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Rex rallies troops before practice

Head coach Rex Ryan of the New York

Head coach Rex Ryan of the New York Jets after the game against the Jacksonville Jaguars. (Sept. 18, 2011) Credit: Getty Images

Rex Ryan did something unusual today.

Just before the Jets were set to start practice, Ryan called the team together near midfield and delivered a speech, trying to remind them of the importance of what's at stake when they step on the field against the Dolphins in Miami on Sunday.

"Well, I don’t do that very often," he said. "But I had a feeling that I wanted to say something. We don’t have team meetings every day, so we’ll have them the first of the week, like a Wednesday and a Friday, I’ll talk to the team and obviously the night before the game I’ll talk to them. But today, I just wanted to remind them of the opportunity that’s in front of us.

"Obviously, it’s a little different. For the last two years, we really haven’t been in this position. We obviously we were already in the playoffs last year, the year before we knew if we won we were in the playoffs. So this is a different scenario than we’ve had the last two years. So I just wanted to make sure that I just kind of express that we have a heck of an opportunity still in front of us and basically practice accordingly."

Was there anything Ryan saw over the last day or two that made him do that?

"It was just on my mind," he said. "I just wanted to reiterate it again: Look there are some great players in this league … One player I brought up today with [Takeo] Spikes. Spikes has been to multiple Pro Bowls, played 14 years, 200 games he’s played in and he’s never gone to a playoff game. Sometimes you can’t ever take it for granted.

"You’ve got an opportunity here and that was something I brought up today."

New York Sports