Jets offensive coordinator Tony Sparano coaches during the Jets' rookie...

Jets offensive coordinator Tony Sparano coaches during the Jets' rookie minicamp. (May 4, 2012) Credit: Getty Images

Tony Sparano's mouth isn't the only noticeable difference this year in the offensive meeting room.

The Jets new coordinator demands a level of attention that, according to tight end Dustin Keller, apparently wasn't there when Brian Schottenheimer was running the show.

"When Sparano's up there talking, all eyes are on him. It's a change, you know?" Keller said Tuesday night at the United Way of New York City's 19th annual "Gridiron Gala" event in Manhattan.

Teammate Brandon Moore was honored as a "Hometown Hero," along with the Giants' Chris Snee and Hall-of-Famer Harry Carson.

"Before, I would say, it was a little bit more laid-back. But with him, it's more stern and he just has everybody's attention and I think guys are paying more attention to details now more than ever."

Sparano already has implemented more streamlined verbiage among the offense, plus he's added more offensive line calls and blocking schemes using tight ends to help limit sacks. Asked if those blocking schemes could help oft-criticized right tackle Wayne Hunter, Keller said yes. "I think there's a lot more options for us to help each other out in this," he said of Sparano's system.

But perhaps the most noticeable change is that Sparano brings a level of accountability Keller said he's never seen in his previous four seasons with the Jets. "I think he definitely runs a tighter ship than I've seen from anyone before," he said. "And he's not going to let guys slip up . . . And it's going to continue. You can tell it's not just like a one day or an OTA thing. This thing is going to keep on going and going. And I think we need it."

Joe Namath, who also attended the event, believes Sparano and the rest of the staff has something "up their sleeves" when it comes to Tim Tebow and the Wildcat. Though the Jets legend said Mark Sanchez unequivocally is the better quarterback, he said Tebow "is a positive, in any way you add him to the organization."

Namath, who initially criticized the Tebow trade, said he's a fan of both quarterbacks but believes Sanchez -- who he called "sensational" -- will prove it this season. And perhaps, like him, will win a Super Bowl in his fourth season.

Namath on Jets' criticism. On the friction Namath had with the Jets after criticizing them last season, he said, "It's rough. None of us like to be critiqued, criticized in a negative way, and it gets bent sometimes. I don't like feeling the vibes that I get back whenever I cross [Jets owner] Woody [Johnson]'s path. Rex and I have been getting along well when we bump into each other, but I know there's an underlying sensitivity there that the Jets have."

More Jets