For most of the week, the New York Jets have avoided running their mouths regarding the Pittsburgh Steelers.
But they couldn’t make it to Sunday without giving at least one member of the team a tweak.
Appearing on SNY’s Loudmouths with Adam Schein and Chris Carlin, Jets cornerback Antonio Cromartie was asked whether Steelers receiver Hines Ward is a dirty player.
“I know for a fact that he will hit you while you’re not looking,” Cromartie said. “I don’t think he’s man enough to hit you while you’re looking at him.”
Cromartie’s comments echo something said Thursday by Jets defensive coordinator Mike Pettine regarding Ward.
“Our guys I think called him the toughest guy in the league when nobody’s looking,” Pettine said, per Ian Begley of ESPNNewYork.com.
Ward has a reputation for throwing crushing blindside blocks. Before the Jets played the Steelers in December, the Jets showed the players a reel of Ward’s no-look hard knocks.
“I think our guys have played against them enough to know what he’s all about,” Pettine said.
It’s not nearly as strong as the stuff that came from the Jets before facing the Patriots, but it’s better than nothing.
And with more than 45 hours remaining until the game starts, there’s still plenty of time for the talk to heat up.