NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) - "I'm a thankful person."
That's the message that came through loud and clear when Jets legend Joe Namath chatted with 1010 WINS' Rebecca Granet about football, fans, tailgating, favorite foods and more.
Rebecca Granet: "Is there nothing like a Jets fan?"
Joe Namath: "You know, this is the thing. Players would change. Ownership even changes. But the fans have been loyal since the Titans moved over to Long Island and Long Island out to Jersey. The fans, jersey fans, the Jets fans, this is what it's about, yeah."
RG: "Does it ever get tiring for you when you see a Namath jersey? Somebody, no matter what age, wearing that jersey?"
JN: "I'm a thankful person, honest to God. I thank the Lord. I'm tickled. I feel the positive vibes, the way I was raised, I have respect, compassion and empathy, I'm a lucky guy. I get the feedback from the fans around Jersey, New York, wherever we go. It's thrilling."
RG: "Do you tailgate?"
JN: "I do. Yes, I do. I cook out. Tailgate, I have, but these days, if I go into a tailgate situation, I end up having to throw the ball, and be playing in the games and stuff like that, you know. It's an atmosphere where there are a lot of great fans and it's hard to focus on the cooking part."
RG: "You're not sitting on the sidelines, what's that about?"
JN: "No I like to be active."
RG: "So if you had to pick a food, a food that you like to eat before a game, while you're watching the Jets, what do you like to eat?"
JN: "Man, I'm from Western PA to start with. Kielbasa, sausage, hot dogs, hamburgers, whatever, you name it. Of course, you can't go wrong with chicken. It depends on how you do it. Back in Western PA my mother had that special touch, and I'm not that good a cook, but I get along all right."
RG: "Talk to me about your rapid cooker. Your cousin created a rapid cooker, right?"
JN: "Yes, yes, we started a few years ago with this. We found that there's a way to - we made a terrific cooker that's stainless steel that you can take tailgating, going fishing, camping, whatever. It's not heavy, it's 39 pounds, and it gets up to 1400 degrees. So we know that searing in those juices in the meats with the high temperatures and then cooking it the way you like it. It's very versatile, it's quality."
RG: "Let's talk about the Jets a little. What do you think?"
JN: "Well, since General Manager [Mike] Maccagnan took over and Coach [Todd] Bowles, they got together, they brought in some free agents that immediately helped change the kind of team this is. The defensive backs that they brought in immediately gave some support to this front defensive line we have. Because that's a special front defensive line, with David Harris, our linebacking core, they're darn good too. So the defense is really upgraded. And also Maccagnan brought in Brandon Marshall, which is a big help. Being a Crimson Tide-r, from Alabama, whenever you take that offensive line, and improve it, and the offense can't do much without an offensive line. We brought [James] Carpenter in from Seattle to play next to D'Brickashaw [Ferguson] and next, of course, to our setter. Hey we got a veteran line up there now.... The offensive line has improved big time so Chris Ivory has some place to go. Our running backs are good... . This is corny, but in the football world, if you're playing, if you're getting ready, you're focused on what you have in hand right now. If you think that way, it is actually one game at a time. You never know if it's going to be your last game. You never know what you're gonna end up down the season, which game was the big thing, we coulda, woulda, shoulda - bull. Each game is the biggest game of the season, man."
RG: "Where will you be or where do you like to be when you're watching a game?"
JN: "Home. Watching on television. Watching on replays. Being able to get things out of the kitchen, you know. It's fun. When I go to the stadium, it's a joy to be around the energy, the excitement, the fans, the people and all, but I don't get to see the game much. When I'm at the stadium - 'Hey how you doing? Yes, sir' -you know, I'm visiting a little bit. I don't get to see the entire game, or any of the replays hardly. I know we have the big screen, but I can really focus on the game. And I watch every Jets game. You're able to do that these days, no matter where you are."
RG: "You do? You watch?"
JN: "Oh yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. So if I'm not in the stadium, I'm at home watching."
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