The circus came to town, and left the New York Jets as it rolled on to the next town. Or so they would have you believe.
In 2012, we were left with Santonio Holmes fighting with team-mates, we had the Tim Tebow experiment and Mark Sanchez found his face colliding with Brandon Moore's derrière! We were a circus, but you wouldn't catch a Jets fan with a smile on their face.
In 2013 we maintained the circus tag, but that was more media generated. We had no player arguments, no media frenzy over a QB who couldn't throw the football and Geno managed to avoid the offensive line's big behind. By the end of the season, the circus had left town and left a surprising 8-8 team.
Big personalities that personified the circus are no more. Mark Sanchez is enjoying a Philly Cheesesteak, Santonio Holmes is enjoying unemployment and Antonio Cromartie is living it up in Glendale, Arizona. Doesn't it feel like a fresh start? it certainly does to me. No longer bogged down by ridiculous player contracts, new life, new blood and if you believe Willie Colon, new camaraderie.
Speaking recently, Colon commented about the change in atmosphere around the locker room:
"It's a real humble environment," Colon said Tuesday night at the 21st annual United Way Gridiron Gala at the Waldorf-Astoria. "Just the locker room's a way different locker from what I saw last year. Guess are mingling, hanging with each other, and I think we're forming something good."
"Honestly, when I walked in here last year, it was different-it was different than what I was used to,"
"But right now, guys are always around each other, it seems like more of a family environment."
"I wasn't here when they made the AFC championship run [in 2009 and 2010], but a lot of guys are talking that it starts to feel like that again, so that's a step in the right direction."
Some will place a higher value on a united locker room, however I don't think you can put a price on something like that. When you have guys going out there, wanting to play for each other, wanting to play for the coaches, good things happen.
I'm not saying this means we're heading for glory, and it's easy to say these things in May. What if we start the season with a couple of losses? How the locker room reacts in adversity is always the biggest test. However I can't help feel a breath of fresh air around the Jets organization.
What do we attribute this to? Is it the new leadership of John Idzik. Is it because we have plucked the ego's from the roster, the entitled, the players earning money their play did not warrant? who knows! However it's great to hear these things from the players, especially the veterans.