FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- Is Rex Ryan experiencing Patriots envy?
Ryan respects New Englands' decade of excellence, but he didn't give the impression Wednesday that he's a firm believer in the Patriot Way. You got the sense that he feels the Patriots have one invaluable resource -- Tom Brady.
"To say you're going to model your franchise after them ... hey, shoot, I'll take the quarterback and we'll see how many wins I have," Ryan said.
It's an interesting thought, considering he's never had a franchise quarterback. Ryan had four seasons of Mark Sanchez, followed by the growing pains of rookie Geno Smith. Someday, maybe, Smith can be an elite quarterback. Ryan hopes it happens on his watch. After six games, it's way too soon to tell.
"Elite quarterbacks make the guys around them better," Smith said. "I believe elite quarterbacks have a unique trait. It's just kind of built within you."
Smith said "it just comes with time." Ryan may not have too much time, so he hopes Smith develops ahead of the curve. Maybe Ryan can hang around long enough until Brady retires. That will be a dark day in New England because, make no mistake, the Patriots would be no better than .500 without him.
In the meantime, Ryan continues to chase his nemesis.
"We think we have a good plan in place," he said. "At the same time, you have to respect the fact that [the Patriots] have won [the division] every year. Absolutely, you can respect them, but we fear none of them, I promise you that."
ICYMI: Chatty rookie Sheldon Richardson had some interesting things to say about Brady. "No one really treats him like [Superman] around here," Richardson told ESPN.com. "I think he's the complete opposite of that." ... Chatty kickoff returner Josh Cribbs made his Jets practice debut, announcing his plans to "electrify" the team. ... No, Ryan didn't tell the players to abstain from sex this week. So he claimed. I'm not making this up. ... Not a surprise here: The Jets confirmed that CB Kyle Wilson has a concussion. Brady's probably disappointed.