By Frank Wolf
Counting down the final minutes in Buffalo’s 27-20 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers Sunday Rex Ryan’s future had to be on the minds of just about every Bills fan. With less than 2 seasons into the Ryan era nobody within an ear’s shot could convince me that Rex Ryan was ever capable of leading the Bills out of their 17 year and counting playoff drought.
The Pegula’s went all-in on Rex Ryan two springs ago after then HC Doug Marrone opted out of an extension. Ryan was fresh on the unemployment line after the NY Jets cut ties. The Ryan lure was certainly intriguing, here’s a guy that speaks his mind, has a knack for building great defenses and likes to lead the fight into places like Foxboro.
Ryan’s biggest problem, himself. Rex is unable to adjust with the times. He’s never been good at delegating and clock management has never been one of his assets. Rex’s greatest attribute is his mouth. He’s always been a fiery coach, an exceptional motivator and witty. But this is the NFL. Guys aren’t dumb, players are paid a ton of money and they are pretty smart. They work hard during the week in the weight room and in the film room. Ryan’s teams look nowhere near as ready as the opposing teams do. They lack preparation and discipline.
The one thing Ryan was known for was his great defensive schemes. In the end, that’s what will cost him his job. When Rex arrived, the Bills already had one of the leagues better defensive corps. Under then defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz, Buffalo had a top-three defense. To say the Buffalo defense has regressed under Rex Ryan would be an injustice. They’ve completely pulled a 180.
What Rex should have done when given the head coaching job was give Schwartz a hefty raise and all of the room he wanted to continue his work. Ryan couldn’t make Jim feel any more unwelcome. Telling media and fans that the defense “wasn’t good enough”. Idiocy. Pure idiocy.
The Bills defense ranks 21st in average yardage allowed per game. That has brother Rob’s fingerprints all over it. The Pegula’s allow Rex to hire his twin brother to a multi-year deal so they’ll pay him up the wazoo for the next couple years for doing another bum job.
Pegula needs to get out of the way. What happened to hiring an expert to run the show from the top down? Russ Brandon was a ticket taker for the Rochester Redbirds Minor League Baseball team less than 10 years ago. This is the guy in charge of the Bills and the Sabres?
My goodness no wonder this is a sports town with a drinking problem!