NEW YORK (WFAN/AP) — The Sanchize has a new nickname: El Capitan.

Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez will wear the captain’s “C” on his jersey this season, coach Rex Ryan announced on Wednesday.

“I see the way the guys are around him,” Ryan said. “This is really going to be his team. I’m not big on giving out those captain things, but we will put the ‘C’ on his jersey this year because he truly is our captain.”

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Ryan has traditionally alternated captains each week before games in his first two seasons, but said he’ll have one each on offense, defense and special teams. On offense, “clearly it is Mark Sanchez and it is his team.”

“I really never knew the roster the way I know it now,” Ryan said, “now being our third year here. And I’m really comfortable doing this now.”

Sanchez, entering his third season, has quickly earned the respect of his teammates with his work ethic and leadership abilities. He has helped lead the Jets to the AFC championship game in consecutive years and said Tuesday he’d be willing to restructure his contract if it helped the team land marquee free agents.

“Am I trying to drive up the jersey sales for Sanchez? Maybe that’s true,” Ryan quipped. “But it is something I take seriously. I think he’s earned that and I’m excited to see this young man grow.”

Does Sanchez deserve the captain’s “C”? Let us know in the comments below…

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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