IRVING, Texas – Defensive coordinator/quote machine Rob Ryan’s 20-minute press conference featured one Shakespeare reference and no trash talk.
Well, at least no trash talk that will end up on a bulletin board outside an NFL locker room. He did throw a few playful jabs at reporters.
Ryan readily admitted his gum-flapping did the Cowboys no good last week, taking the brunt of the blame again for the butt-kicking the Eagles gave their NFC East rivals. But Ryan found a question about whether the 34-7 whipping affected his swagger quite funny.
“You jest at scars and never felt the wound,” Ryan replied. "That’s Romeo and Juliet, for you guys that don’t know.”
Then he answered the question in more fitting Ryan fashion.
“Uh, hell no,” Ryan said. “I mean, c’mon, we’ve all had bad moments. I’ve seen your telecasts and every once in a while, I’m not going to say you, but I’ve seen Babe [Laufenberg] screw up a time or two. Look, we’ve all had our moments. That was my moment. I just had a few more people watching. It wasn’t my best, but hell, let’s get it on. We’ll be fine.”
A week ago, the “all-hype team” comment Ryan made during training camp in reference to the Eagles was all the rage. He fanned the flames a bit last Friday by declaring that the Cowboys would “really kick their ass” if the Eagles needed his motivation.
Ryan felt like he had a foot in his mouth by the end of the first quarter in Philly. By that time, the Eagles had already marched down the field for two touchdowns and were well on their way to a blowout win, for which Ryan took all the blame afterward.
“I think I motivated their entire team a little bit extra and probably put a little too much pressure on our guys, which is really not what we want to do,” Ryan said. “So that’s why I felt the whole thing was my fault, and it really was. There’s no one else to blame but, hell, the guy in front of you, but that doesn’t happen very often.
“It’s not going to be a weekly press conference where I screw something up. It’s not gonna happen. It usually happens the other way around, probably the other guys’ locker room where they’re crying the next week.”
So does this mean Ryan is going to deny his good buddies in the media golden nuggets of trash talk from now on?
“Hell, I hope so,” Ryan said with a laugh. “I can’t make any guarantees about that. Sometimes I say things that apparently other coaches don’t, but hell, that’s the way it is. I try to say the right thing, but that’s usually when I screw up.”
Ryan is much more confident that the Dallas defense will bounce back from a bad game than he is in his ability to mind his manners while talking to the media.