Rex report: Tired of the same old questions

August, 7, 2012
8/07/12
3:08
PM ET
CORTLAND, N.Y. -- Naturally, Rex Ryan's daily news conference was dominated by questions about Tuesday's practice scuffles and his heated reaction on the field.

When reporters tried to connect the fights to last season's turmoil, Ryan bristled slightly. He wants to move forward, yet the 2011 debacle keeps coming up.

"I'm, quite honestly, sick and tired of talking about last year, because I think it's a joke I have to answer questions about that every single time," he said. "My answer is exactly the same. I said I never had the pulse of the team because I thought our team was close. We were the same team I've always had, but it wasn't the case. The reason I blame myself is because I wasn't in the meetings like I was in the past. I never knew there were some issues."

Here's a sampling of Ryan's quotes on the practice scuffles.

On what bothered him the most: "My big thing is, protect your teammates. Don't do anything selfish. Sometimes you're trying to be physical, but being physical is one thing; going past that is something else. That's what I didn't like. That's why I stopped (practice). I reminded guys the enemy's not in green and white."

On the first scuffle: "I saw a young rookie (Terrance Ganaway) run through a guy in a 'thud' period. That's not what you're looking for. That's not being physical. That, to me, is being selfish. I told guys about it and, sure enough, apparently somebody didn't get the message."

On Antonio Cromartie jawing with Stephen Hill and delivering a hard tackle on Dustin Keller: "If Cro plays physical, he's about as good as it gets (at cornerback). I thought Cro should've backed off and not hit Dustin, but he was trying to be physical."

On his decision to make the team run 11 gassers as punishment for the fights: "I wanted them to know how serious I am about it. I also wanted them to run until I was tired."

On whether the team is bonding in camp: "Oh, yeah, no question. I think they're getting a little too close, punching each other (laughs). But you don't see it in the dorms like I see it. My dorm room is down on the first floor, where they have a pool table and ping pong and a TV. They're enjoying each other's company. You see it in the chow hall and in the meetings."

On the perception that the Jets are undisciplined: "Everybody has a right to their opinion, no matter how wrong they are. I think we're a little more disciplined than what the general perception is out there. You can't have the wins we've had in the past and not be a disciplined football team. It hasn't been good enough because we haven't won a Super Bowl yet, but we're aiming to."

His reaction to Boomer Esiason claiming the Jets should cut Tim Tebow: "Hey, you know what, Boomer has a right to his opinion. I totally disagree with it. Tim is an excellent football player. He's great for our team. He's a tremendous teammate for the entire team."

Rich Cimini

ESPN New York Jets reporter

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