Bart Scott is a pretty good linebacker. He’s tough, physical, dependable and he’s a guy who coaches know will be on the field each and every Sunday. Of a possible 128 games played in his career Scott has suited up 125 times and he has started every possible game since Halloween Night in Pittsburgh during the 2005 season.
Scott is also solid in the community and when he’s on your side he’s a great guy to be around.
Now a Jet, Scott is no longer on the Ravens’ side.
Lucky for him that Jets’ head coach Rex Ryan vividly remembers what the “Madbacker” was able to accomplish during his first 4 games of the 2006 season in Baltimore. During those 4 games Scott had 33 tackles (8+ per game), 5 sacks, 5 passes defended and an interception. Not bad work for an undrafted Southern Illinois Saluki.
However, over the course of his next 60 regular season starts including 16 last year in New York, Scott has averaged less than 6 tackles per game with just 7 additional sacks, 13 passes defended and one more interception. That’s decent production but it’s hardly worthy a contract that suggests “playmaker” – one that includes $48 million over six years, $27 million during the first 3 seasons.
Bart should at least in part thank Ray Lewis for his riches.
But he won’t!
Scott never liked playing in Lewis’ shadow. Back in 2007 when I hosted the Bart Scott Show, the former Raven commented often about how he and other defenders would do the dirty work and take on blockers so that Lewis could clean up and record stats. He even insinuated that Lewis would enter the pile late just to show up on film and perhaps pick up a cheap assisted tackle or three.
Apparently time apart from Lewis and Scott’s fat contract have done little to tame those feelings of resent bubbling just beneath the surface.
In a recent NY Times article Greg Bishop covered Scott’s migration to Baltimore and the pleasant memories he harbors for Charm City. Yet even with such fond recollections you still get the feeling that Scott believes he never got his just due as a Raven.
Both he and Lewis were free agents after the 2008 season and both were rumored to be following Ryan to the city that doesn’t sleep. When the free agent period commenced on a chilly February 27th night at 12:01 am back in 2009, it was Scott’s driveway that Rex Ryan pulled in to as part of the courting process to bring the linebacker to New York.
“I was always Plan A,” Scott said. “That was the first time in my life I was Plan A.”
Recently after Lewis chastised the Jets for “yapping” too much and talking like soon-to-be-crowned champions Scott got in another dig.
"I don’t even know what he said; I just know he said something. It’s just part of the show. If you listen to all his news conferences, they’re pretty much the same thing. It’s part of how he builds it up."
Scott’s teammate Kris Jenkins dug in a bit deeper when speaking to Newsday’s Bob Glauber.
"I just hope [on Monday night] he doesn’t hide behind the other linebacker that’s taking all the hits for him."
Hmmm, wonder who planted the seed to that thought?
Speaking of Kris Jenkins, the New York Post’s Bart Hubbuch according to Pro Football Talk made reference on his Twitter account about some juvenile behavior from the Jets and Jenkins relating to Ines Sainz (pictured during Super Bowl XLI Media Day), a female reporter from TV Azteca present at a recent practice.
Allegedly the Tweets told the story of defensive backs coach Dennis Thurman overthrowing players in drills in order to “accidentally” run into Sainz. Later Jason Taylor volunteered to participate in the drills.
Hubbuch described the scene as “hilarious.”
Apparently the juvenile behavior spilled over into the locker room when Sainz entered. The scene has been likened to that of incarcerated inmates getting riled up by the promise of a conjugal visit. The most vocal offender was said to be Jenkins who defended the lewd behavior when he shouted, “this is our locker room.”
Interestingly, the comments on Hubbuch’s Twitter account are now said to be “temporarily unavailable.” You have to wonder if the Jets asked Hubbuch to take them down fearing an investigation from The Commish.
One thing you can’t deny with the Jets, they sure do dish out the drama.
And with all that drama, the hype, the Hollywood HBO Hard Knocks experience, the volatile personalities and the trumped up expectations put out there by their cowboy head coach, the Jets are set up perfectly for a huge fall. In a way, this Jets’ team is a bit like the 2007 Ravens who expected to improve upon a 13-3 2006.
Then the Ravens’ bravado and swagger, mostly attributed to Ryan’s defensive unit, fueled a downward spiral instead of success and the Ravens finished 5-11. They couldn’t as Ray Lewis might say, cash the check written by the smack.
Back to Hard Knocks for a second, what kind of head coach lays into his team with a string of F-bombs and then raps up the profanity laced tongue lashing with, “Now let’s go get a snack”? Ever correct your kids and then say, “Now, how about some ice cream?”
He would not be my choice for head coach—any fan should fear the description of “player’s coach.” But that said, you can’t deny the entertainment value Ryan provides. The apple doesn’t fall far from the Buddy Ryan tree now does it?
Today the fans and media of The Big Apple embrace Ryan. They see him as bold, funny and brutally honest.
Mix in a string of losses and bold suddenly becomes stupid; funny morphs into silly while brutal honesty changes to immaturity.
The Ravens have seen this act before and it’s the reason why Ryan isn’t the skipper on Baltimore’s side line.
And it’s a damn good thing.
Well if you’ll excuse me, I think it’s time for a snack…