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NEW YORK (WFAN) – Amid a brutal season on the field and a hotbed of controversy off of it, Jets general manager Mike Tannenbaum chatted with WFAN host Mike Francesa on Friday afternoon.
Francesa questioned the executive repeatedly, but Tannenbaum wouldn’t say much more than the fact that his team needs to improve and make adjustments.
“Right now, there are a lot of little things that are adding up to us not getting it done,” Tannenbaum said. “Winning teams make plays at critical times … We’ve had critical mistakes at the wrong times, and that’s what winning teams don’t do.”
Francesa didn’t exactly buy that analysis, as the 3-6 Jets are in the midst of a three-game losing streak and are performing well below expectations.
“You’re painting an unfair picture, Mike, because you’ve lost four of these games by 17 or more points and three of them by more than 21 points,” Francesa said. “Those aren’t competitive games. Last week you got outgained 2 to 1. You haven’t had an offensive touchdown in two weeks. This has been a dire breakdown.”
Tannenbaum’s theme throughout the interview was the fact that the whole organization is in this together, and that everybody affiliated with the team is 3-6.
“We’re all 3-6, Mike,” Tannenbaum said. “Collectively, we’re it together. Our personnel department is 3-6, our security department is 3-6; we’re all in this together and we’re all 3-6. With that said, though, I’m here every day. I see the character and the work ethic of this team, and we just have to see the results on Sunday. But it’s not for a lack of commitment. (Head coach) Rex (Ryan)’s leadership has been great.”
Francesa replied by saying,”I don’t know if anything’s been great, Mike.”
That brought the conversation to backup quarterback Tim Tebow, who has been a non-factor since being acquired in the offseason.
Has he performed up to Tannenbaum’s expectations?
“From a production standpoint, it hasn’t been necessarily where we thought it would be,” the general manager said. “He has converted first downs … Right now the Tebow decision is a 3-6 decision, like everything else.”
Tannenbaum said he doesn’t believe that the presence of Tebow has undermined starter Mark Sanchez, to which Francesa adamantly disagreed.
“You’ve undermined your own quarterback,” Francesa proclaimed. “Maybe he’s even told you this, but he’s got to detest this. There isn’t one starting quarterback in the league who wouldn’t tell you that he would detest this happening to him, being yanked out of the game. No one else yanks their quarterback out of the game!”
Francesa continued to ask Tannenbaum about the team’s struggles on offense, especially since Ryan said earlier in the season that this might be the best team he’s ever had.
Tannenbaum said that he’s attacking the problems at hand, and the key is just being consistent week after week.
“The point is, when you’ve played the better teams this year, you have looked terrible against those teams,” Francesa said. “I think these problems run a little deeper than the way you’re describing them, that’s what I see. You don’t sound very alarmed about your team. That surprises me, that you’re not more alarmed about your ballclub.”
What did you think of the interview and Tannenbaum’s responses? Let us know in the comments section below…