Jets coach Rex Ryan is putting himself on the hot seat.
After Saturday’s loss to the Giants (a loss that disproved Ryan’s boasts about the Jets being the better team in town), much of the criticism from Jets fans and the media is going toward quarterback Mark Sanchez and offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer, whose play calling had Sanchez throwing 59 passes. But Ryan said at his press conference today that the heat should be on him.
Asked if Schottenheimer’s job is on the line in Sunday’s season finale, Ryan said, “No.” He then elaborated.
“You know what? You look at things right now — and I know Brian takes a ton of the heat, he’s taking heat, Sanchez is taking heat, whatever, I’m taking heat, that’s fine,” Ryan said. “It should be on me. It shouldn’t be on other coaches, players, whatever. I’m the guy that said that we were the better team and we weren’t that day. So that should fall on me. The criticism should be on me. And trust me, I know a bunch of it is and rightfully so.”
It’s hard to defend Schottenheimer’s play calling, but Ryan defended Schottenheimer’s work ethic.
“He works about as hard as anybody I’ve ever been around,” Ryan said.
Ultimately, Ryan said, he thinks there’s plenty of blame to go around in his locker room, but that the bulk of it goes to him.
“I don’t think you blame things on one guy,” Ryan said. “And if you are going to blame it on one guy, it should be the head coach. That’s what you get paid to do, and I’m certainly not ducking my responsibility. That was my responsibility to win that game, it didn’t get done, and so the criticism should be placed on me. And you know what? I got broad enough shoulders. I can take it.”
Ryan should be ready to take it for several months of a longer-than-expected Jets offseason.