Like his head coach, Mark Sanchez is still somewhat in shock a day after suffering a crushing loss to Indianapolis in the AFC Championship Game.

But the Jets rookie QB told reporters today that in spite of the sadness and frustration he feels, he also is hopeful for the future.

If Jets fans need a reason to believe in their team, all they need to do is remember the 4-6 start and its 7-2 finish.

“I think there was a point where we could’ve just tanked, but the way these guys are in this locker room, how excited we are to play for each other, and how Rex got us going, we just wanted to play for each other and win some games,” he said, referring to the team’s dramatic turnaround.

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When asked about the change in the culture surrounding the team, Sanchez told reporters: “Our attitude [has changed]. Just the way [head coach Rex Ryan] said, ‘Be proud to be a Jet.’ We want to be a football team that’s tough to play. …That’s the mentality Rex wants and I think we’re starting to get there.”

“…I’ve heard about the letdown and people expecting us to lose. So I think, to take this playoff run as long as we did is encouraging for them. But we’re not playing to erase any history or change anything like that. We’re playing for us.”