It should go without saying that the Jets represent everything that I hate about having a sports rival. At this point, I find them to be worse than the New York Yankees (that may change in a few weeks). Take this down as possibly the first time I’ve used the word hate ever on this site. I have disliked the Jets for years now and this year especially, there has been an increase of dislike after Kerry Rhodes's comments (who I can only hate on for the week he’s playing the Pats – he’s actually awesome) and some of the other Jets’ antics. When I heard Rex Ryan’s message to the season ticket holders, the first thing came to mind wasn’t the fact that I couldn’t stand the Jets.
It was the fact that he is REALLY trying to change the culture of the Jets organization. And I think he has.
I remember when I watched him as Defensive Coordinator of the Baltimore Ravens and he just had this swagger about him that made him look like the real deal. If you were to talk to any of the Ravens’ defensive players, they would be the first to tell you that Rex Ryan was a genius and an influence to the entire culture of the team. That Ravens defense dominated the league for many years and if it weren’t for the team getting old, they’d still be amongst the top 3 defensive teams in the NFL.
As a head coach, you wonder if he’d be able to do the same with a team that has struggled to become a championship contender since the early days of Joe Namath. Judging by the way the Jets performed last week against the Houston Texans and then this past Sunday against my beloved Patriots, I am nearly convinced he’s changed things.
Did you know that the New York Jets is the only team in the NFL to have yet to ALLOW an offensive touchdown? Yup. The Jets.
When you are able to come into a new place, filled with unstable rookies and very “settled-in-their-ways” veterans, and convince them that not only can they become winners, but they can become winners by following your lead, there’s no doubt that you are a leader. It takes strength, courage and a lot of confidence to be able to go into a place like that and shake things up the way Rex Ryan has.
Is there anyone in your life who can do/has done that to you?
Do you even need someone? Can you change your own culture?
Sometimes, all it takes is a swift kick in the ass and a good old-fashioned reality check to convince someone to TAKE ACTION instead of sitting around waiting for something or someone to happen. This is something you can do yourself. Motivation. It can get you fired up and ready to take on the world.
But what if something goes wrong? What if you get leveled and you’re looking up at the sky wondering, “What the hell just happened?” Do you have your own process of getting back up and bouncing back? I’m sure Rex Ryan has his system that he’s plugged into the entire team. I know I have my system of being able to bounce back from life’s counterpunches.
This is just another element of what it takes to be successful and as much as I can’t stand the Jets, I am hoping that he can prove that energy and optimism can change a culture.
Is there a way he can be successful and the Jets STILL lose?
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