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Jets Need to Stop Acting Surprised

Without honesty, improvement won't be possible for the Jets

By Josh Alper
|  Tuesday, Nov 13, 2012  |  Updated 3:32 PM EDT
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Jets Need to Stop Acting Surprised

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Every party's a surprise party in Ryan's world.

Of all the things to dislike about the current state of the Jets, Rex Ryan's habit of acting surprised by lopsided defeats is just about the most annoying. 

It feels like Ryan spouts some variation on how well the team practiced and how well they prepared for the game every single time the Jets lose. That's either preceded or followed by some expression of shock that the game turned out that way, with Ryan simply unable to understand how such a thing could happen after such a fine week of practice.

What's the old saying? Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me?

There's no reasonable way to accept that Ryan was actually surprised by what happened against the Seahawks on Sunday afternoon. Not after it happened against the Dolphins before the bye and against the 49ers and Steelers earlier this season and so many other times over the past four seasons.

Ryan certainly doesn't have to like it and he doesn't have to accept that the team is as bad as they've looked in those games, but he can't keep pretending that he's blown away when the team lays a big fat egg on the field.

Forget the fact that it runs counter to everything Ryan has said about being more involved with the team, think about what it says about the team's chances of improvement. The only way you can be surprised about these results is if you legitimately think there's a good team here. 

It would mean watching Mark Sanchez lose nine of his last 12 games and thinking that it is just a series of coincidences instead of something having to do with the quarterback. It would mean watching Shonn Greene plod along while thinking he's just one big play away from breaking out. 

It would mean truly believing Kyle Wilson is magically going to figure out how to play balls in the air and that Bart Scott's speed is just in hiding. It would mean, essentially, believing that everything you see is just a mirage and that the real Jets exist on some other plane where they are romping to the Super Bowl. 

We'll leave it to you to decide whether or not that's the likeliest answer. 

Josh Alper is also a writer for Pro Football Talk. You can follow him on Twitter.

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