Following long absence, Jets LB C.J. Mosley ready to 'make sure they respect the name again'

In case you've forgotten about him, C.J. Mosley is ready to reintroduce himself in emphatic fashion.

Having played just two games since he joined the New York Jets ahead of the 2019 season, the former Ravens Pro Bowl linebacker knows the critics have gathered, but he's set on reminding them of who he is and what he can do on the football field.

"There's a little added chip [on his shoulder] because you've always got your fans that are going to heckle," Mosley said Thursday, via ESPN’s Rich Cimini. "When I get back on the field, I definitely want to make sure they respect the name again."

Mosley's introduction to New York came via a mammoth five-year, $85 million deal and so far it's seen him play in but two games and tally nine tackles across two seasons.

In 2019, Mosley was sidelined by a lingering groin injury. He played in the season opener and was out until Week 7, but a 33-0 loss to the Patriots on Oct. 21, 2019, would prove to be the last the Jets would see of Mosley on a field.

After that trying debut season, Mosley opted out of the 2020 campaign due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mosley, 28, is ultra-confident there will be no rust upon his return.

"Yeah, I don't have any doubts in myself," said Mosley amid Jets organized team activities. "I mean, [Rob Gronkowski] took two years off [one, actually] and won a Super Bowl, so it is what it is. I'm here, so we'll let the play do the talking."

While Mosley's assured his play won't miss a beat, he certainly missed some comings and goings while he was away.

He missed 30 of the final 32 games of the Adam Gase era and now the defensive-minded Robert Saleh is at the helm. There's also a new future face of the franchise in Zach Wilson, the No. 2 overall pick of the 2021 NFL Draft. Wilson replaces Sam Darnold, who was oh-so briefly Mosley's quarterback.

But Mosley's back and in line to essentially reintroduce himself to a Jets fanbase that only truly knows him as a highly paid linebacker who's never been around, as opposed to the roving dynamo who had more than 100 tackles in all but one of his first five campaigns.

"When you're out for a while, you're always in your head, thinking, 'When I get back, how's it going to feel? Am I going to be able to move like I used to?'" Mosley said. "After finishing this week, I feel great."

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