|ESPN.com: AFC East||[Print without images]|
NEW YORK -- Former USC quarterback Mark Sanchez declined the NFL's invitation to join several players at Radio City Music Hall on Saturday, but he happened to be in the area Sunday. That's because the New York Jets flew him into town on a red-eye late last night and he attended a news conference at the team's practice facility this morning.
|AP Photo/Rich Schultz|
|New Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez met with reporters in New York on Sunday.|
Jets fans roared their approval as Sanchez made the rounds at Radio City. He met with reporters in the basement of the famous building and talked about how his former USC teammates celebrated the NFL draft Saturday during a heavily attended spring game at the Rose Bowl.
"They kept calling timeouts in the game when a USC player would get drafted," Sanchez said. "And coach [Pete] Carroll told me the crowd went nuts when they announced I was going to the Jets."
Of course, Carroll caused some controversy when he publicly questioned Sanchez's decision to leave school. But Sanchez said Carroll attended his draft party and indicated that all was well.
In the past few weeks, he has reached out to former USC quarterbacks Carson Palmer, Matt Cassel and Matt Leinart to talk about what to expect in the NFL. He said Palmer instructed him to be at the Jets' facility "24-7."
Sanchez said playing at USC has given him a head start on other quarterbacks because he's been "speaking the language" for several years. On Sunday, Sanchez was sporting a green tie in deference to the Jets. He said his aunt Arlene purchased the tie as his family rushed to the airport last night.
"Make sure you get that name because she'll like that," he joked.
One reporter interrupted the proceedings to ask Sanchez why his "locks were so touchable." Sanchez responded by saying he doesn't use any product and that he normally has a cap on. Hard-hitting stuff.
Sanchez said he'll spend this week in New York before returning home for a couple days.