Monday, December 29, 2014, saw the departure of Rex Ryan as the head coach of the NFL’s New York Jets, after six seasons.
As a Jets fan for many years, Rex Ryan was a personal favorite of mine. His candor, swagger, and never-say-die spirit changed the culture of what was then a moribund franchise.
His first two seasons (2009 and 2010) saw trips to the AFC Championship Game (just one win shy of playing in the Super Bowl), led by quarterback Mark Sanchez and shut-down corner Darrelle Revis.
Unfortunately, Rex Ryan’s next four seasons found the Jets missing the post season altogether. Sanchez cooled-down from his earlier highs, and Revis departed. For the last two seasons, Ryan was hampered by a new General Manager that some (including me) believe deliberately sabotaged his chances for success.
Despite that, Ryan managed an 8-8 record for 2013, but could do no better than 4-12 in 2014. For what it’s worth, the General Manager was given the (deserved) ax on the same day as Ryan.
Rex Ryan will be missed in New York football. No doubt, he will resurface somewhere else (or, perhaps, even as a broadcaster) and I’ll be there rooting for him once again.