On the radar: Going off the radar

July, 8, 2010
7/08/10
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A player, coach or issue that should be on your radar as training camp approaches.

As fans, the natural desire is to want to hear more about your favorite team and its players as we move toward training camp.

[+] EnlargeRyan
Luc Leclerc/US PresswireRex Ryan has told his players to keep "that trophy in mind" during this quiet time before training camp.
Believe me, you don't want that.

This is quiet time in the NFL. The players have been sent home for the summer. Even the coaches and the front office are away on the only natural vacation period on the NFL calendar unless they don't make the playoffs.

The next few weeks are supposed to be peaceful. Many of the news bulletins that might be generated between now and the first air horn will be negative.

Miami Dolphins coach Tony Sparano's son scheduled his wedding for the break, and then Sparano and his wife traveled. New York Jets coach Rex Ryan took a cruise. Bills general manager Buddy Nix went golfing.

When they return home, the last thing they want to learn is that their players have been in the headlines.

Each coach sent their players home with a message to be safe and smart while staying in shape.

"They will be on their own for a while, and we need to continue to work to get ourselves into good condition both physically and mentally," Patriots coach Bill Belichick said. "There are a lot of techniques and individual things that guys can work on between now and the start of camp in addition to the conditioning. That's what we emphasize to each different player."

Ryan gave the Jets a specific directive.

"Keeping that trophy in mind," Jets receiver Jerricho Cotchery said. "That's the main thing, making sure we're doing the things necessary to help get us to that point. We have time. Guys will get a little rest, but we have to keep that trophy in mind when you're training. We're going to still be focused."

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