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Rex Ryan defends taking time off to attend Clemson game


Jets coach Rex Ryan wasn’t at the team facility when final roster cuts were due on Saturday because he was attending the Clemson-Georgia game. Some members of the New York media have questioned whether that’s a good use of an NFL head coach’s time during an important point in the season, but Ryan said today that he stands by his decision to make the trip.

Ryan, whose son Seth is a walk-on receiver at Clemson, said that although Saturday was the deadline for the Jets finalizing the 53-man roster, they had actually done most of that work a day earlier.

“Almost all of our moves were made, Friday evening, when I was here,” Ryan said. “I talked to several of the players that we were going to release. I don’t think it was official until – we actually never made our moves until later that evening and that’s why the report came out when it did the next day. It came out Saturday. But certainly I spoke with most of our guys that were released just like I’ve done every year. I was very aware of our situation.”

Ryan said it was important to him to attend his son’s first college football game, even though Seth, as you’d expect for a freshman walk-on, is a bench warmer.

“This was an opportunity to go see my son play his first college game. I think ‘played’ is probably not very accurate. I saw him stand there,” Ryan said with a laugh. “But it was a great deal. Obviously, it’s not like I’m going to be able to go to another game. It just so happened I could make that one. It was a night game. That’s really what I did. I took advantage of it. It was great. I just played dad there for a day. That was a lot of fun.”

This isn’t the first time an NFL coach has faced questions about missing work to see his son in a college football game: In 1994, Cowboys coach Barry Switzer was criticized by his predecessor, Jimmy Johnson, after Switzer skipped a Saturday team meeting to watch his son play college football. Switzer lashed out at Johnson, saying, “My family is a priority for me, my kids are. Jimmy Johnson has told the world that his family doesn’t mean anything to him.”

You can say many things about Rex Ryan, but you can’t say his family isn’t important to him. And if that 53-man roster that was assembled on Saturday isn’t good enough, Ryan may have a whole lot more time to spend with his family next year.

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51 Responses to “Rex Ryan defends taking time off to attend Clemson game”
  1. bucsfan5000 says: Sep 2, 2013 8:25 PM

    Was he watching their offense?

  2. jonevans83 says: Sep 2, 2013 8:27 PM

    If it was already done then it was done. Stop witch hunting, I’m sure the Jets will give us plenty of actual things to complain/laugh about throughout the season. This isn’t really… anything to bat an eyeball at however.

  3. noring4youstill says: Sep 2, 2013 8:30 PM

    Jesus he went to his sons football game

  4. mclovin07 says: Sep 2, 2013 8:31 PM

    Quit complaining Jets fans!

    It was 2-for-1 hot dog day!!!

  5. warnocker says: Sep 2, 2013 8:36 PM

    stay classy New York media

  6. dwntwnbadboy19 says: Sep 2, 2013 8:38 PM

    He knew Quinn was coming to town. Super Bowl is already in the bag, might as well take some leisure time.

  7. papazoid says: Sep 2, 2013 8:39 PM

    he is entitled to time off. going to his sons football is totally understandable. if the GM needed to check in with him, i’m sure his phone was turned on.

  8. bsizemore68 says: Sep 2, 2013 8:42 PM

    It was probably a beat writer trying to be smart because that is all most of them do, however, on the other after all its the New York media. Bill

  9. johnz59 says: Sep 2, 2013 8:44 PM

    Manufacturing news to dig at Jets fans. No wonder you love Mehta so much.

  10. mrlaloosh says: Sep 2, 2013 8:44 PM

    Get off the mans back. He went to see his SON in his first college game. Trolls are stupid. Almost as dumb as the New York media.

  11. howiefeltersnatch says: Sep 2, 2013 8:45 PM

    At least it wasn’t a Lil Wayne concert

  12. tolan04 says: Sep 2, 2013 8:48 PM

    Scouting his 2014 qb

  13. thefiesty1 says: Sep 2, 2013 8:52 PM

    Scouting Clowney for the first pick?

  14. toybkshr says: Sep 2, 2013 8:59 PM

    I’m not a RR fan by any means, but the NY media has gone way overboard.

  15. fissels says: Sep 2, 2013 9:03 PM

    Much ado about nothing. Typical of the NY media

  16. mrblacksunday says: Sep 2, 2013 9:07 PM

    I honestly cannot wait for the jets season to start…. 😉

  17. ajg314 says: Sep 2, 2013 9:08 PM

    For crying out loud, would this even be worth a single line of media coverage if this were done by, say, the Chargers Head Coach, or the Cardinals Head Coach or the Raiders Head Coach, or on and on? Enough already.

  18. classyjacklambert says: Sep 2, 2013 9:14 PM

    His son might be a decent addition on special teams but the likelihood of him being a major contributor is doubtful. Although I will say that his footwork is superb, apparently that is something his father took an unnaturally strong interest in growing up for some reason, but he’s not the most athletic receiver on the team by far.

  19. FinFan68 says: Sep 2, 2013 9:20 PM

    Nothing wrong with what he did. If he did stay some people would have criticized him for not being there for his son’s first college game. He probably won’t make it to many more of them. The “work” was done already. The only criticism I might have about this is that he talked to “most” and not ALL the guys getting cut. I don’t know if all HCs talk to every one of the young kids that get cut, but they should.

  20. SAV says: Sep 2, 2013 9:22 PM

    Family first.

  21. neilpountney says: Sep 2, 2013 9:28 PM

    As a Patriots fan I love dumping on Ryan and the Jets at every opportunity but he made the right call family comes first!

  22. vavikingfan says: Sep 2, 2013 9:40 PM

    How can anyone criticize him for this?

  23. crazemastercraze says: Sep 2, 2013 9:49 PM

    Who cares. Dead man walking

  24. larrydavid7000 says: Sep 2, 2013 10:03 PM

    They call it Pro Football for a reason people.!!!! Your Dumb Ass Clown of a coach so try to act like one. His son first game as a bench warmer Please.!!!! The water girls had more action than his bench warmer son had all game.

  25. thepftpaperchase says: Sep 2, 2013 10:34 PM

    thefiesty1 says: Sep 2, 2013 8:52 PM

    Scouting Clowney for the first pick?

    You must be a huge college football fan (LOL). BTW, which team was Clowney playing for that night?

  26. ningenito78 says: Sep 2, 2013 10:46 PM

    Ok, sorry media. Attacking a coach’s preparation for going to see his son’s college football game is just hacky piling on. Overboard.

  27. cmdrsmooth says: Sep 2, 2013 10:46 PM

    Good for him.

  28. allen227 says: Sep 2, 2013 10:55 PM

    He’s a dad first and foremost. I respect him more for putting his son before anything on that particular day. Some of you media clowns need to get a life.

  29. mnsadsportsfan says: Sep 2, 2013 11:00 PM

    I want him and the wife to shoot another foot fetish video

  30. thetooloftools says: Sep 2, 2013 11:43 PM

    The NY media is a joke.

  31. matterson20 says: Sep 3, 2013 2:41 AM

    The Switzer quote is a brilliant response to unwarranted criticism.

  32. greatestgamensports says: Sep 3, 2013 4:06 AM

    NY media is by far the worst in this world! Pathetic!!

  33. hehateme2 says: Sep 3, 2013 6:18 AM

    Dead coach walking…. he wasn’t needed as he is not in their plans for much longer.


  34. dogman9 says: Sep 3, 2013 6:25 AM

    Mehta and Lupica are both the biggest jokes in NY sports since Russ Salzberg. And so is the Daily News a match made in heaven.

  35. cobraiv says: Sep 3, 2013 6:46 AM

    He’s a “Dead Man Walking”.

  36. Neftali Ramos says: Sep 3, 2013 7:17 AM

    Dude seriously? He was being a good father and went to see his son play! It’s not like he skipped out on Superbowl week, calm down everybody!

  37. nodindenver says: Sep 3, 2013 9:27 AM

    We need a few more dads in this country to attend their children’s events! Nothing at all wrong with this.

  38. themagicman1223 says: Sep 3, 2013 9:41 AM

    @thefiesty1 You really know your stuff…

  39. mybrunoblog says: Sep 3, 2013 9:53 AM

    There has been so much Ryan and Jets bashing going on that I am acually becoming sympathetic to them.

  40. ravenssbxlvii says: Sep 3, 2013 10:19 AM

    Not a Jets fan by any means, but come on media, this is a stretch. As a father of 2, they will come before ANYTHING, including my job.

  41. kingpel says: Sep 3, 2013 10:33 AM

    I have piled on Rex for a lot of things but this isn’t one of those times. Let the man watch his kid play in peace.

  42. kingpel says: Sep 3, 2013 10:36 AM

    thefiesty1 says: Sep 2, 2013 8:52 PM

    Scouting Clowney for the first pick?

    21 thumbs up for this? Ha. Classic.

  43. fmc651 says: Sep 3, 2013 12:08 PM

    What a fun game to watch. I enjoyed it from my home. Being there would have been a blast.

  44. fmc651 says: Sep 3, 2013 12:12 PM

    Jets and Cowboys get way too much attention for being noncontenders.

  45. dsimp724 says: Sep 3, 2013 12:57 PM

    Imagine if cromartie wanted to go to his all kids games

  46. jwcarlson says: Sep 3, 2013 1:36 PM

    I’d like these “journalists” to ask Andy Reid, Tony Dungy, and Joe Philbin if they think that Rex Ryan was “right” in taking time to watch his kid play ball.

  47. rajo88 says: Sep 3, 2013 2:20 PM

    If he didn’t go, New York media would have blasted him for being a poor father.

  48. zeke2517 says: Sep 3, 2013 2:40 PM

    Right. Like there’s no such thing as cell phones. There is no possible way to finalize the roster if Rex is not physically there.

    Let’s go out of our way to trash everything involving the Jets. They will be better than you morons think, by the way.

  49. pftstory says: Sep 3, 2013 2:58 PM

    We praise some coaches (and players) for putting in “28 hour days” in preparation for the next game. Others we blame the extended hours as a sign of mixed up priorities and the cause of their childrens drug problems and drug related deaths.

    But if your team appears to be in shambles, and people wonder who is in charge, I think it is legit to question why he needs “time with is family.” He is not watching him play. He is actually not all that near him as he rides the bench and dad sits in the stands. He prolly doesn’t have much time to speak with him in person before or after the game.
    It’s not this great bonding moment.
    And though training camp has just ended and the coach has hopefully been a very busy man. He did just finish “spending time with his family” during the off-season.
    I’m sure a great many other fathers, with less responsibilities, did not travel to see their son ride the bench for the first time this weekend.
    Rex signed up for this.
    If coaches of other teams did this, yes you would not hear the questions. Because odds are those coaches are/were not overseeing a pending disaster, and if they are, they didn’t go.

  50. hvoigt21 says: Sep 3, 2013 4:05 PM

    Good grief…..the jets fans get what they deserve…complaining about a coach going to his sons football…..for Christ’s sake,,,,give the man a break.

  51. axespray says: Sep 4, 2013 1:02 AM

    Switzer lashed out at Johnson, saying, “My family is a priority for me, my kids are. Jimmy Johnson has told the world that his family doesn’t mean anything to him.”
    Wow… That was a BURN.

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