September 13th, 2010
06:34 PM ET

Reporter says she accepts Jets owner's apology

[Updated, 6:34 p.m.] The owner of the New York Jets has apologized to a TV Azteca reporter following allegations that Jets personnel harassed her at practice this weekend, and she has accepted, the reporter told CNN's Rick Sanchez on Monday.

The NFL says it is investigating media reports that Jets players behaved inappropriately - including allegedly hooting and hollering at her in their locker room - when Ines Sainz visited the team Saturday to interview Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez for the Mexican TV network.

Sainz said Monday that Jets owner Woody Johnson called her to apologize. ESPNNewYork.com reported earlier Monday that Johnson said he offered an "open apology" to her.

"I accept the apologies, and I said thanks to him for the concern and all the rest of the team, because he promised that he is going to make everybody on his team respect … women," Sainz said on CNN's "Rick's List." "And I think the important point is that women deserve respect in any profession, so I think it's going to happen."

Sainz said that although she told Johnson not to worry, she did feel a little uncomfortable because of players' behavior in the locker room, and that she thinks the behavior was unacceptable.

"I think that it’s not good that this kind of thing happened, and it mustn't happen anymore. I'm agreeing with the idea that it's good that everybody knows that a woman or a man deserve the same treatment in the locker room," Sainz said.

According to the New York Post, Sainz claims that while she was standing on the sidelines at practice, Jets coach Rex Ryan and a member of his staff overthrew passes so they would land near her.

Then, when she entered the locker room to interview Mark Sanchez, she said she heard players discussing her.

"I try not to hear anything, try not to pay attention. My cameraman told me, 'Don't look on the right, don't look at the left," she said. "But I really feel the noise and all the environment was talking about me."

She said she never felt she was in danger in the locker room. Later, she said, other reporters said they heard the players say things about her that she didn’t hear.

"One colleague – one female colleague – came with me and [told] me, 'I'm so sorry. It mustn't happen. It's not OK,'" Sainz said. "So I tried to calm her. … I really know that she [heard] something that I didn't hear, and the rest of the media … heard things that I didn't really hear. So I really appreciate the concern about it."

[Original post, 9:58 a.m.] The New York Jets think this is their year. They were one game from the Super Bowl last season, were just featured on HBO’s NFL documentary series “Hard Knocks” and their coach Rex Ryan is on the cover of this week’s New York Times magazine and seems to love putting himself and his team in the spotlight.

So you’d think that with their season starting tonight with the first game in their brand new stadium, on Monday Night Football no less, they’d be thrilled to be on the front page of the New York tabloid papers. But today’s publicity isn't the kind of publicity the Jets really want - the league is investigating whether coach Ryan, a member of his staff, and some of his players behaved inappropriately toward TV Azteca reporter Ines Sainz.

Sainz, working with one of the most popular Mexican TV networks, was at the Jets camp Saturday to interview quarterback Mark Sanchez.

According to the New York Post, Sainz claims Ryan and assistant coach Dennis Thurman overthrew passes so they would land near her. The Post also says Jets players allegedly hooted and hollered with Sainz walked in the locker room.

Sainz, former Miss Spain, tweeted that she was “dying of embarrassment” according the Post.

Sainz' Twitter page

TV Azteca reporter Ines Sainz pictured during the 2007 Super Bowl.

Sainz, being her own Monday morning quarterback, addressed the concerns in an interview with a TV Azteca reporter, saying while she was embarrassed, she didn't realize it was going to become that big of a deal.

Sainz told her colleague that she did notice that footballs were being thrown her way but, “to be quite honest, it didn’t bother me… I took it as a joke, and none of the footballs actually hit me.”

“It was definitely a joking tone, very amicable," Sainz said, regarding the tone Sanchez had with her. “I wasn’t offended.”

But she did say in the interview that she didn't hear everything said about her - and apparently several other members of the media took the interactions much more seriously. She added perhaps they heard something she hadn't.

“I was surprised to wake up on Sunday and have a call from the NFL , saying that they wanted to talk to me about what had happened at the Jets; and I asked… what happened?" Sainz told TV Azteca. "And they said well there is a pretty powerful accusation of harassment and then it was at that point I realized the magnitude of what had happened. “

The NFL says it’s investigating and The Association for Women in Sports Media says the Jets and the league have been responsive to their concerns. They also say on their website that they plan to hold an educational session for the Jets this week or next.

The Jets are one of the favorites to go the Super Bowl this season, but the New York Daily News’s Gary Myers looks at how this incident could derail the team if they’re not careful.

soundoff (861 Responses)
  1. steeve-o

    No doubt they got this idea from that Corona commercial, where the beach football throwers did the same thing.
    Anyhow, NFL players are being held to stricter codes of conduct these days, regardless if they're animals on the field, they're supposed to be gentlemen to non-NFL players off the field.
    Case in point, Ochocinco pinched Belichicks butt at the Sunday game, Bill was perturbed but I bet 85 isn't facing any fines.

    September 13, 2010 at 12:30 pm | Report abuse |
  2. koolaak

    I net she liked and likes what happened to her.

    September 13, 2010 at 12:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • koolaak

      Sorry, I meant to say I bet.

      September 13, 2010 at 12:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • koolaak

      Ines, for the love of God, give me a break,and say you love attention and would do anything for getting more of it.

      September 13, 2010 at 12:35 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Jacob

    AMAZINGLY HOT WOMAN WANDERS AROUND AREA FILLED WITH JACKED UP DUDES WITH HUGE EGOS, THEY REACT, NEWS AT ELEVEN!

    September 13, 2010 at 12:31 pm | Report abuse |
  4. bama

    A bunch of football players and a beautiful women. She really didn't think anything about it., until someone brought it to her attention. Come on! Did the other reporters feel left out.

    September 13, 2010 at 12:31 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Jason

    It's a locker room. Women should not be allowed in a males locker room, period. If a man was in a woman's locker room this would make national news because a woman's rights were abused.

    And now a few women are trying to become refs in the NFL? What do you think is going to happen. I'm all for equal rights people...but let's try to make those rights truly EQUAL! Women, stop asking for more rights if you can't stand the environment that comes along with those rights.

    September 13, 2010 at 12:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • JJmedia

      Wow that actually made a lot of sense to me, but you are correct it comes with the territory so deal with it...

      September 13, 2010 at 1:32 pm | Report abuse |
  6. bayoujet

    Ok, she is quite beautiful, and is apprently proud of it, what with being Mrs. Spain. If we are just dealing with "hooting and hollering", then this is a non-story. And the stuff about overthrowing footbals to check out a pretty girl, uh – that is nothing new. A toy was invented for that very purpose. Its called the frisbee.

    September 13, 2010 at 12:33 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Joe

    Really? Maybe the players should file a harassment claim against her because they are guaranteed a right to privacy in the lockeroom. Don't get me wrong. I believe women can do any job that they want to do. But does she really think she was hired as a football analyst because of her knowledge of the sport? No. She was hired because she looks a lot hotter than Terry Bradshaw in a low-cut shirt (see the accompanied photo if you want proof). Besides, who says that the players were hooting and hollering at her? Sounds like somebody wants a little 15-minutes of fame.

    September 13, 2010 at 12:33 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Chaps

    Seriously, for those defending her, just go google her pics for two seconds and you'll see, she wouldn't have a leg to stand on. If ANY woman came around dressed the way she does and looks the way she does and most importantly, acts the way she does, than I and any other red blooded male would be gawking and "cat calling" her. I'm not saying that I'm defending the Jets players but seriously, if your going to go into a locker room full of young guys and not expect that than your an idiot!

    September 13, 2010 at 12:34 pm | Report abuse |
  9. HELP

    Hey guys, will you visit SaveStan.ORG a friend of mine with 4 young babies is fighting for his life…… thanks.

    September 13, 2010 at 12:34 pm | Report abuse |
  10. MXD

    To SERIALMOM – Do you realized that you just argued (poorly) BOTH sides of this position? First you say (for some reason) that most of us don't realize that she was probably hired by a man (wrong – we ALL realize that) and that she was hired because she's beautiful and so that men will want to watch her (also wrong – of COURSE we realize that.). Then you change course, saying that football players should be professionals (they ARE, at FOOTBALL. I doubt their contracts stipulate they can't flirt with a pretty female reporter), and that it's uncomfortable for the reporter to be treated this way (wrong again – this female said she didn't mind at all). Go back and re-read the story. You're living in fantasy land.

    September 13, 2010 at 12:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jerrykings

      If people are not reading the full report, none the less your comment, don't even bother...

      September 14, 2010 at 10:18 am | Report abuse |
  11. Michael

    OMG I did a Google search on her, and yes, she it HOT. Men have killed for the likes of her. I'm sure she got the job only because of her reporting skills. I am going to have to think a while about what does one expect when a hot chick walks into a professional football locker room.

    September 13, 2010 at 12:37 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Melissa

    Take them for all they are worth, honey. Cha Ching all the way to the bank, baby!! Stupid men just don't get it. News flash fellas – it's not 1950 anymore...grow up and shut up!!! Always thinking with the wrong heads....

    September 13, 2010 at 12:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • ok

      She wasnt harrassed! The NFL called HER about it, she never claimed that she was harrassed!

      September 13, 2010 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sam

      “It was definitely a joking tone, very amicable," Sainz said, regarding the tone Sanchez had with her. “I wasn’t offended.”

      No harassment occurred. Alleged victim was totally okay with the way she was treated, understood that boys were joking around.

      Should she sue over that? What exactly are the damages? How was she harmed if she wasn't even offended?
      Nay, this is just muckraking by reporters in need of a story. Nothing happened.

      September 13, 2010 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Bill

    Yea she's wearing this shirt so I notice your shoes. This is a joke. Stay out of the lockerroom honey.

    September 13, 2010 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Elmob13

    Grow up boys – what there is NO need for is Women sports reporters!!! No one in their right mind wants to hear their opinion! First off, If she was fat or ugly she wouldn't even have the job and secondly, what guy wants to have a women interviewing them in the lockerroom after a game when they are all sweaty and smelly??? There is no need for any reporters IN the lockerroom! Give the job to someone who you can depend on knowing the sport and being able to report it, not the "hot" reports who read from cue cards!

    September 13, 2010 at 12:42 pm | Report abuse |
  15. ok

    “I was surprised to wake up on Sunday and have a call from the NFL , saying that they wanted to talk to me about what had happened at the Jets; and I asked… what happened?" Sainz told TV Azteca. "And they said well there is a pretty powerful accusation of harassment and then it was at that point I realized the magnitude of what had happened. “

    She didnt know she was harrassed!! So who is claiming harrassment?? Besides, throwing footballs near her is NOT harrassment. If she was uncomfortable with the footballs being thrown in her direction, then she would have said something or moved...right? I can see where the hotting and hollering could have been uncomfortable, but still, she said nothing to anyone about it. Someone else is making this claim and bringing heat to the Jets (I am not a fan, BTW). If she would have agreed with the NFL when they called, I can see the point, but she was unaware of this "harrassment".

    September 13, 2010 at 12:44 pm | Report abuse |
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