Rex Ryan offered up a mea culpa today, publicly apologizing for his verbal barb hurled at Norv Turner yesterday.
Ryan said on a conference call with San Diego media that he would have a pair of Super Bowl rings by now if the Chargers had hired him rather than Turner in 2007. Realizing how it could be interpreted, Ryan phoned Turner following yesterday's call to make sure he knew it wasn't a slight.
Still, Ryan has taken heat for his comments and made sure he let everyone know today that it was totally his fault for saying such a thing.
"It’s all on me. I’m guilty, absolutely," Ryan said. "It was unintentional. I did call Norv. I won’t get into that conversation, but it was unintentional. I think we are even, though, because he did get me with a great shot, there’s no question. So I think we are even.
"I do think I’ll be able to get my relationship back with Norv and I think we’ll be ok. The one I do worry about is [Mike] Tannenbaum obviously. But he won’t speak to me or anything else now."
Turner, who typically doesn't say anything interesting, actually fired back at Ryan yesterday.
"I hadn't seen his quote and I was a little bit surprised by the call," Turner told reporters in San Diego. "And then after I saw the quote, I didn't have a chance to ask him this, but I was wondering if he had those rings with the ones he's guaranteed the last couple of years."
Some also thought Ryan was taking a shot at Tannenbaum, the Jets' general manager, by saying the Chargers had a roster loaded with talent. Ryan quipped that's not even close to being accurate.
"I wouldn't trade this team for anybody's," Ryan said, "and I’ve said that forever. That’s why I made the joke about Tannenbaum, because that’s the most ridiculous thing. That’s more ridiculous than my comment."
The players also brushed off Ryan's words about the Chargers' roster.
"I think he was just commenting on the amount of talent they have," veteran right guard Brandon Moore said. "They are loaded offensively. They were No. 1 and No. 1 [on] offense and defense last year. He was just commenting on the type of talent, and the playmakers they’ve got on that team, and in a way a compliment that could be taken the way it was not intended."
Of course, these kind of instances happen frequently with Ryan. But he admitted he's a little bothered by this latest verbal gaffe.
"Obviously, I wish this one never happened," he said. "It was just clearly … it really was unintentional. I don’t know what other word to use. I was praising the heck out of them because I think they’ve got a great organization, and I talked about [GM] A.J. Smith.
"He really did, I thought, put me on the map, as far as I don’t think I was considered a head coach until A.J. brought me in. It led to me getting three interviews the next year and then landing this job. So I really thank him for doing that, and thinking enough of me that he would consider me a head coach.
"So I really didn’t mean those things sincerely. It just happens."