November 21, 2011
FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- New York Jets head coach Rex Ryan is feeling a little lighter in the wallet these days, thanks to a $75,000 fine handed down by the league on Monday morning for his latest foot-in-the-mouth moment.
Ryan was caught on camera two Sundays ago during halftime of the Jets' Week 10 loss to the New England Patriots, responding to a fan's taunt that Bill Belichick was better than him by yelling back "Shut the [bleep] up." The next day, Ryan apologized for his remarks, making no excuses for his reaction to the heckling. Then, on Monday morning after a week of investigation, the league took action.
A league source confirmed to Yahoo! Sports on Monday morning that the NFL fined Ryan $75,000 for his remarks. Under the terms of his contract signed in February 2009, it would take Ryan 9 1/2 days of his salary to pay off the fine.
"I received the notice today from commissioner [Roger] Goodell, I won't appeal it. The commissioner has a tough job, I'm a NFL lifer, I know I represent the NFL, I represent the Jets," Ryan said. "I'm accountable for my actions so I won't appeal it."
This isn't the first time that Ryan has failed to put his best foot forward, including two years ago during an MMA event in Miami when he responded to more heckling by giving the crowd the finger. The most recent hefty fine seemed to be a response from the league to infraction No. 2 from Ryan, and the Jets head coach made no excuses about it.
"I just know that it was a mistake and I've owned up that, no question about it. I'm not going to appeal it, because quite honestly, the man's made a decision and his decision is that I should be fined $75,000 and that's the way it is," Ryan said. "I just want to get it behind me; obviously it's a mistake that I made and I'm responsible for my actions and I haven't denied that one bit."
Last week, Ryan said he spoke to Goodell to let him know he was sorry for the moment and his lapse in judgment.
"To be a coach in the National Football League is an honor and I don't want to be the guy to put a black eye on this or whatever. I just want to put it behind me and move forward," Ryan said.
"I talked to Roger before and I wanted to apologize to him. I never denied that I made a mistake, I did make a mistake."
Kristian R. Dyer can be followed at twitter.com/KristianRDyer
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