's a big win against a good football team, and now we're moving on, getting ready to face Denver, who's probably leading the league in passing and you're playing at their stadium, which is a tough place to play. 
On if Darrelle Revis had a setback with his hamstring injury…
I'm not sure.  He hasn't been in yet as far as I know.  He might have been in and nobody has told me.  When I met with the trainers, I know he hadn't been in today.  They did treat him last night.  There was added swelling in his leg, but hopefully he'll be ready to roll. 
On if Revis was rushed back too early…
I certainly don't think so because we wouldn't have put him out there if we didn't think he was healthy.  You know what I mean?  We thought he was healthy, ready to play.  I think he felt he was healthy (and) ready to play.  It's funny because I know when we look at Darrelle, like Darrelle played a decent football game.  But for the standards of Darrelle Revis, let's face it, we expect him to go out and if this was golf, we expect him to birdie every hole.  That's the truth.  Now, if he has a couple of pars and a bogey every now and then (people will say), "What's wrong with Revis?"  Hopefully this injury is not that big a deal.  Hopefully, it's just a natural thing that once you extend it that yes there's going to be some swelling and soreness, but hopefully he'll be able to get through this and we'll have him back up this week against Denver.  Again, what we've always said, and it's true, we will always do what's in the best interest of the football team and the player, and that's the truth.  I'll stand by that and I'll live by that.  If any player would come up and say that they can't play, they don't feel they can play, they're ready to play, then they would not play.  It's as simple as that.

More after the jump.

On if there was any discussion during the game about pulling Revis out of the game…
No in fact, I was thinking about just the opposite, like are there things we can do to move him to put him on Percy (Harvin) because that Harvin kid was hurting us a little bit.  I actually thought just the opposite.  I thought about challenging him more.  I never saw it.  Now, you could see that the two passes he did give up, the one touchdown to Percy Harvin and then the one to (Greg) Lewis late in the game, that was when it was like, Darrelle plays better than that normally.  He's going to give up completions.  Five years from now, Darrelle is going to get beat for a touchdown.  It doesn't happen very often, but he's going to get beat for a touchdown.  He's going to give up completions.  His standard is set so high that I want him to understand, ‘Hey, look, breathe a little.  You don't have to shut out every single person.’  Sometimes I think those numbers when you match guys up, I think it's unfair that they come back in there because when I said last year he had the best year in the history of any corner in my opinion, I wasn't lying.  I was just stating the facts.  He just needs to go play and we need to look at that.  I hope he's healthy enough where he can keep going, but that's the thing that I want Darrelle to know is have fun and play like you always do.  He's about as big a competitor as there is.  So, if he was sore during the course of the game, I certainly didn't know that.  Like I said, I'm probably as competitive as anybody.  I was trying to say, ‘Hey, I want my best.  Come here, Darrelle.’  Can we put him on the guy that's really hurting us?  That's kind of the state I was in.  I had no idea that (he was sore).  I hope he's not hurt.  I hope it's just maybe a little thing that happens and you push through it.  We'll see.  But again, we'll always do what's in the best interest of the player and the team. 
On if he hesitated to play Revis due to the rain and slick field…
No, to be honest with you, because it wasn't a matter of testing it in my opinion.  We had already tested it for three weeks.  It was the fact that we were ready to go.  That thought did not occur to me. 
On Revis casting doubt on playing against Denver and him sounding more optimistic…
Well, I haven't seen him yet.  I know he was sore last night and I know he had swelling.  The doctors and trainers, we'll see (what they say).  We haven't seen him today.  In my opinion or what has been told to me is things like this happen.  Calvin Pace is really sore today.  Guys have pushed through things and have been a while.  Hopefully, he'll be just fine and he'll be 100 percent ready to roll.  If not, we'll look at, again, what's in the best interests of him and the team. 
On if there were any other injuries from the game yesterday…
No, I think basic bumps and bruises and all that.  Jimmy Leonhard, I haven't heard anything about, but he's got to be sore, that little dude.  He gets killed on punt returns all the time and then he's out there making a game-saving tackle on the kickoff team.  I mean, he's a tough little dude. 
On if Jim Leonhard usually plays on the kickoff team…
No, he's been used a few times.  When we want to make sure we get the guy down, we put Leonhard out there a bunch. 
On what it says about the team to win without Mark Sanchez having a big game…
Well, it speaks volumes of the type of team we have.  It is a team, and there's going to be some times that Mark (Sanchez) is the guy.  Sometimes it's going to be Shonn Greene, sometimes it's going to be LT (LaDainian Tomlinson), sometimes it's going to be Braylon (Edwards), Santonio (Holmes).  That's when you know you've got a great team.  The great thing is it's an unselfish group.  They just want to win.  This team just wants to win.  When you see LT, the most enthused he was is when Shonn breaks off that play and makes that big run.  That's what it's all about.  To see the guys on the sidelines pumping each other up, building each other up, that's what it's all about, and that's where this football team is right now.  When we went into that game, I mentioned it to the team about, in my opinion, I thought we'd win.  I knew it would be a hard-fought game.  I challenged the guys, you've got to dig deep and be consistent and do it throughout the game.  I felt like I couldn't tell them how we were going to win the game, but I just thought we'd win.  That's the beauty of where this football team is right now.  It's almost the old, the pride of the New York Jets.  We're going to win because we've got the pride of the New York Jets.  That's how I feel right now. 
On if Sanchez and Santonio Holmes are still working on their timing…
(It) could be.  One time, he kind of did a little dance step to try to catch one.  You'd like to see the ball thrown differently or just something a little short, because there were some times when I'm like, ‘Oh, yes, it's going to be a touchdown, and oh, it just missed.’  There were several of those that we just weren't quite there yesterday and not just with Santonio, either, but some of the other guys.  The fact that we never quite hit those, but just think when we do hit those, when everybody is on the same page and all that.  Really, I think the thing with Tone (Santonio Holmes), I was impressed because he made a couple of huge catches for us, big ones, and Mark had some big throws on third down when we really needed them.  It's great to see Tone fitting right back in there with Jerricho (Cotchery) and with Braylon (Edwards).  I will say something about Braylon, too, the key third down, I looked over and I'm like, ‘There's no way this corner can cover Braylon Edwards.’  I was right (laughing).  It was just a great throw and a great catch.
On if Sanchez should have taken the play clock down to 2:03 in the fourth quarter…
Yes, that would have been nicer.  That's why in that time we took a shot to throw the football, because we were like, ‘Okay, the thing is going to get to two minutes anyway.’  I probably should have made sure that Mark knew that you snap this thing with a second left, and that's it.  I think he got excited we had a play called that he thought he could hit and really didn't quite have the presence to know where that clock was.  So I don't mind the play, throwing the football there, that's fine.  The clock is going to be down to two minutes.  Okay, it doesn't work.  Well, when it was short, now you almost have to pick up the first down.  When it was 2:04, it's like, ‘Oh, great, now we have to pick up a first down.’  So we throw those two incompletions in a row.  You know me, I'm normally the most conservative guy, like hell, let's just run it, let's just keep pounding it, pound it, we'll run the clock down like that.  But, our offense was rolling pretty good, and I had a lot of confidence in our passing game as well.  We thought we could make a play, it's just we mishandled it.  Again, I'm the guy that should be responsible for it.  I should have made sure Mark knew the exact situation. 
On Dwight Lowery running in for the touchdown instead of falling to the ground…
We work on it all the time (and) it’s called "get down victory", but when you jump a flat route, it's a touchdown.  That right there, if you intercept a flat, you generally are taking it to the house, and nobody is going to be able to stop you.  It's just one of those things that was instinctive.  Any time you undercut, you basically are taking it to the house.  We call it "get down victory."  Before we ran out, we were telling our guys, "get down victory," which means as soon as you intercept it, you get down with it because I've seen a ton of times when the ball gets thrown down the field, mainly is what you're talking about, you intercept it you've got to get down because I've seen time and time again a guy will fumble.  When you intercept a flat route, it's nothing but you and the goal line.
On if Lowery had gotten down, the team could have run the clock out…
Well, that's true.  Once you're up two scores, the game was over anyway, so if you get in the end zone the game is over.  There's nothing they can do about it.
On the possibility that Minnesota could have scored quickly and kick an onsides kick after Lowery scored on his interception…
Yes, and kicked an onsides kick and all that stuff, but we could have given the ball to Larry Csonka and fumbled it.  There's a lot of those types of things.  You'd like to see them get down, but I'm not complaining because he scored a touchdown.
On if he is going to keep Antonio Cromartie on vertical receivers until Revis’ hamstring is better…
Well, yes, I'd like to see him come back.  Right now, we knew that Cromartie matched up well against Moss.  I never wanted him (Revis) to run those 20 go-routes.  Could he match up?  Could we put Cro on those guys to give them a tough down?  Yes, we could, but we never made that decision until late in the week that we were definitely going to go with Cromartie matching up with Randy Moss.
On if Revis would have matched up against Moss if he was 100 percent…
Well, we could have, but that Percy Harvin kid is pretty good.  We happen to have an unbelievable corner, an All-Pro corner in Antonio Cromartie.  Let's face it, he is playing lights out.  The beauty of having the two guys we have, when they're both rolling and we get Revis playing like Revis, you can do whatever you want now.  We've got two Pro Bowl corners, one of the best in the league and the other one is not far behind.  That's the way we envisioned it when we traded for Cromartie, and that's what we have.  Clearly, he's the guy that from a body standpoint, he matches up well against Randy Moss. 
On if there is some thought not to play Revis against Denver this week…
I certainly understand where you're coming from with that question, but if he's healthy, we want to play Darrelle.  If he is healthy, then guys, 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. Is he going to be better three weeks from now if we don't play him or all that?  I think that still has to be determined.  I don't think we're there yet. 
On if it’s encouraging that his team hasn’t had a complete game from all three phases, yet are 4-1…
I think the big thing that's kind of looked at like defensively right now, the numbers aren't where they were last year, but look at the challenge that we've had.  We've had some of our best players not on the field, and yet you see the difference a Calvin Pace makes.  He has a sack and a half, and we've got to do a great job of rotating.  We've got three outstanding outside backers with Jason Taylor, Bryan Thomas (and) Calvin Pace.  When Calvin was down for four games, we never had that flexibility that we have now.  We're just now getting ready to hit our stride on defense.  That could be a scary thing.  The fact we've overcome Kris Jenkins' injury just speaks volumes about Mike DeVito and Sione (Pouha) because those guys are playing great, too.  We get our guys healthy, and we're humming and playing with our confidence that we know we can play with.  This team is going to be right there

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