Saying Rob Ryan’s dad Buddy Ryan has been around for a long time is a bit of an understatement. To begin with, Buddy was a sergeant in the Korean war, and helped coach the New York Jets in Super Bowl III. Rob has been exposed to his fathers coaching style for a long time so it’s no surprise that similarities between the younger and elder Ryan’s are starting to surface. Saints safety Malcolm Jenkins brought up the similarities in a recent interview:
“They’re all from the same school, the Buddy Ryan defense, so there are a lot of similarities between what Gregg was running and what Rob is bringing,” Jenkins said. “But I think Rob has a few more wrinkles with the 3-4 and everything, and I think we’re going to have fun.”
Of course when NBC’s Pro Football Talk’s managing editor Michael David Smith brought up the situation up he felt compelled to bring up the “B” word, bounty system. Smith is one of the many writers who feel a duty to remind us of past Saints indiscretions almost every time he writes about the Saints. Would I say he’s opinionated? Yes, much like myself. The difference would be that comments disagreeing with our positions don’t disappear under my articles the way they do under Michael David Smith’s.
Given the obvious fact that Buddy liked a 4/3 and a 46 defense, and Rob prefers the 3/4 the similarity is mostly in the philosophy. For those of you unfamiliar with the 46 defense, the formation comprises four down linemen, three linebackers, and four defensive backs. Here’s Buddy Ryan’s own description of his defense with the Houston Oilers:
“Our defensive philosophy is simple. We will do anything and everything it takes to win, within the rules. We can only control what we do on our side of the ball, therefore, we will approach every game with the plan of winning the game with defense.”
At this stage of the game I don’t think we need any more lectures on BountyGate. There’s a lot of difference between Greg Williams embracing what he called a “nasty defense”, Rob Ryan’s “brash demeanor”, and what Jenkins called a “physical, feared defense”. I think we can live with the last two.
On a humorous side note Nakia Hogan pointed out that part of Rob Ryan’s scheme is showing off his four-letter vocabulary skills, which is reminiscent of Gregg Williams. Drew Brees pointed out that he feels like this is our first “normal offseason” since ’09, but I’ll have to say that I’m no longer sure what “normal” is supposed to feel like.
If it feels like winning the Super Bowl, I’m all for that.
Picture Credit: Pic courtesy of fwweekly.com & Exposay.com
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