Jets expecting to turn it around with Mangold

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Jets expecting to turn it around with Mangold

By A. Sherrod Blakely
CSNNE.com Celtics Insider
Follow @sherrodbcsn
FOXBORO Vince Wilfork expects the struggling New York Jets offense to be better on Sunday for one reason: Nick Mangold.

The All-Pro center who has been out recently with an ankle injury, is expected back in time for Sunday's game against the New England Patriots. But Wilfork wouldn't mind seeing the 6-foot-4, 300-pound center take another week off.

When asked if he wanted to see Mangold play, Wilfork responded, "No. I don't."

Wilfork added, "He's probably one of the best offensive lineman in the game. He's definitely a leader on the team for them. I know they'd love for him to play."

And that may be why Jets head coach Rex Ryan, never one to lack confidence, is pretty sure his team won't have a repeat of last Sunday's 34-17 debacle against Baltimore.

Ryan didn't need to see the video of the loss to the Ravens to realize that not having Mangold in the middle was a significant factor in his team losing for the second week in a row.

"You take out the best center in football -- no offense to (Jets reserve center) Colin Baxter -- but there's only one Nick Mangold in this league," Ryan said. "When he went out, that was a huge loss to us. With Vince (Wilfork) and all those guys, we need Nick."

Added Wilfork: "He gives them a spark. There's absolutely a difference when he's in and not in. I expect for him to be there (on Sunday), get things going and get his team off to a good start."

Mangold was drafted by the Jets with the 29th overall pick in the 2006 NFL draft, the lone center taken in the first round that year.

A. Sherrod Blakely can be reached at sblakely@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Sherrod on Twitter at http:twitter.comsherrodbcsn

Kraft won't hold a grudge over Deflategate, but he also won't forget it

Kraft won't hold a grudge over Deflategate, but he also won't forget it

Haters gonna hate. Robert Kraft knows that, and he's not going to hold a grudge because of it. But he won't forget, either.

The New England Patriots owner appeared on the latest episode of HBO's "Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel" for an interview with Andrea Kremer that aired Tuesday night, and he was as candid as any member of the organization has been throughout the Deflategate saga.

“I really don’t hold grudges,” Kraft admitted in the interview, per WEEI. “I mean, I remember everything, but I move on. ... Envy and jealousy are incurable diseases. The haters still hate. And I understand it, and we’ll do our best to keep them in that position.”

And while Kraft isn't holding grudges, he still recognizes the negative impact the controversy left on Tom Brady's pristine reputation.

“He’s just not the greatest quarterback in the history of the NFL,” Kraft began. “He’s an amazing human being. And is genuine. And as nice as everybody thinks he is, he’s nicer. And to see anyone attack him as an individual or his integrity. And that just wasn’t fair.”

Bennett says he is 'just chilling' and hasn't given free agency 'a ton of thought'

Bennett says he is 'just chilling' and hasn't given free agency 'a ton of thought'

Will Martellus Bennett be back with the Patriots next season?

NFL Network's Ian Rapoport says it's "a real possibility" Bennett leaves given the asking price and potential offers.

Less than an hour later, the unrestricted free agent sent out a tweet responding to speculation about his future.

Bennett, who will 30 years old in March, had seven touchdowns in 19 games in his first season with the New England Patriots.