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Friday, December 28, 2012
Is Rex Ryan making a power play?

By James Walker

Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News reports Jets head coach Rex Ryan wants out if owner Woody Johnson doesn't do everything possible to improve the team. That specifically includes fixing the offense and quarterback situation, which has made it difficult for the defensive-minded Ryan to win in New York on a consistent basis.

If the report is correct, this would be the ultimate power play from Ryan. "Black Monday" is just three days away. Numerous head coaching jobs are about to become available around the NFL, so the timing of this news makes sense. This could be a message from Ryan's camp that the Jets better shape up and fix this mess, or Ryan can take his talents elsewhere. Despite Ryan's brash persona, he is a well-respected Xs and Os coach who would immediately become a top candidate if he is let go by the Jets (6-9).

Ryan knows better than anyone that New York's quarterback issues and salary-cap woes could make it tough to succeed next year. He's about to complete his second consecutive non-winning season in New York and will enter 2013 on the hot seat. There could be better situations out there for Ryan -- even among teams about to fire head coaches.

Ryan could very well be unhappy with the way things turned out this year. But he's not unhappy enough to walk away from the two years left on his contract. The Jets also are not expected to fire Ryan.

But it does seem pretty clear that Jets general manager Mike Tannenbaum will be let go or reassigned. Ryan can only hope Tannenbaum's replacement can fix New York's immensely flawed roster.