Jets’ Mark Sanchez said he had headset issues during loss

January 24, 2011 0

Quarterback Mark Sanchez had problems communicating with the New York Jets’ coaching staff Sunday night because the headset he was wearing malfunctioned during a 24-19 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers.

“It never really happened for that long of a time,” Sanchez said. “We had to use a walkie-talkie at one point and [offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer] was just yelling calls in at one point. It was just another challenge, and we almost overcame it.”

The primary headset used to communicate with the quarterback went out after the first possession, and the backup unit stopped functioning in the fourth quarter as the Jets were attempting to convert on a first-and-goal from the Steelers’ 2 with roughly eight minutes left in the game and down 24-10.

Sanchez had to run over to the sideline to talk to Schottenheimer. He also needed to yell out the calls to others on the offense as the Steelers fans at Heinz Field roared over the confusion.

“The problem was the headset kept going out multiple times during the game,” Sanchez said, “so I had to run over and get a couple calls, piece together some calls on the headset that came in broken up. It was one of those things we were fighting through. I was proud of our guys for trying to piece it together.”

Jets tight end Dustin Keller said the offense had to rush a few times because of the time it took to get the calls communicated. On that goal-line series when the problems were magnified, the Jets turned the ball over on downs after failing to gain 2 yards in four tries.

“It was really too bad because we had opportunities,” Sanchez said. “And I came up short and we did too.”

Jane McManus is a columnist and reporter for ESPNNewYork.com.

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