A Sporting News poll of anonymous NFL players revealed that the New York Jets' Rex Ryan is considered the most overrated head coach in the league by a large number of players, receiving more than twice as many votes as any other coach.
Ryan received 35 out of 103 votes, taken from players on 27 teams with the rule that they could not pick players or coaches on their own team. 17 coaches were named by at least one player, but only two received more than 10 votes, and Ryan more than doubled second-place finisher Bill Belichick.
The poll featured a quote from an anonymous player, who was identified as playing offense for a team in the AFC:
"His coaching style is over the top. Some of the things he does in front of the cameras are way over the top. You put that with the New York media and he has a pretty big reputation, I guess. I don't even know if you'd call him overrated anymore because it's gonna be a couple of years since he was in the AFC finals. He's pretty funny, and he's a pretty good coach. But not THAT good."
Ryan, now in his fourth year in New York, caught the public eye in his first two years with the Jets with a pair of conference championship appearances and a boisterous personality displayed both with the media and on the Jets' season of Hard Knocks in 2010. However, his team collapsed in 2011 and at 3-5, looks likely to miss the playoffs for a second straight year. Although the former Ravens assistant is well-respected for defensive schemes that made the Jets dominant for a few years, many have questioned whether his coaching is to blame for the lack of production put forth by the team's offense.