Pro-Bowl Center Talks Rex, Geno And The Team's New Regime On 'Boomer & Carton'

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Thirteen months ago, the New York Jets rallied to save Rex Ryan’s job.

It was obvious to everyone that history wasn’t going to repeat itself in 2014. Not after a fourth straight season missing the playoffs.

“I think we all saw the writing on the wall,” Jets center Nick Mangold said Thursday morning on WFAN radio.

Ryan — popular in the locker room and affable with the media — was fired along with general manager John Idzik late last month. Mangold said it was the right call by owner Woody Johnson.

“As Woody has said, we’re in the business of winning, and 4-12 is not winning,” he said. “Changes had to be made.”

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The 31-year-old said he met new head coach Todd Bowles at the Jets’ facility on Wednesday. It was just in passing, but the former Arizona Cardinals defensive coordinator left a good impression.

“You could tell right away just from ‘Hi’ and ‘How ya doing’ his passion for the game, his intensity,” Mangold said. “I’m excited to play for him.”

More from Mangold:

— On Ryan landing with the Buffalo Bills: “They’re getting a great coach who’s going to be good for Buffalo. … It’ll be fun, after going against his defense for six years in training camp, now getting the opportunity to see it with live bullets. I’m pretty excited about it. I think we can do some good things.”

— On new offensive coordinator Chan Gailey: “I don’t know much about him. I’ve heard great things about getting the ball out, spreading it around. … One of the things I love about (football) is getting able to go in, dive into the playbook and learn a new playbook. So getting to see how Chan views offense and how he attacks defenses, you know, it just kind of gets me giddy.”

— On whether Geno Smith can be a top QB: “Definitely. He’s got the tools there, and I think it’s development. He was thrust in early being a rookie (in 2013) … and then this year it was up and down. He’s gotta learn from it and improve. And it should be a fun offseason of learning a new offense and seeing how he handles it.”

— On whether the Jets should have benched Smith for Michael Vick earlier in the season: “Maybe. Hindsight is always 20-20, and you never know. At the same time, we saw what Geno could do and we saw the work that he put in. We were hoping for better things. Obviously, it didn’t work out as well as we would have liked. But as long as he keeps improving we should be able to do some good things.”

— On his injured ankle: “Much better. It’s healed up. They’re going to let me go out there in ‘Zona for the Pro Bowl and hopefully represent the Jets well out there.”

— When pressed on Idzik: “We’ll find out if it was a disaster down the road. It’s, I think, too early to tell.”

— On whether he’d ever play for the Patriots: “I don’t think that’ll happen. My agent probably hates me for that, but I don’t think that’s happening.”

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