Rex and Brian: The Rising Sons
SONS OF FAMOUS COACHES LEAD JETS INTO 2009 SEASON
Jet fans are hoping Rex Ryan can repeat the defensive magic he worked during his time with the Ravens. His father, Buddy Ryan, was part of the Jets coaching staff in 1969 when they beat the then Baltimore Colts.
That Jets win remains the biggest upset in Super Bowl history, even more so than the 2008 New York football Giants.
On the flip side, Marty Schottenheimer, as head coach of the San Diego Chargers, lost to the underdog Jets in overtime during the 2005 playoffs.
Current Jets offensive coordinator and son Brian Schottenheimer was the quarterbacks coach for the Chargers at that time.
Ryan followed in his father's shoes, and became known as a defensive stalwart. The younger Schottenheimer also followed his father into the NFL, but on the other side of the football.
Marty Schottenheimer was a NFL linebacker, Brian played quarterback at Florida behind Heisman winner Danny Wuerffel.
The elder Schottenheimer earned his NFL stripes as the defensive coordinator for the Cleveland Browns in 1980 before taking over the reigns to the team in 1984.
The Jets defense is expected to fulfill their potential, equipped with an athletically gifted squad. However, the Jets offense is where the season can be made or lost.
Rex Ryan's strongest move to-date as head coach is retaining Brian Schottenheimer as the offensive coordinator after being passed over for the Jets top coaching job.
With the Chargers, Brian Schottenheimer is given credit for reviving Drew Brees' all but dead career.
With the Jets, he implemented a shotgun offense into the playbook a few years back, and has accomplished a lot in less than ideal circumstances considering the frequent change of quarterbacks in his four years as offensive coordinator.
While in San Diego, he watched one quarterback competition play out back in 2005, with Brees and top five draft pick Philip Rivers.
Being through that experience will help him manage this year's battle between Kellen Clemens and Mark Sanchez.
He has a solid running game right now with Thomas Jones leading the way and Leon Washington (thankfully, he's back), and possibly even third round draft pick Shonn Greene will get some touches.
What remains to be answered is whether a powerful running game will be enough to open up a successful passing game with two unproven quarterbacks and a young wide receiving corps.
Schottenheimer claims Cotchery is ready to be given the chance as a number one wide receiver (hey, he has had 80 receptions two of his last three seasons) and a supporting cast of Chansi Stuckey, Brad Smith, and speedster David Clowney will try to make up for the loss of Laveranues Coles.
Schottenheimer has all summer to hone his offense, as does Ryan on the D.
If the Jets are going to make a Super Bowl appearance within the next four years as Rex Ryan has promised, the second generation of two famous NFL coaches are going to have to make the tough decisions in order to once again reach the Promised Land, 40 years after Rex watched his father help lead the J-E-T-S to victory.
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