PALM BEACH, Fla. -- Rex Ryan was scheduled to leave the NFL meetings Tuesday to attend the South Carolina pro day. The Jets' coach has attended at least three pro days as the team prepares for next month's draft.
Ryan apparently is on a mission to find a pass rusher. At South Carolina, the star attraction is DE/OLB Melvin Ingram, regarded as a likely top-10 pick. He also visited Clemson (DE/OLB Andre Branch), LSU (DT Michael Brockers) and North Carolina (Quentin Coples).
Surprisingly, Ryan didn't attend the Alabama pro day. The Crimson Tide are loaded with defensive talent, but as Ryan said, "What am I going to see in Alabama? Everybody knows we like Courtney Upshaw."
Alabama also has a pretty fair running back, Trent Richardson. Ryan doesn't think Richardson will last until the Jets' pick (16th overall).
"Let's hope so," Ryan said.
Other notes from the NFL meetings:
• Ryan didn't rule out the possibility of re-signing WR Braylon Edwards, a free agent, but don't hold your breath. "I think he had a knee issue that needs to be checked out," said Ryan, suggesting they might be able to find a receiver in the draft.
• Ryan was non-committal on whether he'd welcome another summer of HBO's "Hard Knocks."
• Are you ready for your Wayne Hunter fix? Ryan said Hunter is "our starter right now," but he didn't give an iron-clad endorsement. "Wayne, like our whole football team, was inconsistent at times. At times, Wayne was brilliant. But there were other times where he wasn’t at his best. I think Wayne needs to improve and I think he’s ready to do that."