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Christian Hackenberg on criticism: ‘I don’t pay attention to it’

Christian Hackenberg has had a rough go of it during the New York Jets offseason program. While he’s earned some praise from the coaching staff, it hasn’t been a smooth process. But to hear it from the second-year signal-caller, he only cares about what the team thinks, everything else is just noise.

“I don’t pay attention to [media reports]. You guys have a job to do, and I understand that and also have a job to do,” Hackenberg said Thursday at his locker following the Jets’ final minicamp practice, via Pro Football Talk. “Ultimately, I have to continue to trust in myself, trust in the situation I’m in and continue to get better and continue to grow. That’s my goal and that’s all I try to do. I’m a low-key guy. I really don’t see much, but that’s what I’m trying to do, and whatever it is I can’t control it.

Hackenberg became the source of memes and other assorted Internet mockery after reports emerged that the 22-year-old signal-caller was airmailing passes so badly the ball hit reporters.

And then, making matters worse, footage surfaced of one such occurrence.

Hackenberg has been roundly criticized throughout his early NFL career, with some arguing the Jets wasted a second-round selection on him in the 2016 NFL Draft.

Still, Hackenberg insists he doesn’t waste any time worrying about outside chatter.

“… I think ultimately in my opinion, the only people who’s opinions I really care about are the people I’m involved with every day and know exactly what’s going on in this building as an offense and as a team. My quarterback coach specifically. If those guys say something to me, I’m going to take that to heart because they know exactly what’s going on, every detail of it. That’s how I look at it.”

It’s obviously a good thing Hackenberg appears to have — or at least claims to have — thick skin. Playing in the New York market in front of the city’s patented cutthroat sports media, he’s most certainly going to need it … – especially if things continue in such a manner.

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