FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- New York Jets coach Rex Ryan laughed off a leaguewide player survey that named him the most overrated coach in the NFL, saying he was just happy to finish ahead of nemesis Bill Belichick.
"My first thought was, I looked at it and I saw who was second," Ryan said Wednesday, alluding to the New England Patriots' coach. "I was like, 'Hey, I finally beat Belichick in something.' I knew it would take time, but I finally got him."
The Sporting News conducted an anonymous midseason poll of 103 players from 27 teams. Ryan finished first by a landslide, collecting 35 votes. Belichick was second with 16 votes.
Ryan created a personal rivalry with Belichick, declaring soon after he was hired in 2009 that he didn't take the Jets' job to kiss Belichick's Super Bowl rings. Since then, the Jets have finished second to the Patriots every season in the AFC East.