Hey, Nutrisystem, Give Plump New York Jets Coach Rex Ryan a Call

Cecil HarrisCorrespondent IAugust 4, 2009

FLORHAM PARK, NJ - MAY 02:  Head coach Rex Ryan of the New York Jets walks on the field during minicamp on May 2, 2009 at the Atlantic Health Jets Training Center in Florham Park, New Jersey.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

Rex Ryan can’t help but be entertaining. The New York Jets first-year head coach is a natural in front of a microphone with his shoot-from-the-lip style and sharp wit.


Among his best sound bytes at Jets’ camp yesterday at the State University of New York at Cortland:


“We want to be the team that nobody else wants to play, and I believe we’re going to be that team.”


“I want to win. I don’t care if it’s Joe Namath coming back to play quarterback for us. I want to win.”


“I know we’ll have a great defense. [Ravens offensive coordinator] Cam Cameron used to tell me last season that game day was easy because he didn’t have to go up against my defense.”


But Ryan, the former Ravens defensive coordinator, said something else in an interview with ESPN Radio in New York that has me worried he may not be able to fulfill the terms of his Jets’ contract.


Ryan admitted he weighs 347 pounds and is nearing the end of a five-day liquid diet.


347 pounds? A five-day liquid diet? Just five days?


“I can’t wait to eat some real food,” Ryan told ESPN hosts Michael Kay and Dom LaGreca.


Neither host asked the logical follow-up question, “What kind of real food?”


If Ryan intended to chow down on a super burger and fries with a triple-thick chocolate shake and strawberry cheesecake, then the five-day liquid diet might as well have not happened.


Remember when Oprah Winfrey wheeled ninety seven pounds of fat onto the stage many years ago to show off her new trim physique after a liquid diet? Well, the talk-show queen put all that weight back on, and then some.


All of Ryan’s success as an NFL assistant and his enormous potential as a head coach won’t matter if he develops serious health problems because he can’t win the battle of the bulge.


If Nutrisystem hasn’t contacted Ryan already, what are they waiting for?


This would seem the perfect marketing marriage: a charismatic NFL head coach in the world’s No. 1 media market and a product that purports to help people shed massive amounts of fat while eating good, nutritious food.


You’ve seen those TV commercials featuring testimonials from Dan Marino, Don Shula, Chris Berman, Mike Golic, Billie Jean King etc.


Well, let’s find out if Nutrisystem really works. Coach Ryan needs help. Now.


Obesity has reached epidemic proportions in America. Ryan could not only improve his health dramatically by dropping a hundred (pounds, not dollars) by the end of the season, but he could also inspire countless other Americans to do likewise.


If the 6-foot-2 Ryan takes off a hundred pounds and keeps it off, then Nutrisystem can give itself a lofty title like “the worldwide leader in weight loss.”


Then they can give Oprah a call.