Rex Ryan gets personal once again, this time with Bill Belichick
The notoriously brash coach is saying the same thing about this week's matchup with New England Coach Bill Belichick as he did about last week's meeting with Indianapolis Colts quarterback Peyton Manning: "It's personal."
"This is about Bill Belichick vs. Rex Ryan," Ryan said Monday. "There's no question. It's personal. It's about him against myself, and that's what it's going to come down to."
After getting his first playoff victory against Manning in three tries Saturday, Ryan turned his focus on this weekend's AFC divisional round game against Belichick and the Patriots. The Jets won the teams' first matchup of the season, 28-14, in Week 2 but were routed, 45-3, in New England last month.
"I recognize that he's the best and all that,"Ryan said of Belichick. "But I'm just trying to be the best on Sunday, and I plan on being the best coach on Sunday. That's what it is. I recognize that my level has to come up, and he's going to get my best shot. He's going to get everything I have on Sunday, and if he slips at all, we're going to beat him."
Belichick gave an uncharacteristically playful response to Ryan's coach vs. coach scenario.
"I might have a little quickness on him,"an uncharacteristically playful Belichick said. "He's probably got a little more strength and power on me. So, I don't think you'll see either one of us out there making any blocks or tackles or runs or throws or catches. At least you won't see me doing it. It's probably a good thing for our team."
Ryan also took a jab at Patriots quarterback Tom Brady last week, saying nobody studies the game like Manning, even though Brady thinks he does. Brady, a three-time Super Bowl champion and likely league MVP, responded Monday, saying Ryan might be right but he's going to keep preparing the way he always has.
-- Chuck Schilken
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Photo: Bill Belichick, left, shakes hands with Rex Ryan. Credit: William Perlman / US Presswire