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Conference call: New York Jets


New York Jets coach Rex Ryan led the Baltimore Ravens' vaunted 3-4 defense from 2005-08.

First-year New York Jets coach Rex Ryan spoke to the Houston media on Wednesday about his team's upcoming matchup with the Texans at Reliant Stadium.

Jets head coach Rex Ryan
(on if he has any jitters going into his first game as a head coach) "It is different, but you know, I don't think it's that I have any jitters or nerves or anything. I think it's more of excitement, like I'm looking forward to this football team and the playing for real. It's almost like a little chip on the shoulder. We're not supposed to be that good. We're supposed to finish, by the so called experts, bottom of our division and all of that stuff. But the great thing is, we get to prove it. So we're going to be on that field, and on Sunday, the Texans are going to face a good football team. I think they're an outstanding team, but they're going to face one, too. And that's my opinion; we're going to find out. But I think this is a group that has a lot of talent. I think we've got an outstanding coaching staff, and I can't wait. It's just an excitement. I'm really excited to get this first one in. Unfortunately, we're playing at Houston. This team's an outstanding team at home. Their fans really get behind their team and all that, but it's not going to be easy for them, I can tell you that much."

(on if it will be harder on a rookie coach or a rookie quarterback) "It might be hard on both of us, but it's going to be hard on the Texans, too."

(on QB Mark Sanchez being his guy) "Yes, he is. I think he's going to be an outstanding quarterback. He's got great leadership. He's got all the intangibles. He's confident, he's poised. He's got all the physical talent that you look for in a quarterback. Shoot, if he's himself and just plays to get out there and have some fun just like you have all your life, I think he's going to be successful. He doesn't have to go out and, 'Don't do this, don't do that.' Hey, just play the position and have fun and I think that things will happen."

(on running the football and not putting it all on Sanchez's back) "No, absolutely. We have a team that we've got a couple of outstanding running backs, we've got a veteran offensive line that is one of the best offensive lines in the league. That's a recipe for success, I think, on offense, whether you have a veteran quarterback or a rookie quarterback. So I feel confident in that group."

{QUOTE}(on how difficult it was to shoehorn his Ravens' defensive scheme with different people in New York) "Well, I think we were built for it. This group is built to run a very similar style that we did in Baltimore. So I think it's going to be a lot of fun to watch. We have some talented guys here. Darrelle Revis, I think, is one of the best corners in football. Kris Jenkins, an outstanding nose tackle. And that combination of David Harris and Bart Scott on the inside is very good."

(on if the way his Ravens' defense played at Reliant Stadium last season gives him confidence with the Jets) "Well, we thought we did OK, but I think I thought that the Texans did good against us. They moved the ball well. We made a couple of plays in the red zone that might've really affected the outcome of that game, but I thought the Texans did a good job offensively against us. But again, we're going to be confident no matter where we play. I know statistics say that the Texans are about as good a team as you get at home. They averaged close to 30 points a game over the last two years. That 12-4 record at home speaks for itself. And then you look at this offense was third in the NFL in offense last year. So with everybody back, the quarterback healthy, and you've got the best receiver in the game, Andre Johnson, and it's funny because he hasn't necessarily been on the national stage, but everybody knows it. What a tremendous talent he is. It's going to be a great challenge for our defense, but it's one that I think our guys, we're certainly getting ready for it. We know it's going to be a big challenge, but we also think it's going to be a big challenge for Houston as well."

(on the challenges presented by the Texans' defense) "Certainly, when you think of the Texans on defense, you think of two guys in particular: Mario Williams, and, of course, the great linebacker, DeMeco Ryans. Those are two huge pieces to the puzzle over there. Then, getting (Dunta) Robinson back as well for this game. They definitely have some talent here on defense, and some of the best players in the NFL in those two young men for sure."

(on whether or not the Texans play defense differently in 2009) "Well, I'm sure they're going to show a lot of different things when they get to the regular season, just like we will, that you haven't necessarily seen in preseason. But I think the big thing is that they're running around, they're competing, they're flying around all over the place, and I think they have a chance to be good on defense. But again, our offense is built a certain way. We think we can run the football, so we're going to find out."

(on thinking they can run the football) "On anybody. That's the thing. It's not, 'Well, now we have this opponent.' Last year, this was one of the best running teams in the league, the Jets. It's because of our offensive line. That's obviously where it's going to start. We have a rookie quarterback, so we need to be able to run the football."

(on if his father Buddy Ryan gave him specific head coaching advice) "No, not really. I've got to be my own person, and the comparison to my dad is great. I appreciate that so much because I have so much respect for my dad. But I'm my own man, and a couple things that I know for sure is you gotta be yourself to be successful. And I wanted to surround myself with the best group of guys that I could, whether that's coaching staff, whether it's players…I feel great about the people we have in our organization, and that's why I think I'll be successful and the team will be successful."

(on if he likes coaching in New York) "It's been great so far. I know there's certain challenges there. Probably three times as many media people, but I'm kind of used to it now. Like a normal press conference is like, 'Who is this for? We're just playing football.'"

(on his comfort level with the New York media) "I'm going to be myself. We're letting our team be themselves. It's not, 'Let's say this' or 'Let's say that.' We know that we don't line up a hundred percent (on our opinions). If I say something that's maybe different than our quarterback or our receiver, at the end of the day, I'd rather just be truthful. We have a team that I'm certainly proud of and we have great people in our locker room. Maybe we're a little different than the standard operating procedure for some teams, but we think we'll be successful this way."

(on whether or not the Texans have to run the ball since their passing game is so effective) "You run the ball to win. That's a huge ingredient for success throughout this league. Statistics are one thing. You can throw the ball every down and be a top-five offense, but to win in this league, I think you have to run the football and be able to stop the run on defense."

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