Rex Ryan just held his Wednesday news conference. As you'd expect, trading Matt Cassel was the topic of discussion.
Here are the running highlights...
On this week... We know what's in front of us. This is going to be a dogfight, no question about it. Both teams hungry for their first win in the division. ... Everybody knows about Suh, Cameron Wake, Olivier Vernon, they can really rush the passer. They have a lot of talent on that defense. Offensively, it's a zone-read attack. Similar to Philadelphia. They have a great player in No. 14, Landry. He's tough, he's an Anquan Boldin-type guy. Miller went 98 on me one time, so I got burned by that dude. Pouncey is one of the best centers in the league. It's definitely going to be a tough game. We'll see what happens. We're going to go in prepared. We know what we're going up against, against a very talented Miami Dolphins team.
On getting over the loss... We started our bounceback in the fourth quarter of that game, so that spoke volumes about our football team and how competitive we are. Our football is team is all about, we want to win. We know the task at hand is a tough one. We're going to give everything we have.
On Tyrod Taylor going on the road... It always is a bigger challenge offensively, in particular when you go on the road. The crowd noise, everything else. Communication is a heck of a lot harder on the road. Miami's home opener, it'll definitely be a challenge. We'll mix in silent counts... it's definitely a much bigger challenge on the road.
On trading Matt Cassel... Every decision goes in, you do what you feel is in the best interest of your football team. Not a shot at Matt at all. Matt did a great job but so did EJ. ... EJ did a tremendous job in the preseason. At this spot, this was more done by how we view EJ Manuel than Matt Cassel. EJ will develop more as the two than the three.
On Dareus/Suh getting paid... It is interesting because when you look at the pay increases, it's clear how people are valuing these defensive tackles. Rare to get a Suh, a Marcell Dareus. Two guys who play the run extremely well and get after the quarterback. I'm certainly happy we have Marcell and Miami is certainly happy they have Suh.
On making Cassel No. 2/Manuel inactive vs NWE... You're not going to go with three quarterbacks active. Have never done that as coach. ... Leaving training camp, there were really hard decisions to make and then into the season, trying to develop a quarterback, maybe we should've known this earlier, but you're going to develop more as the two than the three. We feel really good about EJ Manuel and how he's come along.
On what they lose with Cassel leaving... We lose a guy with NFL experience. He had a great deal of experience. But we have a lot of expertise, starting with Greg Roman as coordinator, but Chris Palmer as an offensive assistant, David Lee is fundamentally as good as it gets as quarterback coach. A lot of talent around him. If we didn't think this was in the best interest of our team, it wouldn't have been done.
On not being able to turn to Cassel if needed... I believe we can do that with EJ Manuel if the need arrives. ... We were not shopping Matt. We were not. But if any team contacts you, that's when the dialogue starts.
On if it's Whaley's decision... Decisions made for the betterment of the team. One man doesn't make the decision. Does he make the final decision, yes. But he's not acting as a rogue guy.
On Manuel... We feel we have the quarterbacks of the present and the future in Tyrod Taylor and EJ Manuel. How we feel about EJ Manuel is why a move like this is made. I think Manuel really raised his game. He's a big guy who has physical gifts. I think he has a chance to be a good quarterback in this league. That being said, we feel really good about our starting quarterback, Tyrod Taylor. We feel EJ will keep ascending. He has a better chance of doing that as the No. 2, than the No. 3.
On Incognito... Richie's past that. Richie has moved on past that. All the other stuff, that's behind Richie. You guys have seen that as well. ... He's been tremendous. Absolutely tremendous. As a player, but then everything else.
On teams neutralizing pass rush with quick passes... We're going to face a lot of that and, gosh, I don't know if I have an answer. Let's see what the conversation is at the end of the year. I'm confident in that and I believe it'll start this year.
On how Incognito has handled himself... There isn't one player, one person in this organization who doesn't respect Richie. That speaks volumes. Everybody respects him. He's been an outstanding teammate, he's been one heck of a football player. He's been all business on the field. Fun personality, engaging personality. He's been terrific.
On what Manuel lacked the first two weeks to be inactive... Obviously at the time, it was more about we liked the three quarterbacks. All three played extremely well. We feel good about them. When you look at the bigger picture, not just being narrow-minded all week, I like having EJ Manuel as the No. 2 quarterback instead of the No. 3. He's way more involved in the game plan. Has all the physical tools. Now, it's about trying to get in the game plan specific things, as the No. 2. As the No. 3, you're not getting reps or any amount of work as you'd get as the No. 2.
On Aaron Williams... He's stiff and sore. When you see him, you'll see what I'm talking about. He won't practice today. We'll put LeSean on the same plan as Percy. He won't practice today.
On if the Cowboys called about Manuel... I wasn't privy to the conversation.
On controlled emotion/tailoring his message... I put it on myself first. I have to do a better job of staying in control too -- this team is very much like me. I have to hold myself accountable, so it starts with me. I have to be not as animated, if you will. I have to control my language a little bit on the sideline. And our team as well. We want to be the least penalized team in the league. We're probably dead-last in the league right now, but we want to be the least penalized team in the league.