The Jets have set the standard in the NFL for one thing this season: anonymous player quotes.
After an unnamed Saints player slammed defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo in a NOLA.com story yesterday, linebacker Jonathan Vilma responded.
"No. I'm bothered you reported it. We're not the Jets who run to the media for everything," said Vilma, who was drafted by the Jets in 2004 and played the first four seasons of his career in New York.
Spagnuolo was one of the most coveted coordinators in the game when he left his defensive post with the Giants to be the head coach of the Rams four years ago. A failed stint in St. Louis, which led to him being fired after three seasons, was followed by a disastrous first season as Saints defensive coordinator.
Spagnuolo's unit finished last in total defense, last in rushing defense and second to last in pass defense amid a 7-9 season. An anonymous defensive player gave a "resounding" yes when asked if Spagnuolo deserved to be fired.
"Players have no say in anything," the Saints player told NOLA.com. "It was [a] complete opposite from before where it was a simple 'D' that players had a lot of control and say. We couldn't suggest [expletive] ... Nothing ever changed. It was his way only. Don't even get me started on lack [of] ability to adjust during games. Bad, bad, bad."
Jets players were anonymously quoted in a published report this season bashing backup quarterback Tim Tebow.
Vilma, though, would not directly refute what the Saints player said.
"That's not the question or the point. If he's man enough to tell you, he should be man enough to put his name on it. And you should do the same," he said.
Vilma: Jets, not Saints, leak dirt
New York Post | Jan 3