It's been only two days and a few hours since the Jets' final cutdown on Saturday. But it seems like an eon or two when we haven't heard publicly from general manager John Idzik and head coach Rex Ryan speak about the bigger releases they made to get their squad down to its initial 53-player limit.
This afternoon, the GM and the head coach for the first time spoke with reporters about the releases of CB Dimitri Patterson and WR Stephen Hill, among other moves.
"We're excited for the regular season to start and to get going with our roster," Idzik said on the conference call. "But it's always tough because we know how much the players pour into it. When it comes down to the end, we had some very stiff competition going on. And we said from the outset we would be letting go some very good players."
The GM was asked specifically about Patterson's release after what the team called the veteran's unexcused absences from the third preseason game against the Giants and the following practice and his resulting suspension for the rest of the preseason.
"Ultimately, we did what we felt was best for the New York Jets in releasing him," Idzik said, adding about Patterson's statements questioning the truthfulness of the team's comments about his situation, "We don't operate too much on statements. I prefer direct communication. That way, if something is quoted or is said, especially in this information age when things fly out pretty quickly or are segmented, you always like to hear from the player.
"Suffice it to say, I think he had an open forum here to spill everything out, and then we told him our views as well. In the end we felt it was the best thing for the Jets."
Ryan was asked about Stephen Hill's release despite the 2012 second-round draft pick having played only two injury-filled seasons in green and white. The coach said it had something to do with Hill's limited contributions to special teams — he was in for only three special teams in the past two regular seasons combined — but it was more than that.
"We talk about the competition. That's what we had here, a lot of guys competing for a few spots," Ryan said. "We certainly didn't give up on Stephen. We provide the opportunity to make the team. Some guys reached out and took it, other guys, it never worked out."
He shrugged off a parting shot from Hill's agent that Hill wasn't given a fair shot to make the roster.
"It's probably a tough situation for everybody to be in. He has a right to his opinion. I believe I do support all our players," the coach said. "I certainly wish Stephen the best. But hey, I've got skin like an armadillo. I'll take whatever they throw at me."
Another player exchange Idzik was queried about was the keeping of seventh-round rookie
"Both Trevor and Garrett are quality outside linebackers," Idzik said. "We've got experience with Garrett. He's a tremendous guy, he plays hard, he plays like a Jet, he acts like a Jet. Then we had a newcomer in Trevor. He made a very positive impression on us very quickly here."
Ryan declined to speculate about the Jets' lingering injuries with opening day against Oakland less than a week away. About the closest he came to an early I-report was when he said of the availability of CB
But Rex, always optimistic about his team's chances, replied as expected regarding questions about the Jets' roster on the doorstep of the 2014 season:
"When this thing gets kicked off for real, we have absolutely no excuses. ... We feel good about the players we're lining up with. Up close and personal, I feel great about that. I have no problem where we're at right now as a football team."
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