As promised, Rex gets more involved

May, 14, 2012
5/14/12
8:20
PM ET
At the end of the season, Rex Ryan said he would take a more active role in day-to-day coaching, specifically with the defense. It's still early, but he apparently is doing just that, perhaps to regain the pulse of the team, which he admittedly lost last season.

"He did fade off a little bit, I don’t know what reason for," Darrelle Revis told the New York Post and the Star-Ledger of Newark Monday at David Harris' charity golf tournament in New Jersey. "But he's the head coach, he has a lot on his plate, a lot of pressure. It's just something that maybe he thought he put more trust in the coaching staff, and seeing that it kind of hurt us last year, maybe, a little bit.

"Not to frown on any coaches or anything, how they coached, but it’s good to see your head coach being involved, at least just putting his two cents in," Revis added. "You just hear his voice every now and then in the meeting room, so I think it is good."

Ryan made defensive coordinator Mike Pettine the primary play caller last season. For Ryan, it seemed to be a natural evolution. After two seasons of being heavily involved, he delegated to his right-hand man. In retrospect, Ryan realizes he got away from what he does best, rolling up his sleeves and coaching.

It's unclear how the playcalling responsibilities will be handled in 2012. Pettine, speaking at a recent charity event, described it as a collaborative effort in either case. He sounded in favor of Ryan returning to his previous role.

"I told him, 'Rex, look at yourself in the mirror, you're a football coach,'" said Pettine, acknowledging that Ryan "strayed a little bit" from the old Rex.

Revis believes Ryan wants to spend more time in the meeting rooms, closer to the players, to prevent a repeat of last season -- the locker-room discord that ruined the team in December. That sounds good, but the problems last season were on offense, not defense.

"He got wind of it at the tail end of the season," Revis said of the dissension. "We tried to address it earlier through the players, and it didn’t work. ... He was blind from it, because he thought it was over, and at the tail end all this other stuff started coming out. I think that’s why he's coming around more, to be more involved in what's going on, and what's everybody doing, and just talking to guys and making sure we’re sound as a team."

Rich Cimini

ESPN New York Jets reporter

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