New York Jets: Why Rex Ryan Will Return Regardless of 2011 Season's Outcome

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New York Jets: Why Rex Ryan Will Return Regardless of 2011 Season's Outcome
Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images

For the first time in three years, Rex Ryan may be in danger of losing his job as head coach of the New York Jets

Entering this week, Ryan's team is 6-5 and is one or two losses away from missing the playoffs as they are barely in the hunt.

Following two consecutive wins to start the seasom, the Jets went on a terrible run after losing All-Pro center Nick Mangold to an ankle injury during the Jaguars game as they dropped three games in a row on the road.

The Jets were able to rebound and entered their bye week with a winning record.

But Ryan and the Jets could not keep the winning streak going as they went on another skid, dropping another game to the Patriots at home in a game anticipated to be the biggest win for the Jets in recent years as they could have taken sole possession of the AFC East. Instead of taking the lead, the Jets fell back in the standings and were looking at a wild card spot at best.

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Things got worse when the Jets took a trip to the mile high city to play against Tim Tebow and the Broncos.  In a game the Jets should have won by a large margin, their offense could not produce. Rather than remaining at the top of the list for teams "in the hunt" or sitting on the No. 6 seed, the Jets dropped into the AFC Wild Card abyss.

Luckily, the Jets were able to take advantage of some of the extra days between the Broncos game and last weeks Bills game.  They were able to pull out another big victory against a divisional rival that was in the same position entering the bout.

The Jets' backs are up against the wall, but regardless of whether the team misses the playoffs, Ryan will be back. Here is why.

First, Ryan is still a winning coach who has led his team to the playoffs in his first two years as head coach.  

In each of those two playoff appearances, Ryan was able to get his team to the AFC Championship Game and in both cases was a half of solid play away from making it to the Super Bowl, especially in 2010 against the Colts.  

 

Something else the front office would not want to risk is trying to find a head coach if they were to fire him.  The only way it would work is if they were to try and hire from the inside.  Over the last few off seasons as coaches have gone in and out of teams, one of the coaches from the Jets being spoken about as potential head coach material is offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer.

Those that follow the Jets know that Brian Schottenheimer would make a terrible head coach and would drive the team into the ground; he has already shown his ability to do that with this year's offense.  

The only somewhat logical decision would be to name assistant head coach and offensive line coach Bill Callahan as the new head coach.  The only thing about Callahan is that they had a chance to promote him after 2008 when they were looking for a new head coach, so if they didn't hire him then, they wouldn't try to hire him now?

Therefore, they would have to try and find a coach outside the organization, which would possibly mean cleaning house if he wants to bring in people he knows and install a new system.  

You cannot also forget that the players love Rex Ryan. Last year, Sports Illustrated asked 279 players which coach they would want to play for and 21 percent said Ryan.  Ryan came in first in the voting, and the next best was Mike Tomlin with 12 percent.  Getting rid of Rex Ryan would likely mean a major backlash from the players.

All in all, it would be very tough for the New York Jets to can their current head coach no matter what happens by the end of Week 17.  He has plenty of great qualities that make him loved by his players, allowing him to get great effort out of many of them.

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