Jets Podcast


Colon Wants to Give ‘Em Hell

Posted Jun 3, 2013

Willie Colon has finished his past three NFL seasons on injured reserve. The veteran guard, who signed with the Jets in March after spending his first seven professional seasons in Pittsburgh, knows the question on everyone’s mind.

“Right now, I’m working my tail off to be healthy.  This is an amazing training staff,” he told me on the latest “Jets Talk LIVE” installment.  “John Mellody and his whole staff are doing an amazing job with me.  I feel good — I feel great.  I can’t do (anything) with me getting hurt.  It’s just the way of the game, but I’m going to go out there and compete, fight hard and get after it.  That’s what I’m going to do my best at.”

The 30-year-old Colon was born in the Bronx, attended Cardinal Hayes High School and then played at collegiately at Hofstra.  He was a fourth-round pick of the Steelers in the 2006 NFL Draft, but now he has a fresh start with his hometown team.

“I’m really excited about the guys in the room.  I have a great offensive line coach in Coach (Mike) Devlin.  For me, it’s just playing football,” he told me.   “I love the game.  I don’t really care too much for the glitz and glamour — I’m all about letting the ball roll out on the field and doing what I do.”

Coming from Pittsburgh, Colon is no stranger to facing exotic blitzes.  Hall of Famer Dick LeBeau dialed them up in the ‘Burgh — now it’s Rex Ryan and Dennis Thurman in Florham Park.

“You see guys standing up.  This defense is very athletic,” Colon said.  “I’m really impressed with (Quinton) Coples and Muhammad (Wilkerson), seeing those guys fly around.  You can tell it’s going to be an attack defense — they are going to get after guys.  For us on the other side of the ball, we want to set the tone.  We want to be the aggressors.   We want to be the bullies on the block.  If it goes both ways, we’re going to have success.”

The Jets have an imposing left side of the line as Colon is currently situated between a couple of Pro Bowlers in C Nick Mangold and LT D’Brickashaw Ferguson.  The 6’3”, 315-pound Colon, a member of the Steelers XLIII championship team, has an approach that New Yorkers will love.

“We have the right guys to do it.  It’s about us up front executing and really getting after guys,” he said.  “We have to outwork the rest of the NFL — that’s the bottom line.  I don’t think we are going to scare nobody on paper, but our job is to flat out show up on Sunday and give ‘em hell.”

The Jets will have two new starters on the O-line in 2013 as Matt Slauson signed with the Chicago Bears in free agency and veteran Brandon Moore remains unsigned.  Thus far in OTAs attended by the media, Colon has manned the LG position while former Lion Stephen Peterman has received first-team reps on the right side.  Mangold, widely considered the best center in football, remains the commander in the middle.

“He is the brain of the offense, so I have to adjust to him and understand what he’s talking about and what he sees, so I can adjust my game to kind of fit everybody’s,” Colon said.  “It’s not about being selfish out there — it’s about five guys on one page and on one sound.  If we’re able to do that, the sky’s the limit.”

While the offensive language is new for Colon, he has embraced the fresh start.

“It really hasn’t hit me.   I was just really happy to have a job,” he said.  “In this league being hurt three straight years and not knowing if you’re ever going to lace it up again, it rattles your head and it rattles your soul.  So when I got the call to come home to be a Jet and be a part of Rex Ryan’s club, for me it was a pride factor that: 1.) I’m blessed to have a job 2.) I’m blessed to come home and 3.) I’m blessed to come home and do what I love to do.

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