Jets focusing on struggling Titans, not playoffs
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Rex Ryan is taking nothing for granted, not the way this season has gone for the New York Jets.
The Jets still have hope that a favorable schedule will give them a chance at the playoffs even after a 3-6 start. Ryan, though, is taking it one game at a time, beginning with the woeful Tennessee Titans on Monday night.
"I know we have three games left in the regular season," Ryan said. "But every bit of our energy is focused on this particular game. Whatever is in the past, we can't dwell on or look at or whatever. We're just focused right now on one game."
The Jets (6-7) head to Nashville having won two straight and three of their last four to put themselves a game out of the AFC's No. 6 seed. After the Titans (4-9), Jets finish out at home against San Diego (5-8) and at Buffalo (5-8).
"Guarantees are no good," Jets safety Yeremiah Bell said. "As a team, you've just got to take care of business. Talk is cheap. You've still got to go out, you've still got to play the game. As long as we keep that one-game-mentality approach, we'll be fine."
The Jets hit a low point when they were routed 49-19 on Thanksgiving night by New England to fall to 4-7. But they rebounded by beating a pair of losing teams, first Arizona and then Jacksonville last week. They didn't look good doing it, but at this point a win is a win.
Jets defensive end Mike DeVito said one loss can feel like the end of the world, but a couple of wins helps things out.
"It's kind of the way the atmosphere is around here and you have to recognize that and realize that the worst thing you can do is, when things like that are happening is to pack it in and really believe that," DeVito said. "Either way, you just have to continue each week to be consistent and get better."
Tennessee blew its chance to stay in the playoff mix or even salvage a winning season after owner Bud Adams put the entire franchise on notice that he wanted improvement. The Titans have lost three straight and five of their last six, most recently after blowing a 13-point halftime and falling 27-23 to Indianapolis.
Coach Mike Munchak is hoping the prime-time atmosphere brings out the best in his young Titans. They beat Pittsburgh 26-23 in prime time on Oct. 11, and this is the franchise's first Monday night game in Nashville since 2008.
"We know we're a lot better than 4-9. I know people don't know much about us," Munchak said. "They haven't seen us play other than the Pittsburgh game, which we won when we were on national TV. We want to win and play well and having it on national TV just adds to it, so maybe people can see really what we're about."
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