Rex Ryan says Wildcat will be featured by Jets more this season

Jets head coach Rex Ryan looks on during Jets head coach Rex Ryan looks on during NFL training camp. (July 29, 2013) Photo Credit: Hans Pennink

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CORTLAND, N.Y. - The Wildcat is here to stay, said Rex Ryan.

After much offseason hype about the formation following the offseason acquisition of Tim Tebow in March of 2012, the Wildcat was a massive dud behind old offensive coordinator Tony Sparano. But Ryan has no doubt it'll be featured more in Marty Mornhinweg's West Coast system.

"I would say we probably would because you guys say, we never used it, so I would say, yeah," Ryan said. "I would think that's part of what we do."

When told of his head coach's plan, quarterback Mark Sanchez didn't seem to mind. "I mean, he's the head man," he said. "He's got the call, so if he thinks it'll work, hopefully it's going to work well."

With new quarterbacks coach David Lee -- who helped bring the Wildcat craze to the NFL -- on their side, it's no surprise the Jets would try to run it on game day.

"I know coach Lee's passion about it," Sanchez said. "I know him and Marty have a good thing going there with the wildcat stuff. They both run a little bit of that in their past so hopefully it's something that can help the club."

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The Jets' Tebow-led Wildcat failed to deliver in 2012 -- Tebow rarely even played -- but Sanchez said he feels comfortable running the formation. "It's not that hard," he said. "You're just running the ball from the [shot]gun."

Although the word "Wildcat" may cause some Jets fans to groan, Ryan insists the formation isn't going anywhere -- even though most NFL teams rarely take the ball out of their quarterback's hands.

"I think it's here to stay for the simple fact guys are getting these quarterbacks now, these mobile quarterbacks, with the size, speed and all that type of stuff," Ryan said. "So I do think it's here to stay. It does give you the numbers back. Sometimes on defense you're playing with plus-one, but it's a great equalizer and that's what I was saying when we were putting it in with [former Jet] Brad [Smith] and Leon Washington and Tebow or whoever.

"But the other thing is you're seeing different guys do it. We had Jeremy Kerley do it, we had Brad do it. It doesn't have to be the quarterback," he added, though it sounded as if he was referring to the read option and not the Wildcat. "But the fact that it is the quarterback I think is sometimes even better than having a running-back-type guy do it."

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