- Associated Press - Thursday, August 22, 2013

Whatever the New York Jets spent sending players to media training earlier this week would have been better spent on tackling dummies.

Put uniforms on a few and plant `em strategically around the postgame locker room while the real-life tackling dummies hide in the showers and voila! _ no matter the question, or how many times it gets asked, the answer is always the same. Better still, most reporters won’t notice the difference, and after a few weeks, simply give up.

Reporter: “Another tough loss. What’s the mood in the locker room?”


Reporter: “This is three in a row for you guys. Isn’t it time for something to change?”


Reporter: “That’s what you said last week.”


Instead, the Jets followed the strategy every other NFL team employs according to league mandate in one form or another; namely, paying consultants or having their own PR staff teach players how to move their lips without really saying anything. For those who had trouble grasping even that simple concept, the Jets handed out flash cards with a dozen or so “bridge” phrases to get players out of tight spots.

Included are: “That’s not my area of expertise, but … Let me answer you by saying that … Another thing to remember is …” and so on.

All they do is buy the player some time. None get them off the hook because they still have to say something, which is generally where the trouble begins.

What the Jets really need are answers that cut off most lines of questioning after a loss, something they could manage as many as a dozen times this season.

The defense likely will be respectable, since coach Rex Ryan is so good on that side of the ball that he could probably cobble together a scheme using the aforementioned dummies. But scoring points is another matter altogether. The Jets still haven’t settled on a starting quarterback, the receiving corps is thin and New York’s running game will hinge on whether oft-injured Chris Ivory is good and-or durable enough to be a featured back.

So without further ado, here’s a handful of tried-and-true alternatives:

_ “We’re not stupid. We just play that way sometimes.”

Story Continues →