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The Coordinators' Corner


The Jets' coordinators — Brian Schottenheimer (offense), Mike Pettine (defense) and Mike Westhoff (special teams) — speak with reporters every week. Here are highlights from their Thursday afternoon news conferences:    


Schottenheimer, who has been rumored over the past several weeks to be among the candidates for some head-coaching positions in the NFL, was content a day after declining the opportunity to interview for the Buffalo Bills' vacancy.

"I'm flattered. I really was," he said. "I have a lot of respect for Mr. [Ralph] Wilson, I have a lot of respect for the Bills organization. [New GM] Buddy Nix is obviously a friend of mine. We've worked together. It's not about the Buffalo Bills, it's about the New York Jets.

"How I feel about this organization, the way I see the direction of this team going under Rex, the fact that Woody [Johnson] and Mike [Tannenbaum] stood by me last year, all that stuff is stuff I took into consideration. At the end of the day, I felt really happy with my decision." 

Schottenheimer did leave open the option of listening to other opportunities that may arise at the end of the season, but reiterated that he's happy where he is. The Jets are equally happy to have him as their offensive coordinator.

"Do I want to be a head coach? Absolutely. I think it has to be the right time. I think it has to be the right situation," he said. "I come to work every day excited. I come into the meetings with the players energized. That's something that not every coach in this league has. I'm flattered that someone wants to talk to me, but again it's more about what the Jets have to offer — that's the confidence in me and all the time that's been spent."


The defensive coordinator coached against the Chargers in 2007 while he was Baltimore's LBs coach. QB Philip Rivers had a field day, going 25-for-35 for 249 yards and three touchdowns.

Pettine said the Ravens' "depth issues in the secondary" had a lot to do with Rivers' success that day, but with the Green & White he feels completely confident in the group that will go against the Chargers' deadly passing attack.

"The whole secondary will have to step up and we're looking forward to it. This is one of the top pass offenses," he said. "As good as [Darrelle] Revis has played, we know he can only play one guy. That's not only what's gotten us where we are so far this year — our depth has been outstanding."

That depth will likely include CB Donald Strickland, who's been out the last few weeks with a quadriceps injury he sustained in the Week 16 game vs. the Colts. Strickland was a full participant in practice Wednesday and Thursday.

The Chargers had the 31st-ranked running game in the NFL this season but they have quality backs in LaDainian Tomlinson and Darren Sproles. The two are still a very important part of the Bolts' offensive attack, used often in screens and elsewhere in the passing game.

"They have the best screen game in the NFL," said Pettine. "They're a balanced offense. They just haven't had to run the ball. When you look at their rushing, it's also a bit deceiving. They throw so many screens and swing routes and checkdowns that those are really runs to them."


Kicker Jay Feely was put in an unexpected position last Saturday, having to punt the ball in relief of punter Steve Weatherford. Feely had seven punts for 220 yards (31.4 gross), including three inside the 20.

The ST coordinator said Feely did "a remarkable job" considering he didn't know until just before the game that he'd have to take over the punting duties.  

To help Feely out, Brad Smith, who ran and threw for successful fakes this season, did his part to capture the attention of the Bengals' kick defenders.

"Brad did a nice job of bluffing. He made it look like we were going to fake it half the time," said Westhoff. "I think that held them, it occupied them for just a split second, let Jay get it and kick it."

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