FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Bart Scott unleashed plenty of emotion as his New York Jets ousted the top-seeded New England Patriots from the AFC playoffs.
But more than an hour after the final whistle, after some of the initial reaction had cooled, the veteran linebacker remained passionate about one thing -- defending his coach.
"I love him," Scott said as he walked through the bowels of the stadium toward the bus.
And he did so on his belief in the coach. It was resolute enough, he says, to steer the Jets through a tumultuous season with a group of players that many believed would be combustible, with controversial talents like Santonio Holmes and Antonio Cromartie coming aboard.
"This week was about believing in yourself, and believing in the man next to you, and getting your coach's back, a coach that takes more flack (than he deserves)," Scott said, his voicing rising as he made his way out of the stadium. "I'm so tired of seeing people taking shots at him. It's one thing to criticize his coaching ability, his time management, but when people go at his weight, stupid stuff like that? I've never seen anyone go at Holmgren, never seen anyone go at Romeo Crennel, never seen anyone go at Andy Reid.
"But everyone thinks his weight, and that type of stuff is comical. It's free game. You don't see that on the back page about other people. What part of the game does that have to do with anything? Judge the man by what he does in his profession. I can look at anybody and find something to criticize physically."
Those feelings on Ryan were at the heart of comments Scott made directed at Patriots receiver Wes Welker, after Welker made veiled references to videos that allegedly featured Ryan and his wife, and surfaced in December.
"It was out of character," Scott continued, now on Welker's comments. "That's not what he does. It takes a lot of balls to put that out there. What happens is you put a bull's eye on yourself, everyone wants to see you put your foot in your mouth.
"And now he gets the opportunity to step out of character, tries to be us. There's enough New York Jets in the world, we don't need anyone else trying to copy our blueprint."
Finally, Scott took a look forward while commenting on Tom Brady's penchant on Sunday for seeing a phantom rusher coming.
"It's not the first time we saw him duck," Scott said. "We saw him duck the last time we were here. Ben Roethlisberger is one of the very few brave quarterbacks who'll stand in there and take a bullet for his team."