We all know Jets coach Rex Ryan can dish it. He said on Friday that he can take it, too.
Ryan heard about Pats receiver Wes Welker using the words “foot, feet, toe and toes” a combined 10 times during his chat with the media in Boston on Thursday.
He declined to discuss the incident Welker intentionally or unintentionally raised – the foot fetish videos and pictures of a woman who resembled Ryan’s wife that surfaced on the Internet last month.
But he did say that he can take the heat.
"I think with Wes Welker, this is a huge rivalry-type game and anything goes and I can take it," Ryan said on Friday. "I'm not going to discuss it but I can take it."
When asked if it was "over the line," Ryan replied, "Not getting into that. Anything, everything goes this week. And that is the way it is."
Ryan wasn’t the only Jet to address Welker’s comments, which included three “feet” references, five “foot” references and two references to “toe/toes.” The full context of Welker's quotes can be seen here.
“It was good and I’m sure Rex had a laugh about it,” left guard Matt Slauson said.
Nick Mangold agreed with Slauson and noted that Welker broke Pats coach Bill Belichick’s cardinal rule: don’t say anything to the media.
“I thought it was pretty funny; I got a good chuckle out of it,” Mangold said. “I don’t think he listened to Belichick very well, but I give him credit. It was funny.”
REX ON REGGIE: Ryan also responded to Hall of Famer Reggie Jackson’s rip on Friday.
During an appearance Thursday afternoon on The Michael Kay Show on 1050 ESPN, the former Yankee great said that Ryan’s shots at Patriots quarterback Tom Brady were misguided.
"This guy is an automatic Hall of Famer, making fun of him is like making fun of Mariano Rivera," Jackson said. "What are you doing? What are you doing?"
On Friday, Ryan said that Jackson was entitled to his opinion and joked that the Jets could use Jackson Sunday in their Divisional Round showdown against New England.
"You know what? We're gonna always be who we are. Just like Reggie Jackson is always who he was. And, you know, we could use Reggie's bat this week. If he wants to help us out, I'd be happy if that happened," Ryan said with a smile.
THEY CAN HAVE IT: The Jets' offense hasn’t scored a first-quarter touchdown in 13 straight games, but that troubling stat won’t alter Ryan’s philosophy of deferring if the Jets win the opening coin toss.
The Jets have been outscored 103-39 in the first quarter and many believe it will be difficult for them to rebound from an early deficit against the Pats.
But that won't alter Ryan's plans.
“I just think this is who we are. We’re not afraid to play defense. We’ll kick it off to them and see what happens,” Ryan said. “Their percentage of scoring is higher than anybody else in the league, but regardless of when they get the ball, it’s going to be a challenge. To be honest, I’d just as soon play defense first.”