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Jets’ Brandon Marshall says leaders need to set tone

Jets wide receiver  Brandon Marshall looks on from

Jets wide receiver  Brandon Marshall looks on from the sideline against the Buffalo Bills on Jan. 3, 2016. Photo Credit: Getty Images / Tom Szczerbowski

Brandon Marshall said his unwavering optimism isn’t shared by everyone in the Jets’ locker room.

“Some do,” the receiver said when asked about his positive outlook Monday on a conference call. “But we don’t need all. We just need the right guys to feel that way.”

The Jets are 1-4 after losing three straight games. They have been overmatched and outcoached and have thwarted their own efforts with self-inflicted wounds.

And now the Arizona Cardinals — Todd Bowles’ former team — await them on Monday Night Football.

Right now, reaching the postseason seems like a pipe dream. For the time being, all that the Jets are focused on is getting one win to get back on track.

“It’s not to point the finger at anyone,” nose tackle Steve McLendon said. “We’re all in this together. We have to keep remembering that we are a team. We are the New York Jets. And if we believe in ourselves, we believe in this team and we believe in one another, we can turn this thing around.”

According to Marshall, there was no players-only meeting held behind closed doors. Instead, players returned to the practice facility in Florham Park, New Jersey, with a “business as usual” mentality. And he insisted that the locker room won’t fracture as long as the right players are front and center.

“You need your leaders to have this type of energy, this type of outlook,” the 11-year veteran said. “That’s all you need. Everyone is not a leader. There are certain guys on the team that people look up to. And when those guys have their heads down, that’s a trickle-down effect.”

Ryan Fitzpatrick agreed. “I think it takes maturity,’’ the quarterback said. “I think it takes self-belief. I think with the experience we have and with the leadership we have in this locker room that there’s no way I can see that happening.”

Bowles said his message to the team was the same as it was last week: Finish in the fourth quarter. “We play hard,” he said. “We play tough. We play smart most of the game. We just have to find a way to turn the corner.”

Marshall believes they will do just that. But for now, he understands the criticism from fans and the media.

“We expect to be killed out in the streets and killed in the media because our record shows that we’re not a really good team,” he said. “Failure speeds up the growth process. So that’s what I’m excited about. We’ve had a lot of failure these first five games. We’re growing rapidly, because we have no choice. That’s the awesome thing about failure.”


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