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First, the Harbaughs. Next, the Ryans?

11/24/2011

On Thanksgiving night, the Harbaugh brothers -- John and Jim -- will make history. Jim's 49ers visit John's Ravens, the first game that brothers faced each other as head coaches. Thanksgiving is a family holiday, so it seems only fitting that it happen on this day.

Which raises the question: What about a Turkey-Day showdown between the Ryans, Rex and Rob? Hey, it's possible. Rob is the Cowboys' defensive coordinator, a well-respected coach with an extensive resume. If he's successful with the Cowboys, who knows? Rob is a bit, um, unconventional, but maybe an owner will take a chance on Rob, just like Woody Johnson did in 2009 with Rex.

That would be some showdown, a Ryan Bowl on Thanksgiving. The only downer would be the short week, minimizing the amount of pre-game trash talking that would go on between them.

"Oh, I'd whoop him, it's not like that's a problem," Rex said, smiling.

Ryan said he'd love it if he and Rob became the second brother tandem to square off.

"I don't know who else is out there, families or whatever, but I'm excited to see the Harbaughs battle it," Ryan said. "That'll be great because you know there were sibling rivalries and all that kind of stuff. Both of them are fiery guys. They're going to have theirs teams (ready).

"The Harbaugh‑ism is popping out of their skin, and they're going to be popping out of their skin to play each other. It should be a great game. I hope San Francisco wins. Sorry, John. But no, it'll be great, and I'm sure that they're honored to go against each other as the first combination.

"I hope I get the opportunity to coach against my brother," Ryan continued. "I think that would be fantastic, and I know that's something that he deserves, to become a head coach in this league, and it'll be a lot of fun."