As Rex Ryan prepares for what is expected to be his final home game as the Jets’ coach on Sunday, let’s take a stroll down memory lane to the greatest speech in the history of HBO’s “Hard Knocks’’ series.
It came in 2010, which Ryan helped make the highest-rated season of the show, thanks to material such as this in a speech to the team at a Philadelphia hotel the night before the preseason finale against the Eagles.
“You guys know me – that I’m about as positive a guy as there is. I believe our team is better than every [expletive] team in the league. I believe our players are better than any players in the league, right? Those are true statements. That’s how I believe.
“But, the team’s only going so far, if I’m the only guy that leads. The team is only going so far. I’m not a great leader, OK? I’m not a great leader, I can’t lead myself, this whole group of men. We ain’t gonna win guys, if it’s about me. I’m sitting back waiting for us to understand the team that we said we were gonna be.
“What the [expletive] are we waiting on? What are we waiting on? Do you want it or not? Do you understand there’s a price to pay? Can we have fun? You’re damn right! I demand that we have fun. Now there’s a difference between having fun and being a [expletive].
“Our defense was a [expletive] when we went to Hofstra, eating a bunch of [expletive] cheeseburgers, before we go stretch and all that. That’s being a jackass. You’ll be a world champion, but not like this. We won’t win it. We’ll sit back and say ‘Why didn’t we do it?’ We didn’t do it because where were our [expletive] priorities?
“How about our offense? When are we gonna put it together? When are we gonna put it together? Can we not run the ball down their throats every snap? Can we not throw anytime we wanna [expletive] throw it?
“Let’s make sure we play like [expletive] New York Jets and not some [expletive] [expletive] team. That’s what I wanna see tomorrow. Do we understand what the [expletive] I wanna see tomorrow? Let’s go eat a goddamn snack!’’