Friday, October 5, 2012
Gastineau on Ring of Honor: I'll likely cry
By Jane McManus
FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — Mark Gastineau, who will be inducted Monday night into the Jets Ring of Honor along with Wesley Walker, spoke on Friday afternoon about the years since he retired from football. He detailed his peaceful life in New Jersey with his church, his wife and their two dogs. His pension, he said, is a blessing.
Inevitably, he was asked about the current Jets' defensive problems.
Mark Gastineau led the NFL in sacks with 19 in 1983 and 22 in 1984.
"I don't have any right to comment on those things and I will never step on a coach's toes," Gastineau said.
The former Sack Exchange anchor has apparently turned into the anti-Namath. He didn't reference the critical former Jets quarterback, but Gastineau has definitely taken the opposite approach when it comes to discussing the Jets in public.
Jets fans may be happy about that, but it'll probably mean Gastineau doesn't get his own radio show any time soon. As it is, Gastineau seems pretty content with his life, which includes singing in the church choir and fundraising for a favorite charity.
He is looking forward to his Ring of Honor induction, something he never envisioned when joining the NFL in 1979.
"I'll probably start crying. You guys'll make me cry right now thinking about it," Gastineau said. "It'a a big honor and it's honor that I will cherish."
Gastineau, a five-time Pro Bowl defensive end, expects to see fellow Sack Exchange members Joe Klecko and Marty Lyons there to help celebrate.
"There's no words to describe something that the New York Jets have decided to give me and Wesley," Gastineau said.
He is hoping to see a Jets win on Monday, which will be tough considering Houston is the heavy favorite even though the game is at MetLife Stadium.
"They're not going to give up," Gastineau said of the Jets. "This is when the going gets tough, the tough get going. So they're going to be all right."