Rex's Thursday News Conference

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Transcript of Jets head coach Rex Ryan's news conference following Thursday's midday practice:

We'll go over injuries first off. [Donald] Strickland and Damien Woody did not practice. Woody's got a foot injury and Strickland still has the ankle. Limited today was Kerry Rhodes with a knee, Lito Sheppard with a quad and Jerricho [Cotchery] has a little bit of a hamstring, so he was limited at practice. Guys that were full but are on the list: Larry Izzo — hamstring, Jim Leonhard — knee and Bryan Thomas — wrist. But everybody's ready to go.

Today, the big story, we had Floyd Mayweather out there, pound-for-pound. I brought him in to give me some pointers. So he was out there. You always just imagine guys being really big. Then you realize that that guy can punch you in the face 20 times before you ever even thought about punching him. It was kind of an interesting deal. When you look at him, you're like 'Oh please. I'll whip that dude.' Then he's like bam and you wake up missing. But it was good to see him. I like when you get champions, great guys in the sports and entertainment field. I like when they come to practice. It's neat. Plus he's a fan of contact sports. Imagine that. He loves football. Loves watching football so that's kind of neat. I was thinking to myself, he doesn't get hit very often so what does he know about contact? It was good to see him out there.

On why he brought Floyd Mayweather to practice today…

We knew he was going to be in the area. We invited him out and he took us up on it. It was great to see pound-for-pound the best fighter in the world. It was kind of neat to have him come out and watch practice. Like I said, he's a fan of football. He did say that these are his favorite colors, the green and white. Money Mayweather. So we're like "All right, that's great."

On if Mayweather spoke to the team…

Yes. He spoke to the team after practice. He knows some of the guys. He's played basketball with them and he's seen a lot of the guys around.

On Mayweather's message to the team…

His message was he enjoys the way we play, our style of play. He's got us in the top five teams in the league. I was kidding him about Jay Feely. I said, "Jay what were you saying about him?" Jay was like "Oh, yeah" and his eyes were big. He did have a message for Feely. He said, "Don't be missing any field goals." It was just good to get him out there and I think they see that he's a fan of football. Everybody's obviously a fan of his and enjoys watching him perform. It's kind of neat that here's a guy in another sport altogether, but he enjoys football and enjoys watching the Jets play. It was great to have him out here.

On Braylon Edwards' first day at practice…

He looked tall. He's big, fast. He's everything. He had one drop today so I'm sure we'll focus on that. He caught about 50 balls and dropped one. It was funny because right when he did drop one, I was like "Oh, boy."

Like I said even before, he's going to drop some passes, he's human just like anybody else, but I don't think we need to be overly concerned if he drops a ball. He's way ahead of where I even thought he'd be. It's great to see. He knows the formations already, the verbiage of that. So he's at least going to be able to get lined up. We're going to have a little system in place where we'll tell him what the routes are. He's way ahead of the game. He's familiar already with a lot of things that we do.

On if Edwards will get more playing time with Jerricho Cotchery being limited at practice today…

On Monday night, he's going to start. With Cotchery, he was just limited at practice. We expect Jerricho, obviously, to play. We do plan on Braylon starting on Monday.

On if he saw a different feel to the team today with Edwards out there…

Yes. You've got a great big guy like I said. I go, "Did we sign a defensive end or is that a wide-out?" He's at least 6'3", probably 220 or 215. He looks big. He's in shape, but that's just a big man. So it was kind of fun seeing him out there. Guys were getting after him and challenging him. He had a good practice.

On if he gets excited when thinking of the possible mismatches now that he has Edwards on his team…

Yes. I think so. If you're going to put nine guys down there or eight guys down there, then we have a chance just to run Cotchery and him straight down the field. We've got one-on-one matchups and we like them on both sides. That's the great thing. You can't just lean the safety one way because the other guy will beat you. So I like those matchups. We pride ourselves on being a running football team. Be able to do both, but we pride ourselves on being able to run the football. I think this is only going to help us.

On having Calvin Pace back and Edwards join the team…

Calvin is a tremendous player. We saw that in preseason. He might have played better than anybody in preseason. That's really exciting to be able to get Calvin back and to add already to what we have on defense. I think we had a strong start on defense. Guys are confident like we thought we would be, but adding Calvin just stirs it up even more.

On if Lito Sheppard will be able to play…

He was limited today so he was practicing. I'm not positive that he'll play for sure. I'm positive he practiced today. It wasn't an illusion, I don't think. It was good to see him out there and he's moving around. We're taking him in and out of drills so he's not getting every rep. But he is definitely out there. He's moving pretty well.

On what a team does on short notice to get a new guy ready to play in a game…

Normally when you just add a player, you give him three or four plays. But Braylon is way ahead of that. He's already got the formations down and he's got quite a few of the plays down. We're going to come up with some type of system to where if Henry Ellard has to signal it in or we have to tag a call, then we will. We want him out there. That's why we have him. There are very few trades that really happen during the course of the regular season. This was one that we felt Braylon could come in here and be a major contributor to us immediately. Let's put him out there and see what he can do.

On taking the risk of Edwards making a few mistakes…

Yes. There's that possibility. We're going to try to limit that possibility as much as possible. We already have a great deal of confidence in his knowledge already.

On how Edwards helps the run game…

We'll probably see more two safety looks. If you only have the one safety in the middle of the field, it really limits what you can do coverage wise. A lot of times, basically, that's manning you up on the outside. I like our chances with Jerricho and Braylon out there and Dustin [Keller] through the inside. We have some pretty good matchups now. We're going to be tough to defend. If you just want to play center field, I like our guys on the outside.

On how to defend the Wildcat offense against Miami…

Number one, you've got to do a great job at tackling. You've got to swarm the ball carrier. You've got to play with great technique up front and you've got to be them to the punch. You can't sit back there and wait. You've got to do what we do, which is attack the line of scrimmage, play great technique, swarm the football and get them on the ground. That's going to be critical. He [Ronnie Brown]'s the best back in the league. This guy can run anything. If you want to play I-formation or any scheme, this guy would be a great back. The fact that he's back there in the Wildcat he's a special player back there.

On if it makes it more difficult to prepare for the Wildcat because Miami adds new wrinkles every week…

You have to be sound in what you do against them. If you're not, they'll expose you. We'll be sound in what we do. I think we'll be aggressive like we always are and we'll see. I know it's going to be a great challenge. Everybody gets tired, but I know it's going to challenge for us. We're going to be a challenge for them also.

On if Darrelle Revis will be primarily defending Ted Ginn…

We'll see. Really haven't looked at it. He wasn't in there for a big chunk of the game last week, so we'll match him up if we think that's the right move or we'll just let him play right or left corner depending on who's in there with him. But he's a guy that if some particular receiver is giving us problems during the course of the game, we can always put Revis on him and they'll have to go somewhere else.

On speaking his mind…

We're coaching a game. Do we understand how fortunate we are? To take yourself so seriously, that's not who I am. I'm blessed to be in this position. Everybody in this league is blessed to be in this league. But I'm not operating on somebody thank goodness. We're coaching or we're playing. I understand it's important and we've got a job to do, but at the end of the day, I like to have fun with it. That's part of the great thing about this profession is that you're around different people. You're around young players, young guys. I just like to have fun. I think that's what it is.

It's still a game. I know it's a multimillion dollar business and I understand that. There's a responsibility with that, but it's also fun. Just like anything else, these guys are going to want to kick our butts and we're going to want to kick their butts. Simple as that. We want to win. They want to win. Sometimes when somebody is kidding with you and you're kidding back with them that's fun. Those are things that at the end of the day you probably laugh about it when you're walking off the field.

Now, if they are going to want have a little extra trying to beat us for comments that they don't like, that's fine. Guess what? It's the same thing coming back at you. We want to beat them, too. As bad as they want to beat us, we want to beat them the same way. Again, I love my brother [Rob Ryan], but trust me, I'm trying to kill him if we play him. That's just the way it is. The competiveness in you, it really makes no difference if somebody talks or doesn't talk. Sometimes, I think, guys take themselves too seriously.

On if he got trash-talking tips from Mayweather…

No. He just told me to keep my chin down, try to slip some punches and come back with a jab. That's my strategy, keep my chin down there and then stick a jab back out. He did say always throw the jab first, so I said 'Ok. Good advice.' I don't think he liked my movement skills though.

On what he expects from Mark Sanchez on Monday night…

Turn it loose. Have fun. Play quarterback and rely on your teammates. He's smart. He's studying. He's doing all those types of things, but then game time ought to be fun. That's what this game ought to be about. Obviously, we'll want to protect the football. I mean, protect the football. Protect the football. Protect the football. Protect the football. No question we want to do that. Give ourselves a chance to win. He'll play better if he's having fun and he's staying loose. He'll play better and that's what we want him to do.

On if Sanchez is relishing this week's game to get past the loss last week…

Sure. I think our whole football team is. Nobody likes to lose. Everybody wants another shot at it so to speak. We never played our best. Giving credit to New Orleans, they deserve the win, but that wasn't our best effort. To me, we're ready for this game. These games count basically a game and a half. They're in your own division. There's no hiding it. We know it. That's why we know this is an important game and a huge game for us.

On if Woody and Strickland will play Monday…

I'm not so sure about Strickland. I keep wanting him to come along and think he's going to come along. But it seems to be a slow process. We're not saying he's out definitely right now, but I'd like to see him practice. Damien, I feel a little better about.

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