Rex Ryan thinks today’s NFL has the right mix of hitting and safety

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Jets coach Rex Ryan believes that as the NFL has tinkered with the rules to promote player safety, the league has found the right mix of continuing to be a tough, physical sport while simultaneously making the right rules changes to make the game safer for the players.

Ryan told Bob Costas on Costas Tonight that he’s glad the league has forced defensive players to aim for shoulder-to-shoulder hits — not helmet-to-helmet hits — in collisions with defenseless opponents.

“The number one thing is obviously the safety of players,” Ryan said. “Even lowering the target on hitting defenseless players — you know, I love hitting as much as anybody. I think it changes the game, a big hit and things. But you see it . . . when we decided to lower the target on players, it worked. It’s all about player safety but the game is still physical and aggressive.”

Ryan comes from a football family, and he says he’s glad that his son plays high school football, despite the risks associated with concussions. He also said that he has never seen any evidence that his father, former NFL coach Buddy Ryan, orchestrated a program of bounties, the way Gregg Williams (who coached under Buddy with the Houston Oilers) did in New Orleans.

“You’d have to ask my dad if he put a bounty on somebody or whatever. I coached for my dad for two years and never saw anything like that,” Ryan said.

Here’s the video of Ryan’s interview with Costas, which also touches on the arrival of Tim Tebow, and on Ryan’s weight loss:

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7 responses to “Rex Ryan thinks today’s NFL has the right mix of hitting and safety

  1. Good interview.Too bad it sounds like Rex will never see another Super Bowl as long as he is coaching

  2. Rex is a good coach, no doubt about that, but it remains to be seen whether or not he’s cut out to be a head coach. His Dad was a great coordinator but an average HC. It will be interesting to see how this year goes if he does tone it down?

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