EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ–The late, great Washington Redskins coach George Allen once said, “Every time you win, you’re reborn; when you lose, you die a little.”
If this is true, Rex Ryan certainly shortened his life last night.
After the most recent Jets’ loss, a 16-13 defeat at the hands of the Miami Dolphins, he was an emotional wreck.
“I can’t believe we are 2-10,” said a clearly distraught Ryan. “We can’t buy a win. It’s a joke.”
It’s a bad joke. A joke that will likely cost him his job at the end of the year.
“You never see Rex Ryan like that,” ESPN’s Steve Levy observed after Ryan’s postgame comments. “The bluster and the bravado was all gone. The losses, the ten losses really [have] taken a ton out of him–you almost detect the man was crying before he hit the podium.”
Trent Dilfer offered, “This league breaks a lot of people.”
“Everybody in [the locker room] is hurting,” Ryan said at the postgame presser. “Hurting for each other, for our fans. We’d do anything. It wasn’t meant to be, I guess.”
And he’s taking all the blame.
“I’m responsible for everything that happened,” Ryan said.
Team owner Woody Johnson, strolling MetLife Stadium with Mitt Romney last night, might need to consult with the former Massachusetts governor on executive decisions. Fans demand a new coach, a new quarterback, and a new general manager. One billboard near MetLife Stadium demands a new owner if Johnson fails to make a fresh start in the front office. Clearly, it’s decision time for Woody Johnson.
Most fans seem to want the Jets to clean house. And they certainly made a statement with their wallets last night. MetLife Stadium was loaded with Dolphins fans, with so many Jets fans choosing to sell their tickets on the internet to Miami faithful. Whenever the Dolphins had a positive play, the stadium erupted.
The least in the AFC East plays not without bright spots. The Jets ran for 277 yards against a very good Miami defense. That is an impressive accomplishment. But they couldn’t do anything through the air.
Their second-year quarterback, Geno Smith, still a major work-in-progress, threw for 65 yards, going 7-13 on his pass attempts. Keep in mind that before the Jets’ last drive, down 16-13 in the final two minutes, they had attempted just eight passes all night.
That is very unusual in a league that has become pass happy with rules making it very tough to cover wide receivers without getting penalized.
And when you run as well as the Jets did Monday night, it should set up great scenarios for your passing offense, thanks to the ability to sell play-action fakes.
On top of that, the Dolphins played without their second and third cornerbacks, Cortland Finnegan and Jamar Taylor. They fielded a defense so thin at the position that circumstances forced them to play safeties at corner.
With that kind of running game, and the opposition depleted at corner, a good quarterback would have had a field day through the air. Smith is not a good quarterback right now. In fact, Ryan has never had a top-shelf quarterback over his six years with the Jets.
And if you don’t have a true answer at quarterback in the NFL, considered a pass-driven league, you are eventually going to get fired. This is likely going to happen to Ryan after the season.
And he’s such a beaten man, perhaps the Woody Johnson should just put him out of misery right now.
“I feel sick,” Ryan said. “We can’t buy a win.”
Photo credit: Alan Schaefer