New York Jets 2014: Rex Ryan, John Idzik, and an Ode to a Lost Season


Dec 1, 2014; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets head coach Rex Ryan coaches against the Miami Dolphins during the fourth quarter of a game at MetLife Stadium. The Dolphins defeated the Jets 16-13. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

I only watched the 2nd half and overtime of this week’s Jets game due to a nasty double ear infection that forced me into an early afternoon nap so I figured I’ll write about a little something different this time around. After I watched the game, and its final play, I didn’t feel angry or sad or even happy (about draft position) I just felt nothing. I felt apathy.

As the team spirals towards another overhaul in the offseason I find myself happy that it is almost over. I find myself no longer looking forward to the games but instead dreading them because I don’t feel like writing the same old things over and over again week after week. I’m not angry or bitter anymore I’m just detached.

Maybe it is my way of dealing with the strong feelings I have about the Rex Ryan era being over. His time here started when my son was born and I always associate Rex with the happiness I felt then. Things were on the way up for the team and change needed to be made after the collapse of ’08. The surprise run of ’09 was as fun as I can remember having as a football fan because there were no expectations. It was a rookie coach and a rookie quarterback just figuring things out. 2010 was more painful because of expectations, overreactions from fans and media during the season, and the fact that they should have beaten Pittsburgh. I’m still not over that loss. Beating New England at Foxboro in the playoffs will always be the pinnacle of the Rex Ryan era and the best win I’ve ever witnessed as a Jets fan. It went downhill from there.

Sep 7, 2014; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets general manager John Idzik reacts during the game against the Oakland Raiders at MetLife Stadium. The Jets defeated the Raiders 19-14. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Next year there will be a new coach and, if you believe ESPN reports this weekend, a new general manager. It is a monumental error to fire John Idzik after only two years. Idzik was never given the opportunity to hire his own coach or for his draft picks to have time to develop. With his 1st offseason spent cleaning up the cap he’s only had one real offseason to work. Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither was Tampa Bay, Arizona or Seattle (all of which went to a Super Bowl based on moves made while John Idzik was employed there). What quality candidate is going to want to come here when your predecessor was not given what he was promised and all it took to fire him was one bad season and a group of fans buying billboards?

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So three more weeks and off into the great unknown for the Jets. I’m usually excited for change because change makes things better most times. I don’t feel like it this time. I don’t feel like the Jets are going to turn it around under someone new because I don’t think this time that someone knew will necessarily be someone better. There are good head coaching and general manager candidates out there but will they be better than Rex Ryan and John Idzik? I’m not so sure.

I’m sure the replacements will win me over with gushing press conferences and there will be rosy coverage of the moves made by a media that tries to curry favor first before stabbing you in the same back that they patted you on. Maybe ’15 will be a magical, surprise season like ’09 with an even happier ending but it is hard to see that light at the end of the tunnel right now. All there is left is three more weeks of games I could not care less about. Then off into the great unknown.