Jets QB Mark Sanchez got REALLY, REALLY angry at coach Rex Ryan last season
ESPN NY reports:
At times, Mark Sanchez is the personification of California cool, but his competitive fire raged last season when Rex Ryan told reporters he considered benching his quarterback in the third quarter of a December loss to the Miami Dolphins.
"I wanted to fight him," Sanchez says in the current issue of GQ magazine, which features the New York Jets' star on the cover. "I was really mad."
In retrospect, the entire episode may have been a turning point in the Jets' season. It also was a coming-of-age moment for Sanchez, who raised his stature in the locker room by standing up to his coaches during a tense confrontation in practice -- and playing in pain a few days later in a pivotal win over the Pittsburgh Steelers.
The third-year quarterback refused to yield to Brunell in practice, according to the GQ article. Offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer tried to get Sanchez out of the huddle, reiterating that Ryan wanted Brunell to take reps.
Sanchez refused to budge.
"I was like, 'He can come tell me,'" Sanchez tells GQ. "And (Schottenheimer) is like, 'Come on, man, don't do that.'"
Seven months later, that moment still resonates among players and coaches.
"We had to demand, we had to order him, 'You're done, get out,'" quarterbacks coach Matt Cavanaugh told ESPNNewYork.com.
Said veteran guard Brandon Moore: "It was a tense moment. ... To see him fight back and press back with that, it was good to see."