Calvin Pace returned to work from his 4 game suspension on Monday:
'Man, I've never been so happy to see 58 guys in my life,'' Pace said. ''Being away from the game is tough. People asked me, 'Man, why are you home? Don't you have a game today?' And, I had to explain to them why.''
Coach Rex Ryan was pretty excited to see his pass-rushing standout back at the team's training facility.
''I wasn't going to kiss him on the lips,'' Ryan said, smiling, ''but I thought about it.''
Pace participated in training camp and preseason games, but was banned from contact with the team after being suspended in July without pay for testing positive for a banned substance.
''It really humbled me,'' said Pace, who'll practice for the first time Wednesday. ''When you're not playing and you don't have what you love to do, and you're not doing it, it's tough. I'm just happy to be back.''
After he was alerted at the end of last season of the test result, Pace sent in the supplements he took to the league, but lost his appeal. He hasn't specified what he took, only saying it was ''something that you can get at any GNC.''
Think about how good this defense has been the first quarter of the season. Some really good offenses like the Titans, Patriots, and Saints have been totally shut down. All of this came without the best pass rusher in the lineup.
Based on what we've seen, how good will the Jets become? Will this team end the year as the top unit in the league?