Since his ousting from the Buffalo Bills, former head coach and defensive mastermind Rex Ryan has kept his focus on his new gig as an analyst with ESPN.
Ryan’s name wasn’t linked to any head coaching or coordinator openings during the offseason and it’s unclear if Ryan will get another crack at a head coaching gig in the NFL anytime soon.
Despite his departure from Buffalo, which was somewhat celebrated by the media and Bills’ fans, Ryan offered a surprising and positive perspective on his former team as they enter training camp.
In response to a USA Today article that had the Bills finishing the 2017 campaign with a dreadful 4-12 record, Ryan had this to say:
“There’s no way in hell,” Ryan said, per The Buffalo News (h/t NFL.com).
“That’s a coach’s dream, to have that kind of prediction because there is no pressure on you, but I think that is total bull. If that is the case, why was I fired when I was fired if that’s how bad this team was? So, I don’t get that. To saddle them with four wins, I totally disagree with that.”
In fact Ryan feels that the Bills will be a surprise team this season.
“I feel the Bills will surprise a ton of people,” Ryan commented.
“They are kind of trying to float this under the radar stuff, which I get. That’s probably the way to go, that’s the way everybody goes. Undersell and overproduce. I get it. I believe they will have a lot better year than the experts. Could they be a playoff team? They might very well be.”
Despite his departure, Ryan had glowing things to say about the Bills and their fans.
“The fans were always there for me, that team, that city. And that’s the beauty of Buffalo and the resolve of their people,” Ryan said about his tenure in Buffalo.
“It ain’t easy all those years not going [to the playoffs]. But you know what, we are going to roll up our sleeves and go at it again. And that’s the way that community is. And I think that’s what they appreciated about me because they know I tried. They know damn well, I tried.”
Perhaps Ryan does see something in this Bills team that others don’t at this point and perhaps he is saying all the right things about his former team in hope of landing another gig in the NFL in the future.
Regardless, Ryan’s takes on the Bills and the other team’s in the AFC East will be interesting to watch as the upcoming NFL season unfolds.