Sean Ryan is in his first year as a quarterbacks coach, so when he walks into meeting rooms and sees two former No. 1 overall draft picks and a two-time Super Bowl MVP looking at him with a combined 20 years of NFL quarterbacking experience, it must be daunting.
But Ryan said having those players – Eli Manning in particular – makes his job easier, not harder.
“He’s incredibly coachable,” Ryan said. “You couldn’t ask for a better guy to coach, to be honest with you. He never comes across as though he knows everything. He’s been in the system, now, going into nine years, there’s things that he knows. But every point that you make, even though he knows it, he takes it as just something he’s hearing again. It’s being reinforced again.”
Ryan coached the wide receivers for two years and was promoted when Mike Sullivan left the Giants to become the offensive coordinator for the Bucs. So Ryan did have a relationship with the quarterbacks, he was just used to seeing them from the other end of the passes.
“Obviously, a lot more goes into it,” Ryan said. “You’re more focused on the details of the run game. Some facets are a little bit different. Getting in a little bit more of understanding blocking schemes up front and talking about those and how things play out. It’s been a challenge, but it’s been a nice change.”
So how does a guy new at his job come in and tell Eli Manning that he needs to get better at something? Ryan said the good part of the job is that he doesn’t have to.
“I think every good player, great players like he is, Super Bowl MVP type of players, you almost don’t have to do that because they want to get better,” Ryan said. “He sits down after the season and says, ‘This is what I can improve on and this is what I need to do.’ And you just reinforce that. You bring another aspect to it: ‘Hey did you think about this? Can we work on this?’ But those great players, they’re that way because they push themselves. So you’re not in a position where having to always point out to him. He comes to you with things. ‘Hey, I want to work on this. I know I can get better here.’ Because he’s like that as a player, it makes that easy part of my job.”