Ex-Jets coach Rex Ryan changes tune after private chat with Robert Saleh

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·2 min read
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

Former Jets coach Rex Ryan changed his tune about Robert Saleh five days after Ryan’s harsh criticism led to a war of words between them.

The two spoke privately this past week after Ryan expressed disgust over the idea of being compared to Saleh. Suddenly, Ryan is a huge fan.

“I was blown away by the guy,” Ryan said Sunday on ESPN. “He’s got a direction for this football team. I’m telling you, Jets fans, the more I talked to him, the more impressed I was with Robert Saleh.”

Ryan said he was “pissed off” on Monday when people compared the two defensive-minded coaches despite the Jets’ 2-7 record and last-place defense.

“Don’t ever compare this Robert Saleh guy to me,” Ryan said following the Jets’ Week 10 loss to the Bills. “Statistically, one time they were a top defense [with the San Francisco 49ers]. Four out of five times they were dead last in their division. They are going to be dead last again, so he’s going to be used to that. To me, I am a little pissed off about it when I heard his background is a lot like yours. No, it isn’t. No, it isn’t.”

Saleh – and his brother – responded to Ryan’s initial comments.

“I’ve never had a conversation with Rex,” Saleh said. “I don’t even know him except for people who know him throughout the league. Obviously, if it’s that personal for him, he knows where to find me.”

Well, Ryan reached out and the two talked things over.

“Taking my call and all that speaks volumes about him,” Ryan continued Sunday. “But it was more about, we put that stuff behind us. But it was about the future of this team, and I’m just telling you something, this guy’s got a great plan and I think they got it right.”

Ryan coached the Jets for six seasons from 2009-2014. He went 46-50 during that stretch, with a 4-2 playoff record that included two AFC Championship appearances in 2009 and 2010.

List

Robert Saleh, wise-cracking brother clap back at Rex Ryan's latest rant