Rex Ryan on Competing with Bill Belichick


December 6, 2010; Foxboro, MA, USA; New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick (left) shakes hands with New York Jets head coach Rex Ryan (right) after the game at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: William Perlman/THE STAR-LEDGER via US PRESSWIRE

The New York Jets vs the New England Patriots, the rivalry resumes. It always is a big game isn’t it? These two teams never play in an insignificant situation, and this week is no different, with first place in the AFC East on the line.

This is also the week Rex puts on himself, historically saying that this matchup comes down the coaching, he against Bill. He likes to take the pressure off of his team by putting it on himself. He was asked during yesterday’s press conference if he competes with anyone as hard as he does coach Belichick. Here is what he had to say:

Yeah, my brother. When you look at that, (to his brother, Rob) it’s always, ‘Hey guess what, looks like we’re ahead of you again.’ Actually, I can’t say that this year, can I? (laughing) I think they’re second in the league in defense, so I’m proud of him. We have some work to do and we still plan on catching them. When I look at him (Coach Belichick), I see him as the best coach in the league. I’ve said that from the day I took the job, but again, he’s going to get my best. If it was just between Belichick and me, he’s going to win that battle. I recognize that. It’s not going to be by a lack of effort on my part. He’s going to get everything I’ve got. Like I said before many times, maybe he struggles one day, then something happens and he’s sick or I don’t know, maybe I’ll get him. I don’t know. I look at it as you want to compete against the very best. Maybe I’m crazy or whatever, which it’s not even debatable, but I have dreams about what I want to achieve. I want to compete against the very best. I’m not worried about competing with somebody down here, I want to compete against the guy that’s up here. That’s eventually where I want to get one day. If I’m fortunate enough to get there, that’d be great. Maybe people (will) want to compete against me the same way. That’d be terrific.

Although during training camp, Rex called himself the best defensive coach in football. However, recently, Rex said that if it came down to him and Belichick in this game, the Patriots would win. Why?

I don’t think I’m the best head coach in the league right now. I think he is. So, I was truthful. And I know right now, we’re 18th in the league (in total defense), so (that’s) not very good. But again, that’s not where I think we’ll finish. I’m confident in my abilities and all that stuff, but if you’re looking, let’s face it, we know he has all the rings and everything else and the records. I just think when it’s all said and done, when you look at what he’s accomplished in his coaching career as a head coach, there probably won’t be anybody close to him. I just think that obviously I’m not there and neither is anybody else in this league. So, I just put him (there), respectfully put him there. But if it was just coaching defense, than I’d put myself with anybody.

Rex does a great job at drawing attention to himself this week, as a way of taking the pressure off of the team in the game. Hopefully it will translate into a good performance on the field.