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Old 08-05-2005, 11:18 PM  
Fire Me Boy! Fire Me Boy! is offline
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NY TIMES: Jets' Blaylock Is a Backup Always Ready to Move Up

http://www.nytimes.com/2005/08/05/sp...P++OxZhrijdb2g


Jets' Blaylock Is a Backup Always Ready to Move Up

Last Halloween, Blaylock attended a party, but it was not one of those V.I.P.-room bashes where the Cristal is cold and the women are hot. The guest list included parents and preteens affiliated with a youth football team that Blaylock sponsored in Kansas City during his four years with the Chiefs.

Blaylock went dressed in a wide-brimmed hat, a black suit with white pinstripes, a white dress shirt, a red tie and black shoes.

"I went as an old-school gangster," Blaylock said. Wearing a wide-brimmed grin, he added, "As far as doing anything really outrageous, that's about it."

In one respect, Blaylock's choice of Halloween attire was fitting. Curtis Martin's new backup is a throwback, conjuring a time when the bad guys wore black and professional athletes were the good guys.

"You've got guys that have to have the attention and camera time and things like that," Blaylock said. "As far as doing things in the community, I'm open to things like that. But I don't need all the TV time. I'm not a guy that has to have a lot of attention."

If Blaylock wanted to get in touch with his inner narcissist, there was no better time than this past winter. He was a free agent coming off a 2004 season in which he stepped out of the shadow of Priest Holmes, a perennial 1,000-yard rusher. When Holmes went down with an injury in November, Blaylock averaged 77.8 yards a game in five starts.

In his first appearance in an N.F.L. starring role, Blaylock ran for 186 yards on 33 carries at New Orleans. "He was a tremendous special teams player for them, and then when he was called upon to start, the way he performed caught a lot of people's interest," Jets Coach Herman Edwards said.

On Thursday, the Jets practiced at night after attending a luncheon during the day. Edwards rested Martin, which gave Blaylock his first chance to show his new teammates what he is capable of doing. On the first team's initial drive, he burst through the middle, untouched, for a 20-yard score.

"Tonight I think he kind of showed the offense what type of player he is when he has the ball in his hands," Edwards said. "He made a little bit of a statement just by the way he ran."

When the free-agent wooing process got under way, Blaylock admitted, he envisioned seeing his name atop some marquee. He was certain his days of being an understudy were over.

"You always think about being a starter," he said. "Everybody wants to have their shot."

Then he visited the Jets' training complex and met with Edwards and the offensive coordinator Mike Heimerdinger. They had him at "We want you here."

Blaylock was drawn to the Jets for the same reason he was drawn to football over track and field when he arrived on the campus of Stephen F. Austin University in Nacogdoches, Tex.

Of course, it is nice to be the man. But the 5-foot-9-inch Blaylock has enough self-possession to realize that what really makes him happy is being part of something bigger than himself.

"What they were saying, the atmosphere here, it just felt good to me," Blaylock said. "I knew it was where I belonged."

He signed with the Jets in March.

"He took a leap of faith," Edwards said. Blaylock, who will turn 26 this month, looked at it as staying grounded.

Shortly after becoming a Jet, Blaylock swung by the Hofstra University training complex to work out. He stepped on a treadmill in the weight room and there, drawing a sweat on the machine next to him, was Martin.

They exchanged pleasantries and telephone numbers, these two men who are not wired to treat spring as a break.

"Derrick's just like Curtis," Edwards said. "He's a low-maintenance player. He doesn't have an ego."

The other day after a practice at the Jets' training camp, a man heading toward the parking lot holding the hand of a small boy was overheard harrumphing, "These professional ballplayers, they're all jerks."

Blaylock hears variations on the same theme when he interacts with the public.

"After I meet people they'll say, 'You don't seem like the normal N.F.L. player 'cause you're so cool,' " Blaylock said.

He takes seriously his opportunity to change impressions - most of all the belief that you are nothing if you are not a starter.

EXTRA POINTS

Coach HermAN Edwards's wife, Lia, who is in the ninth month of a high-risk pregnancy, attended the afternoon practice Wednesday. Lia, who has Type-1 diabetes, is looking at next Tuesday as her possible delivery date, Herman Edwards said. He added that the players were begging her to have the baby in the afternoon, believing it might prompt Edwards to call off the afternoon practice. "Not a chance," he said, laughing.

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Old 08-06-2005, 03:58 AM   #2
Bob Dole Bob Dole is offline
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Bob Dole loves to repeat Bob Dole.

We're going to miss him a lot on special teams, and if he gets a chance to start he'll be a 1500 yard back.
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Old 08-06-2005, 05:45 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobzen
Bob Dole loves to repeat Bob Dole.

We're going to miss him a lot on special teams, and if he gets a chance to start he'll be a 1500 yard back.
Bob_Dole is full of horse dookey. A small back like that has to be something really special to be a starter in the NFL. Even Priest is finding out what the constant pounding can do to a small body.
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Old 08-06-2005, 07:21 AM   #4
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Blayock is a good kid and I wish the best, but I want HIM CRUSHED ON OPENING DAY!
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Old 08-06-2005, 09:52 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobzen
We're going to miss him a lot on special teams, and if he gets a chance to start he'll be a 1500 yard back.
If Blaylock got a chance to start, he'd be hurt after two or three games.
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Old 08-06-2005, 09:54 AM   #6
shaneo69 shaneo69 is offline
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Quote: "Last Halloween, Blaylock attended a party, but it was not one of those V.I.P.-room bashes where the Cristal is cold and the women are hot."

Can anyone from NY tell me what Cristal is? I guess that hasn't made it St. Louis yet.
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Old 08-06-2005, 09:59 AM   #7
Katipan Katipan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shaneo69
Can anyone from NY tell me what Cristal is? I guess that hasn't made it St. Louis yet.
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Old 08-06-2005, 10:00 AM   #8
shaneo69 shaneo69 is offline
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champagne
Aha. Thanks.
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Old 08-06-2005, 10:40 AM   #9
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Old 08-06-2005, 10:43 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobzen
Bob Dole loves to repeat Bob Dole.

We're going to miss him a lot on special teams, and if he gets a chance to start he'll be a 1500 yard back.
Too small to be everydown back.
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Old 08-06-2005, 10:44 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shaneo69
Can anyone from NY tell me what Cristal is? I guess that hasn't made it St. Louis yet.
No Cristal in Nellyville??? Perish the thought.

Shane must still be rockin' the Nessy Yac.

Maybe if instead of seeing it in print "Cristal," you got the mental image of a young buck on Cribs opening his SubZero to show you the 'Cree-Stahhhll."
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Old 08-06-2005, 11:16 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Baby Lee
No Cristal in Nellyville??? Perish the thought.

Shane must still be rockin' the Nessy Yac.

Maybe if instead of seeing it in print "Cristal," you got the mental image of a young buck on Cribs opening his SubZero to show you the 'Cree-Stahhhll."
Okay, I was a little confused by the original Cristal reference, but now I am just totally lost.
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Old 08-06-2005, 11:34 AM   #13
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Okay, I was a little confused by the original Cristal reference, but now I am just totally lost.
Don't worry, Matlock is on soon.
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Old 08-06-2005, 11:55 AM   #14
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Don't worry, Matlock is on soon.
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