Originally posted on Larry Brown Sports  |  Last updated 1/12/12

Anonymous Jets sources ripped Mark Sanchez in a New York Daily News article published Wednesday. One of the notable criticisms of Sanchez was that he was “lazy.” Sanchez may not have grown as a quarterback, and he may be protected by the team from the media, but several Jets have disputed the accusation about his work ethic.

Center Nick Mangold says Sanchez puts in more work and more time than anybody else in the locker room. Team owner Woody Johnson said the same thing.

“He’s the first guy in the building every morning,” Johnson told MSNBC, “and the last guy to leave.”

Former Jets receiver Derrick Mason, who was traded to Houston in October, expressed similar support for Sanchez.

“I never seen the lack of effort [from Sanchez]. He worked extremely hard on the practice field. He studied his butt off and he’s a guy that wanted to get better each and every game,” Mason told FOX Sports Radio’s Andy Furman and Artrell Hawkins. “I just think he was inconsistent throughout the whole season last year.”

Mason didn’t have an explanation for Sanchez’s inconsistency, but he defended his work ethic.

If everyone says Sanchez is working hard, then why do people think he’s lazy? I think the issue is perception. When people see Sanchez posing in GQ spreads and hear him linked to women like Kate Upton, they immediately assume he’s just a partyer, even if he’s not. That’s why it’s best to wait until you’ve achieved high levels of success over several years in the NFL before you begin expanding your profile off the field.

This article first appeared on Larry Brown Sports and was syndicated with permission.

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