Thursday Player Interviews

040309_clemens_ratliff_ainge_320.jpg


Transcripts of selected Q&As with Jets players during locker room media availability Thursday morning:   

RB/KR LEON WASHINGTON

On what it's like being back at the Jets facility…

It's been good so far. We have been getting a little work in, working out, trying to get ourselves back in football shape before minicamps come up. We are trying to build our camaraderie with all the new guys and the guys that we have here already. We are trying to have that team thing going by the time the season starts.

On Kellen Clemens and Brett Ratliff…

Both those guys are really hard-working on and off the field and the way those guys approach each play has been tremendous. They like to get a lot of work in on the field. Clemens is a guy who has been here before and who has started eight games. Obviously, he has the experience. Ratliff is a guy who is highly talented and played really well in the preseason.

We look forward to those guys battling it out in the preseason and whoever is the starter, we will support that guy throughout the year.

On having Rex Ryan as the new head coach…

It's been great. He displays that new word "swagger." The confidence that he has brought from Baltimore should be infectious throughout the entire team. I am looking forward to going out onto the football field being confident about what we do and how we do it.

WR DAVID CLOWNEY

On playing with Kellen Clemens and Brett Ratliff…

I am looking forward to playing with anybody that is at that starting position. We have two great guys between Brett and Kellen. They are both great quarterbacks. I have been able to play with both of them in a game. They are going to compete for it and hopefully it's a fair trade where everything works out for the best of both of them. Whoever wins, wins.

On the Jay Cutler trade to Chicago…

I really don't worry about stuff outside of the locker room, the whole stuff with Cutler. I don't pay any attention to it. If he would have been here, he would have been here. He's not, so he's not. My main objective is to make sure I go out there and do everything I can do to help the team. The same with Kellen and Brett — I am pretty sure they weren't worried about it either. They're doing everything they can to get better to try to win the starting job at quarterback.

QB KELLEN CLEMENS

On whether the Cutler situation felt like the Favre situation…

If it was a year ago, it probably would have felt similar, but I had gone through it and kind of realized what it really is in retrospect. The Jets made contact and said "What's your pricetag?" and that was the end of it. I wasn't overly concerned because it does no good to worry about it. You focus on the things you can control and go from there.

On where he feels he is right now as opposed to last year…

I'm in a good place right now. I'm ready for this, for the minicamp. It's a progression. I think from this point last year, my work has been the same, but I think my work has been smarter because I am a year older; I am a year smarter in the system. We'll be in a good spot to put a good showing on for minicamp. We'll just hopefully continue to progress through OTAs and into training camp.

On what he took from last season…

It was really great for me to back away from all that happened and see Brett [Favre] go through it and how he handled it. It was a very unique opportunity that I don't think a lot of guys get. Two years ago I started, had a chance to go through live bullets, then to actually step back, although it was difficult, to step back and try to take advantage of an opportunity to see it from the outside again. Having been there, it gave me a lot of perspective going into this year.

QB BRETT RATLIFF

On if it was a vote of confidence from the Jets by not trading for Jay Cutler…

Yes, maybe a little bit, you can see it like that. But like I've said, I wasn't too worried about it. If he did come here, great, if he didn't, it's the same. I am just excited about the opportunity that I have with Kellen to compete against each other and battle for the starting job.

On what he is most looking forward to in the upcoming season…

Just the opportunity to achieve my dream and my goals. My goal has always been to be a starting quarterback in this league and I have that opportunity right now. I am going to try to make the most of it, have fun with it, continue to work hard and be who I am.

On what the Jets have to do to succeed this season…

I think we have to be ourselves. We can't be anybody we are not. We have to play to our strengths, work on our weaknesses and be the best team we can.

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.

Related Content

Advertising