Season Comes to Fitting End for Ryan, Jets

Season Comes to Fitting End for Ryan, Jets

Chris Dell'Amore

From August to January, the sight of Rex Ryan bragging and boasting about what­ever snack he was clogging his remaining functional arteries with along with empty promises about a Super Bowl was one of the most irritating things I have witnessed in my life as a sports fan. Ryan could be considered the equivalent of a mosquito that would appear anytime that you turned on a television or radio.

Well, Coach Ryan, it’s time to put your foot – whichever foot you prefer – in your mouth for at least a couple of months. Sportswriters would be hard-pressed to find a team in the history of college or professional athletics that talked so much “smack” as the Jets did this past season de­spite not having won as much as a division­al title. Not only have the Jets failed to win the AFC East since 2002, but they can now rest comfortably knowing that they possess the longest active streak of consecutive seasons without a Super Bowl appearance at 43.

Don’t worry, Coach Ryan, you have plenty of time to win a ring, or so you claim. The Jets have their jobs cut out for them this off-season as cornerback An­tonio Cromartie, wide receivers Braylon Edwards and Santonio Holmes, defensive end Shaun Ellis and kicker Nick Folk are free agents.

Apparently those big question marks don’t seem to scare Ryan as he decided to open his notorious mouth one more time in a post-game conference after the loss to the Steelers: “I don’t think you want to play the Jets next year. That’s just my personal opinion.” Really?

Mark Sanchez is possibly undergoing shoulder surgery and the combined age of Jason Taylor and LaDainian Tomlinson is almost greater than Sanchez’s 75.3 passer rating this season. The duo of Edwards and Holmes, arguably the best receiving tandem in the NFL, was on the end of 14 of Sanchez’s 17 touchdowns this season. Should the Jets fail to re-sign both play­ers, the 22nd ranked passing offense in the NFL could plummet even further. Ge­nius, Coach, pure genius. Of course, teams around the league will be deathly afraid of the Jets now. Is it even possible for the Jets to become more one-dimensional than they already are? As of now, they will rely on 31-year-old Tomlinson to be the cata­lyst for an offense that will most likely only re-sign either Holmes or Edwards. The Jets running game has truly demonstrated that it is capable of coming up with big plays when the offense needs it, as the team’s staggering one rushing yard at halftime of the AFC Championship game showed. It’s okay, maybe Ryan can use his suave per­sonality to convince Mark Brunell that he could possibly mooch another Super Bowl ring if he decides to stay aboard and mentor Sanchez.

In all honesty, I do have to commend the Jets on accomplishing a successful 11-5 season. However, when you derive your entire personality from disrespecting every team you play week-in and week-out, you become a target. The debaucheries piled up over the season with sexual harassment alle­gations, DUIs and foot-fetish videos which only contributed to the general discontent with the Jets originating from the HBO se­ries Hard Knocks. As a New York football Giants fan, what really infuriates me about the Jets is the fact that in the twisted minds of Jets fans, they actually believe that they are “The” team in New York. It’s hilarious how the Giants can have one of the big­gest meltdowns in franchise history and still finish 10-6, one less win than one of the most successful seasons in Jets history. Successful sports teams either revel in the spotlight of being known as the villain or the underdog, but if a team is going to be known as a villain it had better be willing to back up anything it says. The Detroit Pistons of the late 1980s, known as ‘The Bad Boys,’ successfully lived up to their reputation by winning back-to-back NBA Championships in 1989 and 1990. The University of Miami Hurricanes football team won three national championships over the course of a decade (1983, 1987, 1989) and the 1976 Super Bowl Cham­pion Oakland Raiders cruised to their vic­tory utilizing their self-proclaimed slogan “Just win, baby” to rile up opponents.

At the end of the day, the amount of smack talk that the Jets did this year would warrant them enough ammunition to win a Super Bowl for the next ten years, and yet they couldn’t even advance to the big stage after promising to do so. Here’s a strategy, Rex, show some humility and respect and maybe opponents will show your decimat­ed team enough mercy for you to hold on to your head coaching job.

What could possibly go wrong should Ryan manage to not win his self-pro­claimed Super Bowl victory next season? The Jets go back to being the laugh­ing stock of New York and he becomes a cameraman, only this time it’s not just a hobby. I heard Belichick is hiring.