Sanchez, Kerley back embattled Sparano

December, 30, 2012
12/30/12
10:30
PM ET
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- With his name rumored as the first Jets coach to go, offensive coordinator Tony Sparano left the locker room in Buffalo and gruffly declined to talk to reporters.

But other members of the organization didn’t get out so quickly.

Rex Ryan, who brought in Sparano this season after he was axed as the Dolphins head coach, was asked about Adam Schefter’s report that Sparano would be fired.

“I think when you look at it, whether it’s anybody -- I’m talking myself, Tony, players, whatever, all that will be addressed at a different time. As much as I hate talking about this Buffalo game, that’s where I’d like to keep those questions.”

Not exactly a stirring endorsement. But Ryan and his staff have their own necks to worry about.

Quarterback Mark Sanchez had Sparano’s back however.

“I thought he was great for us,” Sanchez said. “I thought he was tough on us, he held everybody accountable. But we just needed to execute better from a player standpoint, and it starts with the quarterback. I thought he worked his butt off, he gave us everything he had, and I’m not going to speculate on who is going to be here and who’s not going to be here.”

Wide receiver Jeremy Kerley, who will return next season and could be a key part of the receiving staff, also said he would like to see Sparano return.

“I’d like to see him come back,” Kerley said. “He’s an aggressive coach so the play style he wants is aggressive so it definitely helps me on my attack, my approach to the game. Yeah, I like his style.”
Jane McManus has covered New York sports since 1998 and began covering football just before Brett Favre's stint with the Jets. Her work has appeared in Newsday, USA Today, The Journal News and The New York Times. Follow Jane on Twitter.

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