New York Jets Should Allow Rex Ryan to Finish the Season


Nov 2, 2014; Kansas City, MO, USA; New York Jets head coach Rex Ryan watches play on the sidelines during the first half against the Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

The season has quickly gone down the bowl for the New York Jets. After topping the Raiders in week one, and scoring on their first three drives against the Packers, the season has gotten worse and worse, and here we are at 1-8. The season is in a downward spiral, without a lot of hope that it is going to turn around.

So, up comes the topic of head coach Rex Ryan. It’s quite obvious that his days are numbered with the Jets. There are arguments on either side as to how much of the situation is his fault, but the bottom line is, when the team bottoms out, the head coach is the first casualty. You can’t fire all of the players. The coach is the change that is made, and odds are pretty solid that this is the fate that will be coming to Rex Ryan.

But, when should the Jets do it? The Jets have their bye week coming up following the game against the Steelers. Fans are starting to talk that if the Jets play badly on Sunday, coach Ryan should be fired during the break. I disagree, and I will tell you why.

Dec 29, 2013; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; New York Jets head coach Rex Ryan looks on from the sideline during the first half against the Miami Dolphins at Sun Life Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

THE PLAYERS LOVE PLAYING FOR HIM: Don’t click out of this article yet. We have all said this about coach Ryan for a long time. The players love him, the players love him. Despite that, the results have been bad. You might say, “The players love him. So what?” I am not saying he should be the coach long-term because the players love him.

What I am saying, however, is that getting rid of Ryan now, will actually make it worse. The players love him, so getting rid of Ryan now, will not inspire them to a turnaround. It will cause them to implode. They will know it is over, and the team will quit. Ryan is the only one that can keep the team playing together for the remainder of the year.

Aug 22, 2014; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg on the bench against the New York Giants during the second half at MetLife Stadium. The Giants defeated the Jets 35-24. Mandatory Credit: Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports

NO COMPETENT INTERIM COACH: If coach Ryan is fired mid-year, you obviously don’t have a permanent replacement ready to go. The Jets would need to appoint someone on the staff to be the interim coach. Who would the Jets choose?

Marty Mornhinweg has coaching experience. But that experience has been bad, as he was the Lions head coach for two seasons, and posted a combined record of 5-27. It isn’t exactly a record that makes Mornhinweg an appealing choice to coach the team. Then, what? Dennis Thurman? Karl Dunbar? Maybe, but does that really make a difference? If you are going to put in a coach with either poor results, or no experience, is silly. Just leave coach Ryan in place.

Aug 28, 2014; Oakland, CA, USA; Seattle Seahawks offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell against the Oakland Raiders at Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

IT WILL NOT HELP COACHING SEARCH: I have read the argument that firing Rex Ryan early will give the Jets a leg up on the coaching search. It would give them the chance to talk to candidates such as Darrell Bevell before other teams have the chance. Will it give them the extra time? Sure. But it will not do anything else.

There is an unfortunate fact we all need to realize. The Jets are a mess.

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This is not exactly a prized position in the league at this moment. Whenever the Jets start their coaching search, they are not going to have candidates coming to them. With a general manager that carries a perception of being clueless with regards to personnel, coaches are not going to be running. When the Jets search, they will have their candidates, and will be able to hire one, or not. Two months early is not going to change the appeal, or lack thereof, of their head coach position.

Nov 2, 2014; Kansas City, MO, USA; New York Jets head coach Rex Ryan watches play on the sidelines during the first half against the Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

IT WILL MAKE NO DIFFERENCE TO REX RYAN: I have also read the argument that allowing Rex the benefit of being let go early will help him find a new job. I totally disagree here.

The league regards coach Ryan as a strong defensive mind, one of the strongest. Whether Ryan is fired during the season, or on Black Monday, he will not be out of a job long. The idea of giving him the “respect” of extra time to find a new job is silly. Rex Ryan will work in the league, if not as a head coach as a defensive coordinator, in 2015. Guaranteed.

Leave Rex Ryan in his post until the season ends. Letting him go early changes nothing, for either side.