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Ryan wants Taylor to play more against Miami

Jason Taylor gets ready for his first game

Jason Taylor gets ready for his first game against his former team, the Miami Dolphins. (Sept. 26, 2010) Credit: Getty Images

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. - Rex Ryan has a message for Jets defensive coordinator Mike Pettine:

Free Jason Taylor!

Ryan said Thursday he wants to see more of Taylor, the 36-year-old pass-rushing specialist who - with one tackle in only 15 snaps - was just a rumor in Monday night's 45-3 loss to the Patriots.

"You know, I'm not happy with how we used him last week," Ryan said. "This guy is a great football player. We need to use him more. I think I was more disappointed in the plan of attack that we had."

Ryan said the Jets changed their personnel groupings after safety Jim Leonhard was lost for the season in a practice mishap last Friday. The shuffling and shifting somehow led to less Taylor, a linebacker who leads the Jets with four sacks.

"Obviously, things changed when we had Jim out, but [Taylor] has got to get more involved," Ryan said. "This guy makes plays. That's all I see: When he's out there, he's making plays, he's tipping balls, sacking the quarterback, he's making plays in the running game. He's a great player. We need to utilize him."

Ryan said he has "strongly suggested" to Pettine that Taylor get more snaps on Sunday against his old team, the Miami Dolphins. Taylor, who had a sack in the Jets' 31-23 win over the Dolphins in Week 3, said that's just fine with him.

"I've heard it from my coaches and stuff," Taylor said. "I'm not going to disagree. I obviously want to play every play. That's not the case, but I'm trying to make the most of the ones I get and they need to be better."

Asked if he is OK with the way he is being used, Taylor said: "We're 9-3. If I was inactive and we were 9-3, I'd still be happy we were winning. It's not about me. It's about our team and our defense as a whole."

OK, now that the politically correct answer is out of the way . . .

"With that being said, yeah, I do want to play," Taylor said. "Everybody wants to play. If there was anybody in this locker room who didn't want to be on the field, I'd be disappointed in that person. If I get more snaps, then great. I feel like the more snaps I get, the better I play. I've always been that kind of guy that gets into a rhythm and groove. If my number's called, I'll go do it."

The Jets need something to boost their pass rush against Dolphins quarterback Chad Henne, who threw three interceptions last week in Miami's 13-10 home loss to Cleveland but always seems to save his best for the Jets.

So . . . enter Taylor.

Said Pettine, "As we look at where he is right now in the season and we're ready to make a stretch run, what he's done in the times he's been in there, it merits more playing time. Plus, this being a big Miami week, I think there will be a little added extra with him."

Taylor denied that playing the Dolphins (6-6) will be a big deal to him, especially given that he's already done it once in Miami.

"It was unfamiliar to me down there, and a new experience, but we got past that hurdle, won the game, and that was big for us," he said. "Not personally, but as a team, it was big for us. This one is even bigger."


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