Transcript of Jets QB Brett Favre's news conference before Wednesday's midday practice:
On what the Jets need to do to improve…
Honestly, I don't know what people are saying, reading, writing, or what's on TV, but it's pretty simple, it really is. We've lost the last two games. We haven't played our best football. It comes down to little things, which always lead to big things. I don't think San Francisco played any harder than us. They may have played a little faster. I don't think they wanted it any more than we did.
You'll hear coaches and players at times say that it's not about them, it's about us. I think in this case that's the truth. As I said after the game, I give the 49ers credit. I give Denver credit. They beat us. They played well. We didn't play as well as we could have.In the games, you think of really the two that stick out, Tennessee and New England, we played pretty well, we did. New England fought back and made it a close game. At least offensively speaking, we played about as good as we could play. We had a big kickoff return that added to our scoring.
We had one of those the other day that got called back, but it got called back. We didn't convert on third downs like we had been doing. The week before against Denver, we didn't convert in the red zone like we had been doing. You can point to a lot of things. We have been good on third downs. We have been good in the red zone. We haven't been hurting ourselves in the kicking game, and those are the things that got us.
On assessing his decision to play here if the Jets don't make the playoffs…
I haven't even thought about it. I expect us to make the playoffs. I didn't expect us to lose the last two games, but I don't know if too many people expected us to win five straight — maybe our team did. If we're able to win five straight and accept that, then we have to be willing to deal with these two games that we've lost and figure out a way to turn it around.
The bottom line is we're 8-5 and we're tied for the division. There are several divisions out there that are similar to ours, in that it's up in the air. There are three games left. We can't worry about the remaining two. We have to worry about this one. It will be tough, obviously, especially based on the way that we've played the last two weeks.
I expect us to make the playoffs. I would hope that every guy in the locker room feels the same way. Why think any differently? Whatever happens after that, I'll deal with that when it comes.
On if the mistakes on video are correctable…
It's all correctable. We're a pretty simple offense, I think. There are a lot of simple offenses out there. To me, being complicated probably does more harm than good. What we've done in the last two weeks really hasn't been, as far as play-calling, any different than the five games that we got on the hot streak. We just didn't execute.
People want to say "Well, they figured out the short passing game" or "You guys can't throw deep." No one has figured out anything. It's a matter of execution.
The opening drive of the game the other day, I know Dustin [Keller] wishes he had that back. He catches that ball, then maybe we go down and score. Maybe it's a different ball game. Maybe I throw the ball more accurately on other plays, make a different read, or a guy makes a fantastic catch like Jerricho [Cotchery] did against New England, maybe that's the difference. Who knows? You watch the film, it's all correctable.
On aspects of the game he would personally like to execute better…
I don't think there's any one part of my game that shouldn't get better. That goes from day one, not just here but from the first time I ever played football. I'm never content with the way I play. I'm always looking for an edge. I think as you get older you're always looking for an edge. Not that you're trying to outsmart the other team, you're just trying to use your experience.
I think for the most part this year that has helped. I think some of the things that I have brought here have shown up at times. I think more than anything for me right now is to continue to get on the same page with our guys, which is constantly a work in progress. I think it's that way regardless of where you're playing, it's based on who you're playing — you're playing a Cover-2 team, a Cover-3 team, a man-to-man team, so each route is different. The same route this week may be different next week based on who we're playing.
A perfect example is I threw a deep ball to Jerricho early in the game last week down the middle. You watch the end zone film of it and it was so close. He ran a really good route, I made a really good throw, but we didn't mesh. I should have flattened it probably a little bit, maybe he could have gotten a little bit of separation away from the guy. But he ran exactly like we had talked about. I threw it exactly where I wanted to.
That's a play you don't practice that often. I can throw a slant to Jerricho in my sleep. I can throw a slant to L.C. [Laveranues Coles] in my sleep. There are certain plays that you have to study more on film. That's where maybe I go back and watch last year's film and see how Jerricho ran those routes. Those are things that I do. Now, we may not run that route again. I don't know. That's probably, more than anything, what I have to continue to get better at.
On the most important points of emphasis needed to be successful in December…
To me, the worst thing that can happen for me and for this team is to all of a sudden hit the panic button and want to change, or believe in what maybe people are saying about us, which I'm sure is not good. Once again, I haven't read anything. I don't see why we would deserve a lot of good things right now. Three weeks ago we were the toast of the town.
Do what we've been doing: play hard, play fast and believe in what we're doing. I'm a firm believer in three weeks and out, if that's not good enough, I can go home — yes, I'll be upset, but I can go home with my head held high and say we did all we could do.
We're in first place. I think that's pretty good. It could be better, but I think it's pretty good. We control our own destiny. If we're not good enough these next three weeks and if we just get outplayed, then we get outplayed. That's something we can't control. That remains to be seen. I think we're a pretty good football team. I think we've proven that this year, so I don't think we need to change anything. I just think we need to continue doing what we're doing.
It's tougher in December. It's tougher for a lot of reasons. I think the great thing about this team is we have a lot of veteran leadership with a lot of experience. The downside of that, sometimes, is that guys can get a little beaten down and worn down. Everyone practices, everyone participates and everyone studies. So why change? We just have to find a way to get it done.
On the indications of when a team should "hit the panic button"…
I think the best way for me to explain it would be that I probably would get more concerned or have gotten more concerned, not only this year, and probably not a lot this year, when things were going well than where we are right now. I'd much rather have won every game we played in this year, believe me.
It's funny, when things are going well, and I've played a long time, you start kind of forgetting the things that got you there. I think we all know what I'm talking about, which sort of cracks me up. When things kind of go like they've gone the last two weeks, then all of a sudden, everyone's "We have to tighten it up." Yes, we do. Time will tell if that's a good thing.
I think true veterans and true professionals, they get to this point for a reason. We have a lot of young guys on this team, but we also have a lot of guys who have been around, whether it be here or somewhere else. Trust in that leadership. Trust in that young talent. If guys are out of line or not practicing as hard as they can be, or whatever — but I'm not insinuating that at all, I'm just saying if that's the case and that's across the league — that's where we come in.
You don't get to watch all of our practices, but guys practice and practice with a purpose. Keep doing that and good things will come. I truly believe that. I think they've come up to this point. We've lost two games in a row. As good as it felt a few weeks back, we can get that back. It's right there in front of us again, so do what we've been doing. Maybe a little more of a sense of urgency, obviously.
There's no sense in hitting the panic button. You hit the panic button when it's over. You do what has gotten you to this point. That's been pretty good, once again. You don't ever want to look back, as an individual or as a team, and say, "Boy, if I would have just done that or if I would have done this." You can never do that. You can never get that back. One thing that you can do day in and day out is effort, energy and enthusiasm. That's something you can't coach. As long as we have that, and believe in our system — which I think every guy in here does — and once again, if we're not good enough, so be it. But I think we are.
On overcoming the Jets' perception of losing…
"Oh, there they go again, [same] old Jets." I haven't read that, but I'm assuming that's what it says [laughter]. Why wouldn't you say that? I consider it a challenge. Pardon my French, but hell, I don't know what's going to happen. I really don't. I'm aware of what has happened here in the past, for the most part, but to be quite honest, I don't care. I care about what's happening in the next three weeks. I care about what's happening this week.
In passing, sometimes I'll tell people, "You know what? Three months from now, who cares? A year from now, who cares?" It's going to be about next year. It's going to be about the draft. It's going to be about this, it's going to be about that. Ten years from now, it's not going to matter. What matters is right now.
I can't control what happened in the past here. I'm not even going to worry about it. I was a Saints fan growing up. I never quite got to wearing a bag over my head, but I was close — "Aint's fans." Every time something went wrong, "Same old thing." That was miserable. I'm sure the Jets fans probably feel the same way as I did growing up as a Saints fan. I'm not saying we're up against that. A lot of these guys don't know.
I think it's a huge challenge for us, a fun challenge. This is the position we wanted to be in. Yes, we would like to have won these last two games, but we're in a good position. Let's ride the wave and see what happens. At the end of the year, regroup and hopefully it was good enough. We still control our own destiny.
On if this is "Favre time"…
What is Favre time? Magic or whatever? [Laughter] We'll see. My intentions are to go out and win every game. My intentions are to go out and make every play a great play. I know that doesn't happen all the time and it makes you scratch your head sometimes. One thing you can bet on is I'll do whatever I can to help this team win, however that may be, through leadership, throwing, handing off, blocking or whatever. That's one thing that's a given and I can promise you today.
On having an edge because he has won a Super Bowl…
I've always looked at myself as if I'm on the field, I give you an added edge. That's not being cocky. I think every player should feel that way, whether I've won a Super Bowl or not. A lot of these guys don't even remember. I brought my Super Bowl ring for the first time on the plane the other day, just to show the guys, more or less to prove to them that I did play in a Super Bowl. [Laughter] "Hey, I didn't know you won a Super Bowl."
I don't know if it gives us an edge. It proves that I've been there. It's kind of like what you were talking about, "Oh, same old Jets." Just like that doesn't matter, the fact that I was on a winning Super Bowl team really doesn't matter. It helps, I would assume. Ty Law, he's played in a few. Coach [Eric] Mangini, he has a couple Super Bowl rings. It helps, but what matters is the guys in the room now. What kind of statement are they going to make?
On his interpretation of Laveranues Coles' conference call with San Francisco writers and if Coles is unhappy he is not getting more passes…
I wasn't on that call with him. I haven't found a receiver who is not. I haven't found one receiver that thinks, "OK, the five passes you threw to me this year were plenty." He's a competitor. His locker is right next to mine. He knows where I stand. I know where he stands. I have no problems with Laveranues at all. None.
I'm doing my best to get him the ball. He's made great plays throughout his career. He will continue to make them, probably long after I'm gone. He knows that there's no personal vendetta towards him, or towards me. Laveranues is one of those who will tell you what he feels or what he doesn't feel, without thinking. Is that a knock against him? No. That's just the way he is. That's what makes him special.
Now, should I go out this week and throw him 25 straight balls? He would say yes, I can promise you that [laughter]. But we would probably lose the game. We have to continue to do what we're doing, and he may have what some may consider a breakout game, I don't know. It was not a slap towards me at all. It doesn't bother me one bit.