Battered but not beaten, Bart Scott continues to lead the Jets into battle.
"We didn't envision this season. We didn't envision playing without the players we've lost," he told me on "Jets Talk LIVE" this week. "We're trying to just go out there and fight. It's not from a lack of effort, a lack of want. We just haven't played good enough football to get the victories and we're hoping we can get that turned around this week."
It was a chaotic week here in Florham Park as a Daily News report cited anonymous Jets sources ripping Tim Tebow. Scott, who questioned the credibility of the article and who was also disappointed in former teammate LaDainian Tomlinson's suggestion that the Madbacker could be a source, has never been one from backing away.
"I would put my name to it," he said. "It would say Bart Scott said and when anybody else would ask me, I would say, "Ya. I said this.'"
The Jets have dismissed the notion that they have a divided locker room. Even after dropping five of six and falling to the basement of the AFC East, the Green & White will move forward as one unit.
"As far as being fragmented and breaking up, that's not the case. We're unified, we're together and we stand behind each other. We know what it looks like when you don't stick together. You have no chance," he said. "We know the only chance we have to try and win games (is to) continue to fight and improve our record and try to show our fans that we care and that we're dedicated to putting the best product that we can put out there. No matter what our circumstances our — that's what we're dedicated to."
Scott, who repeatedly has taken young players under his wing here during his four-year tenure, came to camp in tip-top shape after a great offseason that included mixed martial arts training with Kenrick Ellis. But after an excellent start to the 2012 campaign, he suffered ligament damage to his big toe. After persevering for weeks, he had his consecutive game streak snapped at 119 when he was deactivated in Week 8 against the Dolphins.
"It was frustrating because I did put the work in during the offseason. I thought I started very well and then to get three games in… People don't realize I was dealing with this for five weeks before I even took one week off," he said. "Generally this is one of those things where you take four to five weeks off for it to heel, but I felt like we didn't have that to spare. It's part of the game. You put in the work because you put in the work because you have a chance to do something. It doesn't always work out the way you want it to and adversity and injuries are part of the game. You just deal with it."
Scott, who racked up his first sack of the season last weekend in Seattle, knows the Rams will provide a stern test on Sunday.
"Steven Jackson doesn't get any easier after facing a Marshawn Lynch. We're talking about a similar back, who is dynamic and maybe a little bit bigger than Lynch," he said. "It's going to be fun. Schotty has a familiarity with this defense and this scheme, and I'm sure he's been anticipating and circling this game and we have some former teammates on that side — Wayne Hunter, Rob Turner and (Matt) Mulligan. I'm sure they'll be juiced up and it will be a great challenge.
"At this point, it's not about the Rams," he added. "It's about us and we need a victory in the worst way. We plan on hopping on that plane with all intentions of getting a victory, getting this thing turned around and being able to ride some positive momentum."
Scott continues to ride positive momentum away from the gridiron. His work in the community has been consistently overlooked, but his impact is felt by many. This week, he volunteered with Jets teammates at a New York Food Bank location in the Bronx and next week — almost four years after leaving the Ravens — his charity will feed the homeless at the Helping Up Mission in Baltimore.
"I feel like everything happens for a reason and people cross because God intended them to cross. I ended up here because God intended for me to be here," he said. "Even when I'm done playing here, I will continue to do everything I've done here because this is a part of my life, this is a part of my history. Between Baltimore and New York and Detroit, I'm always going to be in the community helping those places because those are places that affected me and my family and places that embraced me."