NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Rex Ryan has expressed plenty of confidence coming off the Jets’ bye week, even going as far as telling the media, “I can’t tell you how excited I am.”

But unlike in past seasons, the outspoken head coach hasn’t made any grand promises about making the playoffs or taking home the Vince Lombardi Trophy.

The same can’t be said for cornerback Antonio Cromartie, however.

“The Jets will make the playoffs this year,” Cromartie told the NFL Network. “We believe in each other, and we believe in what coach Ryan and his staff is putting us to schemes and stuff. So we definitely are going to make the playoffs this year.”

The 2007 Pro Bowler isn’t the only Jet who thinks Gang Green has a solid chance to shock the football world and make the playoffs.

Earlier this week, defensive end Mike DeVito told WFAN co-hosts Joe Benigno and Evan Roberts in his weekly spot that he is confident that New York will go 6-2 in their final eight games and be one of the final 12 teams standing come playoff time.

Ryan backed his confident players before practice Thursday.

“I feel as an entire football team that we should all feel like that. And I think we do feel like that,” he said. “Nobody wants to hear it, but who cares? That’s really how we feel. That’s our mentality. Whether you like it or not, that’s our mentality.

“I would think the Jets fans and the Jets community, obviously — they would want us to feel that way. And we do.”

New York currently sits at 3-5, good enough for last in the AFC East. Prior to their bye week, the Jets lost their second straight game in an embarrassing 30-9 defeat to the division-rival Dolphins at MetLife Stadium.

The Jets will kick off the second half of their season against the talented Seahawks at CenturyLink Field on Sunday. From there, they’ll head to St. Louis before coming home to take on the Patriots and the Cardinals. They’ll hit the road again for two consecutive games against Jacksonville and Tennessee before playing their final regular-season home game against the Chargers.

The final game of 2012 will be a rematch of the season opener, as the Jets will take on the Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium.

“We know it’s tough to get into the playoffs, especially when you back yourself up with that 3-5 record,” said Ryan. “But again, we’re going to keep swinging until they tell us that we’re out.

“All of us, in my opinion, believe we can make it.”

Can you see the Jets winning six of their final eight games and finishing the season 9-7, or is that nothing more than a pipe dream? Sound off with your thoughts and comments below…


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