Mike Pettine has been Rex Ryan’s right hand man since their arrival in 2009. Ryan leans on Pettine for all things defensive related. As the years have gone by, Rex Ryan’s involvement in the defense has varied a lot, for being heavily involved to leaving it more to coach Pettine. A lot of talk surrounds the topic of who calls the plays. Is it Pettine? Is it Ryan? Is it both? To Pettine, this is a topic that gets too much attention:
I think that is a little overblown. It is basically what it has been and again, it will all depend on the opponent. Sometimes it is in game, sometimes I take first and second down, he will take third down or vice versa or, ‘hey, it is a two minute, you take it.’ We are ego free when it comes to that. To me, a lot of times and I explained this before, the calls are already predetermined in a lot of situations. The ball is on this hash mark, in this area of the field with this personnel grouping, this down and distance, we have already met and agreed on what it would be so it is basically a matter of who is reading it off the sheet. The game plan, especially if a team is sticking to tendency, is almost on autopilot at times. Third downs we will sometimes script out how we are going to call them but again there are a lot of different combinations on how we do it. Again it is something we didn’t feel was broken so there was really no need to fix it.