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Sanchez Interview


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Sanchez talks contract, Holmes, criticism

March, 10, 2012

Mar 10

1:05

AM ET

By Rich Cimini

Shortly before 11 p.m. Friday night, Mark Sanchez joined a conference call with reporters to discuss his contract extension -- his first contact with the media since the end of the season. Here are excerpts:

Sanchez: "It meant the world to me to be drafted to New York and play and have the opportunity to play these past three years. (To play) in one of the greatest cities in the country and have the success we had, especially in those first two years, was so much fun to be a part of. So to find out I can come back for three more years means the world to me. I'm absolutely pleased to be a Jet. My family is ecstatic, and now it's time to get to work and get back at it, and that's what I've been doing these past few weeks, and I apologize for not being available like I usually am, but there were negotiations going on and things going on that I couldn't really talk about yet."

Q: On how he dealt with the Jets looking into Peyton Manning:

Sanchez: "You know, honestly, I completely understand ... The team has its obligation to consider all of its options. I'm excited that the Jets believe in me and that I was the guy they want to move forward with in the future. You know, I really didn't think too much into it. I know there's 15 to 20-plus other teams that have thought the same thing, and they have starting quarterbacks from last year who might get upset about that. But honestly, I was thrilled that our negotiations were going on, and I knew if things played out the right way that I'd be their guy just like I was in the beginning, and that means the world to me."

Q: On what this offseason has been like for him with the criticism:

Sanchez: "Well, I think it doesn't really bother me at all. I just know that that's a part of this position, especially in New York City ... If anything, that fuels me. It gets me excited about this next year, and I think, if anything, this past year I learned more than my first two years combined about how to handle adversity and things I could have done better, whether it's on or off the field."

Q: On if he felt insulted the Jets were looking at Manning:

Sanchez: "Not at all. I knew that's a part of Mr. Tannenbaum's job, to look into every viable option, whether it's at offensive line or running back, receiver, any defensive position. It's something they have to do. But the best part about it is, they chose to stick with me. I'm going to be the starting quarterback for the next few years here, and that's exciting. It gives the team just a reminder that I'm the leader of this team, and I'm excited to get back, and I'm going to be working my tail off these next few months to become the best possible starting quarterback that this franchise can have."

Q: On if he met with Santonio Holmes this offseason:

Sanchez: "Sure, sure. We've been in contact really this whole offseason, and I think a bigger deal was made out of that than needed to be. But that's okay. With neither of us commenting on it, I think it got bigger. We've kind of laughed that off at this point now, weeks ago, but I've been down to see him, and I'll get into more of that stuff (later)."

Q: On meeting with Chad Pennington in Florida:

Sanchez: "He was open to having me come down and meet with him, and after quite a few meetings, I don't know if there's anybody (better) ... It was great perspective to hear. And really get a chance to talk with him about different situations in a ballgame and then we got into more specific stuff. Like I said, I'll talk about more of that stuff (later), but Chad was open to the thought of me coming down and talking to him, so I owe him a lot of gratitude because he was great."

Q: On critics saying he is coddled:

Sanchez: "When people say I'm coddled, I wish they could just sit in a meeting after I haven't played my best or I threw a few interceptions because Coach Cavanaugh and Coach Schottenheimer and even Rex at times, there's nothing close to coddling going on in there. At times, it's pretty rough."

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How very nice of Greta Garbo here to crawl out from under his emo rock and address the media like a real leader would. I mean, sure, it took the occasion of his boss openly trying to replace him only to reverse field and hand him $58 mil to get him to the microphone, but whatever. At least the leader of the franchise felt compelled to pull his face out of his tear-stained pillow long enough to tout the company line.

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How very nice of Greta Garbo here to crawl out from under his emo rock and address the media like a real leader would. I mean, sure, it took the occasion of his boss openly trying to replace him only to reverse field and hand him $58 mil to get him to the microphone, but whatever. At least the leader of the franchise felt compelled to pull his face out of his tear-stained pillow long enough to tout the company line.

I feel that you and I are going to get along nicely for the next couple of years.

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Q: On critics saying he is coddled:

Sanchez: "When people say I'm coddled, I wish they could just sit in a meeting after I haven't played my best or I threw a few interceptions because Coach Cavanaugh and Coach Schottenheimer and even Rex at times, there's nothing close to coddling going on in there. At times, it's pretty rough."

Yeah. I'm sure it went something like, "Dammit if you don't start improving I'll put in...uh...crap we have no one else. Um, do better and don't crap-pass us out of the playoffs or you'll only get another minimum $20-30M guaranteed over the next couple of years."

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