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Thursday, January 24, 2008

Rex Deserves Better

The last few days, I've tried to read everything I can about John Harbaugh, and most of it is glowing reviews about how he "grew up in the game" and "knows how to motivate his players" and this and that. I'm not sure whether I've just been saturated with the Baltimore media falling in love with his "energy," but I've started feeling more positive about the new Ravens jefe who's never actually been a head coach before. Besides, the hiring of offensive guru Cam Cameron has settled me down (although it will be interesting to see Cameron work for someone who used to be his assistant at Indiana).

On a related note, it appears the Ravens will be retaining defensive coordinator Rex Ryan, who I endorsed for the head coaching position more than once on this site, but to little avail. He wasn't actually "fired" per se, only released, it would appear. This means he is free to look for head coaching positions (which have closed up), but that the Ravens can block him from making a lateral move (becoming D-coordinator somewhere else). Since Bisciotti wants Ryan back, I guess his options are limited.

In terms of opportunity, rejoining the Ravens is good for Ryan, where he has his system installed, players who love him and a GM willing to draft plenty of talent. But in terms of self-respect...

Look, I love what Ryan has done since he's been here (defenses at least in the top 6 every year) and I'm glad he's coming home. But as a guy who respects what he wants to do with his career, I wish he could go somewhere else. What does it say if a guy who has a reputation as being ready for a head coaching job is passed over by his own franchise and expected to return and help them win? Furthermore, what does it say if Ryan is asked to work for a head coach who would've been working for him last year? Not only was he passed over, he was lapped.

I think that coming back is not only a bad move for Ryan, but it could be bad for the team. If we already have problems in the lockerroom, what do you think will happen when the players see the guy they endorsed for coach working under some outsider who's only ever been a special teams coordinator? What will happen if Harbaugh and Ryan disagree - won't tensions be further spurned over the job that Ryan lost? When you decide to take an outsider in the clubhouse, you have to make sure he's the definite leader - especially with a guy as young and inexperienced as Harbaugh. Ryan now poses a threat to that balance.

I wish we could keep him and everything would be hunky dory, but that's not the truth of the matter. No matter what Ryan says, that bitterness will persist, and next year he'll jet out of here faster than you can say, "Crap on a stick."

Some things are just inevitable, and it's inevitable that Ryan will be leaving Baltimore soon, whether we like it or not.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Just released video for the Men's BBall team.