All the reports that the New York Jets are shopping cornerback Darrelle Revis, with Tampa Bay as a strong contender, were refuted by coach Rex Ryan on Friday when he was asked about the future of arguably the team's best player.
Ryan repeated several of the Jets' talking points during an interview with Michael Kay and Don La Greca on ESPN New York 98.7 FM on Friday afternoon. He reiterated that he didn't know who the team's starting quarterback will be but that there will be competition. Asked if he wanted Tim Tebow to be on the roster, Ryan avoided a direct answer.
"Tim's under contract," Ryan said, "and I also understand that this is the early stages of building our roster, so we'll let it play out and we'll see what happens."
Ryan refuted the notion that 2013 will be a rebuilding year for the Jets despite seven defensive players lost. He noted that nine defensive players departed the offseason he joined the Jets and the team performed well.
He said the receiver corps, which lost tight end Dustin Keller to Miami in free agency, has some strong potential. Santonio Holmes will be coming back from a foot injury. Ryan expressed optimism in Stephen Hill's second season, lauded Clyde Gates and said of Jeremy Kerley: "I thought he came into his own this year as a slot receiver."
Ryan seemed to take umbrage at the notion that he was a lame-duck coach heading into this season and, even though the roster for spring workouts has not been set, had his strongest words yet about how good the 2013 Jets can be.
"We're going to have a football team that's going to play a certain brand of football that I don't think we've played yet," Ryan said. "I don't think we've maximized the kind of style of play since I've been here. I don't believe we've played to the style that we're getting ready to.
"I believe there's much more to give, and I think we're going to get it out of them. I think we'll be committed, in my opinion, of playing that kind of football -- and, quite honestly, playing a style of football that can make our fans proud."