By Adam Hart
He's refused to genuflect and kiss the rings of The Hooded One. He's been flossin' his team since the red lights started glowing on HBO's cameras. He's had lap band surgery.
He is Rex Ryan, the Jets coach known for his brashness and oddly-white teeth. And if most New England media members had it their way, hed be leading their 9-2 team. Oh, it would be so much fun when he handfeeds them the quotes they want.
In another world it might've happened, had Bill Belichick not left the Jets for Foxborough. This is exactly how that other world would operate:
OPERATOR: It is 9:13 a.m. You are on a conference call with New England Patriots head coach Rex Ryan. Press 5 on your phone if you have a question to ask First up, we have
REPORTER 1: Rex, you have a long week to prepare for hosting the 9-2 Jets. Coach Belichick is giving his players considerable time off. Can yours expect the same?
REX: Yeah, a mini Bye Week sounds good right about now. Giving them three days off.
REPORTER 1: Any sort of message delivered before setting them loose?
REX: I told em, Lets go eat a gosh darn five-course meal. Football and five-course meals: its the Patriot way.
REPORTER 2: But when you do get to work, will you be concerned about any illegal filming by the Jets after the news out of Denver?
REX: Look, if I was concerned about the Jets getting a hold of our practice footage, Hard Knocks sure as expletive wouldnt have been up my expletive all summer, would they? I know were the best team in football -- you may not know it, but I do. Of course they should want to watch and learn from the best. I'll deliver our practice footage on a silver platter if they want.
REPORTER 3: (gushing) Wow.
REX: Is that a question or are you five?
REPORTER 4: Coach, in all seriousness, do you see this is an epic battle?
REX: Well, expletive yeah I do. The Jets get all the respect in the world from you people. Oh, theyre so quiet and reserved. So what? Were loud, boisterous and not afraid of anybody. They can come in here all fat and cocky, but theyll be leaving limp and... hold on a sec. (yelling) Hey, Mike! Mike! You get me that footlong sub or what? (muffled yes in background) Extra hots? (muffled yes in background) Damn right you did. Gimme that thing. Mmm... get in my belly. (rustling paper, CHOMP, GULP, relieved sigh) All gone.
REPORTER 2: Did you even take the wrapper off that sub?
REX: Whats it to ya?
(10 seconds of awkward silence)
REPORTER 1: Coach, the Jets are known to play Bon Jovi to simulate the level of noise opposing crowds make. I know youre the home team, but what do you use?
REX: I put Vampire Weekend on blast. Those herky-jerky, smarmy vocals are torturous. Are there even lyrics to their songs, or is it just jibberish?
REPORTER 5: New York has a pretty good secondary, but your rookie is locking down every receiver he faces. Its like sticking the opponent on a desert island. Since youre the master of hype, ever think of giving him the nickname McCourty Island?
REX: Heres the problem with that idea -- too many syllables in McCourty. McCourty Island sounds stupid. And I cant be taking deep breaths to say a nickname. It defeats the purpose. But McCourtyville, thats promotable. Oh look, Braylon Edwards checks into the quiet hamlet of McCourtyville, too bad he never checks out. Boom, done.
REPORTER 3: Wowee!
REX: Reporter 3, I've got a Tonka truck in my office for you to play with. Run along.
REPORTER 1: What d'ya see in Antonio Cromartie? He's been a pleasant surprise for the Jets.
REX: Hes tough. Guy is an att-lete. Plus, he's so productive. Cromartie repeatedly produces and produces and produces and produces, and... for the sake of saving time let's just say he reproduces. A lot.
REPORTER 4: What do you consider the bigger rivalry: New York or Cleveland?
REX: Hey, you know my brother's real name is Remus? He's got long hair like an old lady librarian, too. What a expletive.
REPORTER 3: Are you going to dress up like Belichick, kind of like how you wore that wig to look like your brother?
REX: They don't make hoodies in 5XL. Alls I got are sweater vests and altered Patriots tablecloths. Next.
REPORTER 4: How about the rivalry? You never answered my question.
REX: Obviously New York is the bigger rivalry, mainly because theyre afraid of us.
REPORTER 4: Afraid? How do you know that?
REX: My dad told me a long time ago that if someone wont even engage in a war of words with you, theyre too busy focusing on stopping the shaking going on in their boots. And believe me, the Jets have a case of happy feet right now.
Alright. That'll do it for today, guys. Gotta go figure out what's for pre-lunch.
REPORTER 1: Pre-lunch?
REX: Yeah. It helps take the pressure off. You know, the pressure of trying to bring New England it's first Super Bowl.
See: Ryan is a better quote than Belichick, making the media's job easy. But easy isn't always the adjective one wants attached to his job. Or girlfriend. It promises a lack of spectacular results and a whole heap of disloyalty, respectively.