There were a lot of ugly moments during the Jets’ meltdown in Miami Sunday, but one stood above the rest.
Santonio Holmes, after barking at a teammate in the huddle, was pulled from the game late in the fourth quarter. He sat on the bench with his helmet off, not even paying attention as his team’s season ended.
After the game, one unnamed Jets teammate said Holmes “quit” on the team. And it didn’t start this week.
“He quit,” the player told Jenny Vrentas of the Newark Star-Ledger. “It’s happened for the past two to three weeks. It’s happened all season.”
Offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer apparently made the call to take Holmes out.
“I looked out there, and I was wondering why he wasn’t out there myself,” coach Rex Ryan said. “I didn’t bench Santonio. You’ll have to ask him.”
It looks like Ryan is in self-preservation mode, trying to maintain his relationship with Holmes. Multiple players told Vrentas that Holmes “moped” throughout the game and often ignored Mark Sanchez. One player already told Holmes to get off the field if he wasn’t going to help the team.
“I’ll tell you what, it’s tough for guys to follow a captain that kind of behaves in that manner,” LaDainian Tomlinson said. “When you’re a captain, guys are looking at you, you’ve got to lead by example. You’ve got to play your tail off until the last play. And when that don’t happen, you have guys looking at you in a way that captains shouldn’t be looked at.”
Tomlinson said that guys were unhappy with Holmes’ demeanor. That demeanor didn’t improve much after the game.
Holmes made it clear he wasn’t happy with offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer, saying it wasn’t his decision if Schottenheimer returned.
Holmes was then asked about his future with the team.
“Thank you guys,” Holmes said before abruptly ending his press conference.
It’s going to be fun offseason in New York.