Hours before the NFL Schedule was announced, new Jets ILB C.J. Mosley told reporters that head coach Adam Gase already has the New England Patriots in his sights.
"He's going for that one team that's been winning every single year in this division," Mosley said during a conference call. "He said that's one of the main reasons he came here and we all believe that. And the guys who are new additions to the team, we're pretty much here for the same reason."
Gase, who spent the past three seasons leading the Miami Dolphins, has remained in a division that the Patriots have dominated for two decades. The defending Super Bowl champions have claimed 10 consecutive AFC East titles and 16 of 18 overall.
"He came here to win. At the end of the day, the Patriots have shown who we have to beat to get to that top spot," Mosley said. "Not overlooking anybody else in the division or anybody else on our schedule, we know for us to get to where we want to be — we know what team we have to knock off."
Wide receiver Jamison Crowder, who like Mosley joined the Green & White in free agency, didn't want to look too far down the road. The Jets are still in Phase 1 of their workout program, with activities limited to strength, conditioning and physical rehab only, and won't begin on-field workouts until next week.
"Right now, we're just focusing on us and everybody getting familiar with each other right now. Once everybody starts to pick up on the offense and get familiar with who we have in the building, then we'll focus more on the other teams," Crowder said. "But right now, we're more so focused on us and us getting better, so that's kind of where we're at with that."
See the Jets Working Out on the Field During of the Offseason Program
The Jets found out Wednesday night that they'll visit the Patriots in Week 3 and finish up their season series against the Pats on Monday Night Football in Week 7. Veteran nose tackle Steve McLendon, who re-signed in the offseason, has never altered his ultimate drive of hoisting the Lombardi Trophy.
"They have been the champions, they have won the division. That's what we want to be, but if we focus on them — we'll lose focus on what our big goal is," McLendon said. "But me, personally? My one goal is to win a championship no matter how, when or where. Since I'm here right now, that's my singular focus goal is to do everything in my power to help motivate, to help lead and play/perform at an extremely high level to help this team to do something special this year."
One of the Jets' core special teams performers in 2019 will be wide receiver Josh Bellamy, who spent the 2015 season in Chicago when Gase was the Bears' OC. And he knows exactly what the Green & White's new leader is all about.
"He's going to build a culture of everybody just being a dawg, having that type of mentality and being aggressive," Bellamy said. "He's ready to win and we all want to win."
Crowder, one of the league's most explosive slot targets, has already seen Gase's fire since the start of the offseason program.
"I would say he's very energetic, pumped up, hyped type of coach. We're going through installs and everything and everyone is trying to obviously get the offense down," he said. "It doesn't seem too complicated. For me, it's just learning the verbiage. It's a bit different. But I like him from what I've seen, just me being here in this short amount of time. I'm just looking forward to growing our relationship, player-coach relationship and just trying to go out there and do what I can within the offense."