Like all Americans, the Jets went back to work Monday determined to begin restoring some sense of normalcy to their daily routine following the horrifying terrorist attacks on New York and Washington six days ago. Management made a transaction (with Tom Tupa healthy, punter Tommy Parks was released) and players began preparing for Sunday's game at New England.
"For an hour and a half or two [hours], guys were able to put what happened behind us and just focus on the game and focus on our preparations for the game," center Kevin Mawae said. "I think we had a good practice today, a lot of guys were focused and we got the basics down for the beginning of a good week of practice."
But like all Americans, the Jets' thoughts most of the day were with those who perished in the disasters and those who are spearheading the rescue efforts in nearby Manhattan. At his locker adorned with an American flag and a cross, kicker John Hall gazed sadly at the floor.
"For us as a team we've been talking about what possibly can we do to help out?" said Hall, who talked about the sobering sight of Naval ships in the waters beyond his Long Beach home. "I know guys have been donating money and time and I've been going to Target everyday. I'm at home, I can't do anything, so I just go to Target and get extension cords and coolers and whatever I can do."
The Jets have also noticed the general goodwill citizens have displayed towards one another since last Tuesday. "It's a sad story, it's a sad chapter in our history, but at the same time, if you really look around and see what's going around, there's a lot of good things going on," Hall said. "Just from how we're treating each other and how everybody's standing behind each other and lifting each other up."
"You know how hard it is driving from Jersey to New York," lifelong tri-state area resident Wayne Chrebet said. "You see the blinker now is not a source of weakness, where ‘He put his blinker on, let's speed up.' You actually see people having better road etiquette and being more gracious."
A few minutes after Chrebet spoke, the light at the intersection of Hofstra's back entrance and Charles Lindbergh Blvd. changed to green on the Hofstra side even though cars on Charles Lindbergh Blvd. were stuck underneath the red light. Just a week ago, such a scene would have set off a cacophony of angry sounds and hand motions.
But today, nobody honked.
Tune in Sunday morning to the "New York Football Report," which can be heard from 10 to 11 a.m. on the radio at WDGA-850 AM in West Palm Beach and online at wdga.com. Jets Confidential Editor Dan Leberfeld and Giants Insider Editor Ken Palmer will co-host the show, which is sponsored by sportbet.com and will run every Sunday morning during the NFL season.