Green discussed a number of topics from the confidence in rookie kicker Stephen Gostkowski, to the rivalry with the New York Jets and the challenge of beating the team's former defensive coordinator Eric Mangini.
Eric Mangini left the Patriots in 2006 to accept the head-coaching job with the New York Jets. Mangini installed the Patriots work ethic; defensive schemes (the 3-4 defense) and the accountability he learned under Patriots head coach Bill Belichick. That familiarity with the Patriots, and the experience of years in the Patriots system allowed Mangini's Jets to play New England tough in both contests during the regular season, even managing to pull off the upset at Foxborough in November.
Of all the possible matchups the Patriots could have had in the playoffs, seeing Mangini's Jets in the Wildcard was not what the Patriots wanted. "Bad Thing," said Green of seeing the Jets in the first round. "It's Eric Mangini. He's from here and he's a good coach. It's not like we're playing a foreign team. They know our weaknesses and our strengths. It's not something we wished for, but it's the way the playoff system was setup."
Green recalls the previous meetings as hard-fought games, and the one thing that really stood out from the Jets win at Foxborough, was the sloppy conditions and the horrible state of the field. "The only thing I really remember about that game, really, was the turf," said Green. "That field was horrible. It's still in my mind, I just thank God that we've got the new [Fieldturf]."
Beating the Jets this time in the playoffs will be no easy task Green admits, and will be more difficult without defensive leader Rodney Harrison who was sidelined with yet another injury. "I feel really bad for Rodney, everyone knows what kind of guy Rodney is, on and off the field," Green said. "He's had a lot of bad luck in this past year and a half. He's the cornerstone of the defense, but I can tell you one thing about these Patriots, we have guys who can come off the bench and make plays."
The Patriots will need their bench players to make a contribution. Missing are starting FS Eugene Wilson (IR), SS Harrison (knee), LB Junior Seau (IR) among others. Still, Green has confidence the Patriots will win the game. He doesn't see anyone, even a coach as talented as Mangini, upsetting the Patriots at home for the second time in the same season. "I can't see that happening," Green admitted.
Listen to the complete interview, compliments of Sirius NFL Radio, as Green talks about the rematch with Mangini's Jets, the challenge of stopping Chad Pennington, Leon Washington and the Jets offense, and much more!
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|Ty Warren #94 and Jarvis Green #97 of the New England Patriots defense take down Kevan Barlow #32 of the New York Jets during the first quarter of the game on September 17, 2006 at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)|