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Start to Google "Mark Sanchez" and before you're even finished typing, the options pop up. Would you like to read about Mark Sanchez and Eva Longoria? How about Mark Sanchez and Kate Upton?
Sanchez is as famous for his life off the field as he is for his accomplishments on it as the quarterback of the New York Jets.
Those would include trips to the AFC Championship Game in his first two seasons in the NFL. To get there, he won four games on the road, beating teams led by quarterbacks Philip Rivers, Peyton Manning and Tom Brady.
But those games have been largely forgotten, buried under an avalanche of criticism from fans, the New York media and even some of his teammates (who chose to stay anonymous).
If Sanchez is bothered by that scrutiny, he doesn't easily show it.
"It's every year," he said. "It makes this position fun. It's something you sign up for. It makes it exciting and hopefully it'll bring out my best. I'm confident it will."
He sounds like a man who's become accustomed to life in the spotlight. At 6-foot-2 and 225 pounds, and with looks that have landed him on the cover of GQ, perhaps it's inevitable that the gossip columns would be interested in who he's taking to dinner. He's accepted that he's just as likely to read about himself in TMZ as he is in the sports sections of New York's daily papers.
"That's just the way it goes playing quarterback in New York. That's about as big as it gets," he said. "So it's important to stay grounded and keep good people around you. Really focus on football when it's time for the season and do everything outside of football to keep your life in order. Have good people around you. I'm confident that I have that right now."
The lasting memory for the Jets' 2011 season will be the way it ended. On New Year's Day in Miami, receiver Santonio Holmes was benched in the fourth quarter of a loss to the Dolphins - for fighting with a teammate. Sanchez and Holmes were said to be barely on speaking terms by the end of the year.
Respected veteran running back LaDainian Tomlinson called the locker room issues the worst he'd seen.
Sanchez, though, says those issues are a thing of the past.
"This is a tight-knit group. I think Cortland [where the Jets hold training camp] had a lot to do with that," he said. "We had a great camp. These guys are just chomping at the bit here to get started. We're thrilled about this first opportunity. We know it's going to take our best effort, but no question this is a much better football team. And that's the most important thing: We're a team."
Part of that team, of course, is Tim Tebow, the most popular backup quarterback in football. Tebow's army of supporters will surely be out in full force after Sanchez's first incompletion Sunday, but coach Rex Ryan said his starter has handled the situation perfectly.
"Mark's been great. He had to learn a brand new offense so I think that's where his time was consumed, it wasn't in the fact that we brought in Tim Tebow," Ryan said. "Tim Tebow is obviously an immensely popular young man, and he can't help that, and that's a great thing, not a bad thing. He's a good football player, and a tremendous person. Mark will be the first to tell you, he's happy that Tim's on our football team."
Sanchez lives up to his coach's billing when talking about Tebow.
"He's been great," Sanchez said. "He fits in really well, whether it's in the weight room, quarterback room, offensive room, on the field, off the field. He's been great to be around and an overall great addition to our team."
As part of new offensive coordinator Tony Sparano's attack, the Jets are expected to use Tebow as the Wildcat quarterback. While plans have been kept closely under wraps, it wouldn't be a surprise to see that formation 10 or 15 times a game.
That's 10 or 15 times Sanchez won't be taking the snap, but again he takes the high road.
"Tim's a heck of an athlete. Any time the ball's in his hands, he can create," Sanchez said. "We'll see how that goes, but we're all excited to get out there and play."
Sanchez signed a three-year contract extension in the offseason worth more than $40 million, a clear indication the Jets believe he can be more than just a game manager entering his fourth season.
"As a rookie, he was looked at as a weakness on our football team, and I said there's going to be a day where he's looked at as the strength of our team and not a weakness," Ryan told New York reporters this week. "I think that day is right now."
Sanchez, 25, threw for career highs in completions (308), yards (3,474) and touchdowns (26), but also turned the ball over 26 times and played poorly during a three-game losing streak at the end of the season that knocked the Jets down to 8-8 and out of the playoffs.
Still, Sanchez is just the fifth quarterback in the Super Bowl era to win 30 games, including playoffs, in his first three seasons.
He's got a career record of 31-22 (again including postseason) and a 5-1 mark against the Bills.
"He came in last year and led his team to a victory here on our home field when we had a lot of momentum going," Bills safety George Wilson said.
"We know he's a winner and that he's capable of getting the job done and we have to be at the top of our game when we play him on Sunday."

email: jskurski@buffnews.com