FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- On a conference call with New England Patriots reporters this morning, New York Jets coach Rex Ryan disagreed with a reporter who pointed out that it was a struggle at times for Patriots quarterback Tom Brady in a 23-21 season-opening win.
"I don't know if I would classify Tom Brady as struggling," Ryan said. "I'd have to see that to believe it; I don't think he's ever struggled. To me, what I saw was a team that could really run the football. In the past, they've run the ball, but not with the conviction that I saw in that first week, against a pretty darn good front. That's something that obviously looks like New England is going to run the ball more than they've done in the past."
Then Ryan went back to Brady and the passing game.
"If Tom had such a bad game, they had two receivers over 100 yards. Oh my goodness," Ryan said, laughing. "You have a couple Wes Welker clones there in [Julian] Edelman and [Danny] Amendola, so it's difficult, no question."
A few other soundbites from Ryan:
Change is in the air: "I know there has been a lot of talk about their personnel being different [but] we have seven new starters on defense and five new starters on offense."
Adopting a similar practice schedule to the Patriots with walkthroughs: "We'll have a little bit more than that but not much. It's about just getting through with a game and keeping your players fresh. Obviously they have to mentally be focused."
On ESPN.com's power rankings: "I think this team is a way better football team than people give it credit for. I think we were ranked 32nd in the power rankings. I'm sure we're 31st this week. So we'll see."
On preparing a defensive plan for the Patriots: "Especially when you play against somebody like Brady and Belichick, if they know 100 percent what you're in, then you're in trouble. Obviously, we can't do that. We have to be multiple in what we do."