- Matt Ehalt, ESPN New York contributor
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Four years ago today, the Jets hired Rex Ryan.
It has been a wild ride ever since. It's been filled with, among other things, two AFC title games, a butt fumble and, of course, Tebow Time.
Here are some of the more memorable quotes from Ryan's opening news conference on Jan. 21, 2009, and how they relate to the current state of the Jets:
"I'm going to surround myself with the best people I can find. The kind of coaches that I bring in here are going to work with me. They don't work for me, they work with me. ... Mike Westhoff coaching special teams and Bill Callahan are already committed. ... I just hired Mike Pettine, who was with me in Baltimore for the last several years, as our defensive coordinator. He's a rising star in the league. We don't want to pump him up too much. We want him to be around here for a while, as well, but you're going to see, he's a star in this league."
Four years later: All of the coaches Ryan specifically mentioned are gone, and none are head coaches in the league. Pettine and Callahan went to different teams and Westhoff retired. The staff has a much different look four years later.
"We want to have an all-weather offense. What kind of offense? We're going to have an all-weather offense, and that starts with a running game, being able to run the football, because I think it's important. You've got to win when the snow falls to get where you want to go, and that's to win Super Bowls."
Four years later: The Jets might have an all-weather offense -- it just isn't any good. The running attack worked early on but has faltered since, and the team will be on its third offensive coordinator in three years. The offense has held the team back in many ways.
"The only way I know how to handle a challenge is to hit that thing head on, and that's what we're going to do. The message to the rest of the league is, 'Hey, the Jets are coming and we're going to give you everything we've got, and that's going to be, I think, more than you can handle.' We're going to find out."
Four years later: That may have been the case the first two years, but the Jets have missed the playoffs the past two seasons and have had some truly bad performances in that span.
"I know the Jets' fans. This is going to be great. This is a great marriage right here, I can honestly say. The style of defense that we're going to play, with our fans, whoo, it's going to be rough on people. ... The expectations are high for me as a head football coach. I have high expectations of our fans. We don't let them score at home. Anywhere, really, but at home let's put it on them."
Four years later: Would Jets fans say it has been a great marriage so far? Seems like some of the fans are turning on Ryan and might want to see the team go in another direction.