Jets deny criticism of coach's system
Despite a published report that suggested otherwise, the New York Jets insist they are a team in complete harmony.
According to Sunday's report by the New York Daily News, receivers Derrick Mason, Santonio Holmes and Plaxico Burress all, at separate times in recent days, approached head coach Rex Ryan to complain about offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer and his system.
Mason, in fact, appeared to be benched for nearly the first three quarters of Sunday's 30-21 loss to the Patriots, replaced as the third receiver by rookie Jeremy Kerley.
After the game, Mason, Burress and Holmes all vehemently denied complaining about Schottenheimer, ripping the report as fiction.
Even Ryan insisted he never was approached by the receivers, saying, "That's Ripley's to me. If it is [true], maybe I got hit in the head or something. I don't remember that."
Ryan's explanation for Mason's lessened playing time was a plan to get action for Kerley, who caught three passes for 35 yards and a touchdown.
"We've been trying to get Kerley a few more shots," Ryan said.
Mason called his diminished playing time and the report "coincidence" and categorically denied complaining to Ryan.
"OK, let me say this: I've been in this thing [the NFL] 15 years and I've never criticized the offensive coordinator to a head coach -- never once," Mason said.
Burress said he thought the report was fabricated.
"Whoever wrote that story, they're just making up stories to sell papers," Burress said. "That never happened. Whoever wrote it is making up a story to make themselves look good. I've never went in to talk to Rex personally about anything."
Holmes, who led the Jets with four catches for 60 yards and a touchdown, said, "I honestly have no idea where that came from or who could have said it, but me, personally, I have no issue with coach Schottenheimer, and I didn't talk to Rex about anything."
The Jets' loss Sunday was their third straight defeat, dropping them to 2-3 this season.