Had a very interesting conversation yesterday with Jets Hall of Fame quarterback Joe Namath. Wanted to talk Jets-Giants, the 1969 exhibition game between the two teams that was a huge deal back then, and Joe's general thoughts on his former team.
What took place, though, was an 80-minute talk in which Namath unloaded on Rex Ryan for running a loose ship, ripped Santonio Holmes for his taunting penalty in last Sunday's game against the Eagles, and a bunch of other stuff.
La Monica brought up an interesting point about Joe Willie, capturing it perfectly in his tweet for @NewsdaySports: "Namath, a guy who wore fur coats and posed for Playgirl thinks Rex runs too loose a ship."
Fair point. It's one Namath and I discussed, and here was his answer:
"I know our society has changed. Our world’s changed. Generations have changed. I was part of a generation that was different in the ‘60s and 70s. But in the sport of football, the team was where it’s at. It's still that way. But we have changed. It's more entertainment today."
Namath recalled a dinner he attended with former Jets owner Sonny Werblin and his wife, Leah Ray. Namath was simmering about a recent loss, and Mrs. Werblin told him to shake it off.
"I can remember her telling me, I was angry at the time, and she chucked. She said, 'Oh, Joseph, it's show business, honey.' I said, 'No, it's not. It's football.'
"But now it really is more entertainment, and the players have been schooled that from high school. They’re on stage. Vince Lombardi said, 'When you score a touchdown, act like you've been there.' That's not happening now."