Head Coach Robert Saleh, 9.20

[Please click picture for link to the video]


Opening statement…

Good morning. Injuries real quick, (Greg) Zuerlein won’t practice today, Tony Adams won’t practice today, Duane Brown, normal, he won’t practice today, (Mekhi) Becton, the same. John Franklin-Myers won’t practice today, and then Michael Carter, Quincy (Williams) and Breece (Hall) are limited.


Brian Costello, New York Post: What’s up with JFM (John Franklin-Myers)?

He’s dealing with a hip, but he should be good to go for the game. When you look at all the defensive guys with having played almost 90 plays, we’re just trying to take it easy on that side of the ball a little bit.


Al Iannazzone, Newsday: What’s your expectation for Quincy (Williams)? You said he looked pretty good the other day. 

He should be fine. He should be fine.


Rich Cimini, ESPN.com: Mekhi (Becton), is that his knee?

It’s the same thing, so he’s on a program, so he’s always going to show up as limited, but it’s the same program.


Antwan Staley, New York Daily News: What do you see from this Patriots team?

Same, same that you always see, very disciplined football team. Offensively speaking, they’re doing a really nice job of methodically moving the ball and playing good, sound ahead of the chains football, if you will, getting the ball in and out of the quarterbacks hands very quickly, they’re effective in the run game, so they’re doing a really nice job. They’ve played two really good defenses and felt like they were able to move the ball very well and then defensively, it’s the same, they’re very, very disciplined in coverage, they’re big upfront, they play their style of football and they play it well.


Brian Costello, New York Post: Robert, the organization has lost 14 times in a row to the Patriots, only four of those on your ledger, but that has a lot of meaning to your fans. I’m just curious, does that resonate at all with the team, with you, inside the building?

We’re always trying to win every game, not only for us and this organization, but for the fans and everybody. Games are always so important to, especially Jets nation, but we got to focus on the moment, I get what happened in the past, but looking at the past and dwelling on the past and what could have been is just taking away from what we can do now, and what we can do now is prepare to be the best we can and focus on us and how we need to execute to be able to put our best foot forward on Sunday. That’s really where the focus has to be. Yes, it’s New England and it’s a division game and the past is the past, but all our focus is on today, trying to be our best version of ourselves, so we can find a way to get this one on Sunday.


Rich Cimini, ESPN.com: Does that weigh on you at all as a coach, that streak? I mean it’s (Bill) Belichick, it’s an archrival.

No, no. No one likes losing, but that’s part of our profession and that you got to be able to move on and focus on the moment. Like if you’re allowing things that you no longer have control over to weigh on you, then you’re probably not putting your best foot forward to try to end all the issues that are weighing on you. If that makes sense. But no, I get it, we acknowledge it, but at the same time, it doesn’t define this group today, with the group that we have, 2023 Jets.


Al Iannazzone, Newsday: Do you think it’s the same for Zach (Wilson), because he’s obviously having issues against that team? Like you have to make sure it’s not in his head?

It should be for everybody. What happened in the past, happened in the past, that’s why we learn from it, that’s why we watch the tape, that’s why we exhaust ourselves to try to figure out how we can do things better, what can we change, what can we do better, and all that, and how can we be more efficient, but you can’t play scared, you can’t play by thinking about things that happened in the past. You got to focus on the moment, and that’s where all of our attention needs to be, on how we can execute to the best of our ability, doing our job to the best of our ability and whatever happens, happens.


Antwan Staley, New York Daily News: Since you’ve been here, you talked about closing the gap in the AFC East, where do you feel like your team is at this point? 

I feel like we have, I still think we’ve got a very damn good football team. I know last week didn’t go the way we wanted to, but we’ve played some tough division games over the past, especially last year, and I we only got two of them, but every single one of those games went down to the wire and we have a chance to take a step forward, division games like we’ve always said that ‘the quickest path to the playoffs is to win your division.’ Now, we haven’t obviously even come close to that around here, but the focus is on making sure that we put our best foot forward, like I said, and whatever happens, happens. Hopefully that answered your question.


Rich Cimini, ESPN.com: Are you considering any offensive line changes? 

No, no, not right now. Like I said, the same group ran for 180 yards against Buffalo, so I said what happened on Sunday and it is what it is, it just wasn’t our best day coaching, playing, executing, all of it. And it’s just turning the page over and just trying to figure out how we can get back on track.


Tom Rock, Newsday: Robert, when you were asked about the Patriots before you said a lot of same, same, same, right? So what’s changed with the Jets that makes you believe that you can open up on them this time? 

That’s a good question. I’ll keep a lot of that between me and the team, but it comes down to executing against a team like New England, making sure that you don’t screw yourself up and turning the ball over, always taking care of the ball, winning the kicking game, being efficient, winning situational football. That is what it always comes down to, especially when you play New England, so for us, without talking about what changes, execution is always going to be key.


Joe Mauceri, WPIX: Robert, you mentioned on staying in the moment, but can a losing streak like this make a team focus on the moment, even more than they might otherwise because that’s behind them and make them want to win more?

I don’t know if 90% of the locker room was in there for maybe two of these losses, I guess that’s the point I’m trying to make, it’s acknowledged, it’s appreciated, we understand, but we’ve got to move on. This is the 2023 Jets, and the focus is on today and finding ways to continue to get better, so we can put our best foot forward on Sunday, and that’s all you can focus on.


Jared Schwartz, New York Post: Robert, Mecole Hardman (Jr.) just has one catch the first two game. Just how do him and some of these new receivers going?

More plays on offense, converting third downs, getting off the field on defense, just creating opportunities to get to reach deeper in the bag of play call.


Zach Rosenblatt, The Athletic: I think Duane Brown got a lot of flack for that last game because he was the one who was blocking (Micah) Parsons a lot of the time. How do you feel like these first two weeks have gone for Duane?

I think he’s fine, Micah (Parsons) is a hell of a football player. Like I said, the one sack that he allowed was a screenplay, so I don’t look at that as something that’s, you know, he’s setting up for a screen. When I look at the overall landscape of it all, could he have been better? Yeah, we all could have been better, but I thought he did very well against Buffalo and it’s just, get back on track and just keep grinding.


Steve Serby, New York Post: Robert, what disappointed you most about the defense on Sunday?

Well for me, it’s just our situational football with regards to third down. Teams are going to  move the ball, we had opportunities like I said, from a chance to get the ball in the interception, a couple of third down opportunities that we could have got off, had chances to hold them the three points on that first drive, but didn’t quite get it done, had a chance to hold them to three points after we scored that touchdown, didn’t get it done. Otherwise, there was a bunch of field goals afterwards, but there’s just a lot of third down opportunities that we felt like we could have been better at, both as coaches and as players. Like I said, we just didn’t get it done.


Brian Costello, New York Post: Robert, (Jeremy) Ruckert is the guy who had a good offseason, Buffalo threw some really good blocks. He only played five snaps on Sunday, would he be someone that can have a bigger role to get this running game going?

Yeah, we acknowledge (Jeremy) Ruckert needs to get on the field a little bit more. He stands for all the right stuff, that’s the intent. We’ll see how it works out, but he’s going to continue to get better, he’ll find his way into the offense.


Steve Serby, New York Post: How do you gauge the emotional state of your team after a loss like that?

Losing stinks, but they’re fine, these young men are resilient, their meetings were good, everyone was locked in, walk through just now was really good. A lot of upbeat personalities and I think practice will be even better, so like I said, in this League, in life, you’re going to lose, you’re going to get knocked down, and you got to pick yourself up, you got to dust off and you got to get ready to roll again. Like I said, I think I said at the press conference after the game, it’s not the first time or the last time that we’re going to lose a football game, but we trust that if we keep picking ourselves up and prepare the way we need to, we’ll win more often than not.


Zach Rosenblatt, The Athletic: Where’s Breece at in his like development of getting more touches as the season goes along and more snaps or whatever, I know you call it a pitch count?

He’s coming along. Like I said, I talked about that one, too. The intent is we want to at least get to his pitch count, whatever that is, but he’s progressing really well, his body looks good, he’s fresh, so he’s definitely moving in the right direction.


Brian Costello, New York Post: Did you ask the League for any clarification on the JFM penalty?

Yeah, I’m waiting. I’m supposed to have a call with them at 2 p.m.


Brian Costello, New York Post: As a coach, what do you tell your defensive lineman?

I don’t know how to coach anything that, there’s nothing I can coach to make that differently becausehe got pulled down, his face still hit the hip, above the knee, which is still legal, so everything about it was legal.