T0mShane Posted July 29, 2013 Share Posted July 29, 2013 (edited) Rex Ryan not his bold self anymore at NY Jets camp By Manish Mehta http://m.nydailynews.com/1.1411293 CORTLAND — There was a part of me that wanted the Rex Ryan of yesteryear to emerge on Sunday, guns blazing, oozing confidence, telling everyone that he would make the final decision on whether Mark Sanchez or Geno Smith will be the Jets’ starting quarterback in Week 1. GM John Idzik had undercut his head coach the day before, oddly declaring that he’d have “a pretty big role” in determining who would be the quarterback without conceding the decision ultimately resides with Ryan. The head coach that changed the culture of this franchise for the better in 2009 should have set the record straight and reclaimed his authority. He should have made it clear that he’d solicit opinions, but that the ultimate decision belonged to him. But he didn’t. Ryan says that he’s going to be true to himself heading into the watershed season of his head coaching career, but he sounded nothing like the guy whose self-assurance made him one of the most charismatic figures in the NFL in the past few years. Ryan churned out one company line after the next during a 20-minute press conference. He set his own personal spin cycle in overdrive and danced around questions about the quarterback decision. “I think you guys are making a mountain out of a molehill,” Ryan said. It was sad to see one of the most strong-willed head coaches of the past decade in that light. Ryan was in full-fledged self-preservation mode, reciting stories about how he shared a similar background with Idzik. “Our thought process is so similar,” Ryan said. “We both see players the same way. It’s so smooth… You guys are trying to make this a situation that doesn’t exist. I know I have complete support from John, from Woody (Johnson), from everybody in this organization.” To hear Ryan tell it, he’ll be little more than a courier in a few weeks to relay the decision to Sanchez and Smith. His attempt to minimize Idzik’s refusal to say that the head coach will make the final call on which quarterback will start was troubling on myriad levels. Maybe it’s the smart play, but it was a transparent tactic. Johnson hasn’t publicly said that Ryan will be a part of the rebuilding process, which has put his coach on the hot seat. (Ryan should get a one-year contract extension now.) “Don’t think for a second I don’t feel 100% support (from) everybody in this organization,” Ryan said. “Because I do. Every decision is a Jet decision.” Ryan is paid to make coaching decisions, which includes who will and won’t play for him. He made that crystal clear last year when he said that benching Mark Sanchez was “solely my decision.” However, he changed his tune Sunday: “At no time was that ever just my decision,” Ryan said. It was maddening to listen to. Logic dictates that Ryan should lean heavily on offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg and quarterbacks coach David Lee to help make the decision, but the head coach even danced around that premise. It’s laughable to think that the opinions of the two coaches who work closely with Sanchez and Smith every day won’t matter more than others in the organization. Mornhinweg smartly admitted that “you go on some gut instincts” if the competition is neck and neck in the preseason. The early returns suggest that will be the case. Smith, who worked with the first team on Sunday as part of a planned rotation in the first padded practice of camp, made a nice deep pass for a 50-yard completion to Stephen Hill. Sanchez made a sharp pass to rookie Ryan Spadola on a deep out route in team drills. Neither Sanchez nor Smith knew who’d make the final decision on the winner. The answer should be obvious. Author: Manish Mehta Edited July 29, 2013 by T0mShane Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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