Every year, the league requires its 32 teams to conduct a one-hour mandatory media training session for all players. This year, the Jets opted to give their players something tangible that could assist them later.
Specifically, players received a wallet-sized, laminated card entitled “Media Bridges.” Per a league source, the goal was to give the players phrases that could be used to take a question they may not be comfortable answering and redirect the discussion toward another topic.
It was perhaps inevitable that the “Media Bridges” would end up in the hands of the media. And it happened quickly. The training occurred on Monday, and running back Joe McKnight gave his copy of the card to Seth Walder of the New York Daily News on Tuesday.
Making the card a bit more bizarre is the presence of a phrase that would never be used as a transitional message: “You will each receive a copy of these as you leave today.” We’re told that the card came from a batch that contained a typo, and that some of the cards with typos accidentally slipped through to the final supply.
While it all seems a little odd, every team provides media training to its players. Some provide talking points every week.
For the Jets, the goal was and is to help players deal with the media in the nation’s No. 1 media market. While NFL players are great at what they do, some aren’t very great at talking to the media.
McKnight, as it turns out, also isn’t very great when it comes to keeping the advice he has received for talking to the media from the media.