This Sunday, when the Buffalo Bills host the New York Jets for a game that kicks off at 1 PM, the weather forecast calls for rain and a temperature of about 50 degrees, not that cold, especially if you’re a hardened, foul-mouthed pro football coach. But don’t be surprised when you see Jets coach Rex Ryan wearing mittens for the entire game. Ryan spoke about the decision with Bud Fox News’ Silence Bellows:
“I kind of let my emotions get the better of me at the end of the Pittsburgh game. I shouldn’t have said what I did and I apologize if I offended anyone. For the rest of the season, I’ve really got to try harder to keep it together. Woody [Jets owner Woody Johnson] and I had a real good talk about it. And we decided that just to make sure I don’t flip off any of the refs, maybe it’s best if I wear mittens against the Bills.”
The irrepressible Ryan couldn’t help but add:
“We haven’t decided yet, but if we win and I’m not too pissed off at anybody, I’ll probably take the mittens off when I shake Dougie’s hand.” [Bills coach Doug Marrone]
The NFL fined Ryan $100,000 last week for his outburst at the end of the Jets victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday, November 9. The colorful Jets coach has refused to reveal the object of his anger. As reported on Deadspin:
It’s not clear who this was aimed at. The Steelers had just attempted to bum-rush a kneeldown, but Ryan’s postgame handshake with Mike Tomlin appeared cordial. Alternately, it could have been directed at officials, something Ryan refused to confirm or deny.
The refs might be the culprit. As reported in the New York Post, Ryan doesn’t think that the refs granted Jets quarterback Michael Vick as much protection as they did Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger:
“I thought during the game, I mentioned before, that I never thought our quarterback was as protected as I would have liked to have seen him. That’s a true statement.”
This is Ryan’s third fine: He was docked $50,000 in 2010 for a middle finger salute to a Miami Dolphins fan and penalized $75,000 for directing offensive language toward a fan at half time against the New England Patriots. Given his track record and considering how badly the Jets have played for most of this year, Ryan should probably get ready to wear those mittens for the rest of the season.