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Jets center Mangold eager to run ball with Rex

TAMPA, Fla. - Nick Mangold's ears perked up immediately. The Jets center took notice of Rex Ryan's "We're going to the White House" opening statement Jan. 21, but there was another Ryan line that Mangold latched onto.

Which was: "The message to the rest of the league is, 'Hey, the Jets are coming, and we're going to give you everything we've got, and that's going to be, I think, more than you can handle."

Mangold smiled.

"To me, when someone says something like that, I instantly go to the run game," he said yesterday at the Tampa Convention Center. "And as an offensive lineman, I love running the ball, and luckily with T.J. [Thomas Jones] and Leon [Washington], those are fantastic. When he says the Jets are coming, I figure the Jets are running it. That's what I immediately thought of when I heard that."

Mangold wasn't at the Jets' facility when Ryan was introduced, but he watched on line from home in Centerville, Ohio. Mangold was in Tampa to publicize next week's Pro Bowl, in which he will play for the first time.

Mangold went back to Ohio shortly after his season ended, but he has kept up with most of the Jets' offseason news, including some made by an anonymous Jet who said Brett Favre had been a "distant" presence in the locker room.

Mangold took issue with the perception that Favre caused any dissension.

"We had a good joking and playful banter, but at the same time, he's 39 and I'm 24 , and I'm not expecting him to come over and get a game of Halo in right after practice," Mangold said, referencing the video-game series.

"So I knew that there's a difference there. This isn't a guy I came in with like Brick , where we were in the Senior Bowl, the Combine and get drafted together by the same team. I expect different things from Brick than I would with Brett coming in. It's age, experience and all those things, not ."

As for the charge the anonymous player made about Favre not going to dinner with teammates, Mangold didn't have a problem with that, either. "The reality is he was just going home to be with his kids," he said. "There's a huge difference with that ."

Now that the Jets have chosen a coach, the million-dollar ($13 million, to be exact) question is whether Favre returns. Mangold said he hasn't talked to him since the season ended.

"I asked him when we were heading out and he said, 'I have to think about it and take some time,' " Mangold said. "That's all I know, and I haven't talked to him about it, but really, I know he's going to make the best decision for himself and for the team."

Mangold said he was excited and "intrigued" about Ryan after seeing his aplomb at his introductory news conference.

But at the same time, Mangold said the sting of how the Jets' season ended - going 1-4 after an 8-3 start - still stung.

"It was a shame that we did crash like that, and it's one of those things you go into the offseason regretting," Mangold said. "To be done with the season on New Year's and not in the postseason was a huge disappointment from where we were."

Notes & quotes: The Jets made official four additions - reported previously - to the staff. They announced the hiring of assistant coaches Henry Ellard (wide receivers); Anthony Lynn (running backs); Doug Plank (assistant secondary) and Dennis Thurman (secondary). The team also announced that Bob Sutton, its defensive coordinator since 2006, would remain as senior defensive assistant/linebackers coach.

SUNDAY

Raymond James Stadium, Tampa

6:18 p.m.

TV: Ch. 4

Radio: WFAN (660)

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