Rex Ryan is out of an NFL job and trying his hand in television, but he’s still not ready to end his love affair with the AFC East.
Ryan, who was fired by the Buffalo Bills before the 2016 season ended, isn’t ruling out a return to coaching. That shouldn’t be a surprise, and neither should his desired destination: the New York Jets.
“I’m definitely never going to say never on that one,” Ryan recently told Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News when asked about coaching the Jets again. “I love New York. I do. I love the people. I got a ton of friends — lifelong friends — in that organization.
“I’ll never say never. I don’t know in what capacity, but I’ll leave that open for sure.”
The Jets, of course, gave Ryan his first head coach gig in 2009. He found his highest success in New York, leading the club to back-to-back AFC Championship Game appearances in his first two seasons. Jets owner Woody Johnson fired Ryan after the team went 4-12 in 2014, but apparently the two still are on good terms.
“They had to fire me,” Ryan said. “I won four games. It’s as simple as that. … So, I get it. I walked out of there with my head up and I understood. But that wasn’t easy for Woody. That wasn’t easy for anybody. When you go 4-12, you’re going to get fired. And I knew that.”
The Jets, of course, already have a head coach, but Todd Bowles is on thin ice after New York’s 5-11 campaign. And while Ryan told Mehta he wants to try his hand in TV for “at least a year,” you’d better believe he’d jump at the chance to face his archnemeses the New England Patriots again.
Thumbnail photo via Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports Images