Buddy Ryan says Jets will blank Colts

INDIANAPOLIS -- AFC South raconteur Paul Kuharsky and I were sharing a plate of wings when NFL reporter Sal Paolantonio stopped by our booth.


RyanPaolantonio, while unashamedly swiping celery sticks from our plate, shared an exchange he had a few minutes earlier with Buddy Ryan after the New York Jets arrived at their downtown hotel for Sunday afternoon's AFC Championship Game against the Indianapolis Colts.

Ryan predicted a shutout victory for the New York Jets.

Buddy Ryan's son, Rex, is trying to get the Jets into their first Super Bowl since they defeated the Baltimore Colts 41 years ago. Buddy Ryan was a Jets assistant coach. A guy named Joe Namath made a bold proclamation before that game.

Paolantonio, who as a Philadelphia Inquirer reporter rode shotgun with Buddy Ryan when the Eagles' team bus circled Soldier Field the night before the infamous Fog Bowl in 1988, jotted down the dialogue so I could share it on the blog.

Sal Paolantonio: "What do you think of the Jets' chances?"

Buddy Ryan: "Well, we were 16-point underdogs in '68. What are the Jets, seven-point underdogs? So we got a good chance."

SP: "How will you know it's going well in the first half?"

BR: "Nobody scores."

SP: "What's your prediction for the game?"

BR: "Twelve-nuthin'."