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Rex: Schotty will return

Rex Ryan defended offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer (above)

Rex Ryan defended offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer (above) against criticisms of the offense in Sunday's loss to Pittsburgh. (Jan. 21, 2011) Photo Credit: Joe Epstein

Brian Schottenheimer isn't going anywhere.

Rex Ryan made that perfectly clear today when asked about the impending status of his offensive coordinator, who's taking heat for some of the play calls in yesterday's 24-19 loss to the Steelers in the AFC Championship game.

Schottenheimer is going to be back for a sixth season with the Jets.

"Yes, absolutely," Ryan said.

Schottenheimer has drawn the ire of the Jets' faithful once again, especially for that goal line sequence in the fourth quarter with the Jets trailing 24-10 and facing a first-and-goal at the 2-yard line. Running back Shonn Greene ran for a yard on first down, and the Jets attempted passes on successive plays, with quarterback Mark Sanchez misfiring on both to set up fourth down.

LaDainian Tomlinson was stuffed for no gain, thwarting the Jets' golden opportunity to draw within a touchdown at 24-17 with 7:44 remaining. 

"If we had the benefit of hindsight, we should have probably just ran Shonn Greene or L.T. four straight times," Ryan said. "That's easy to look back on it. We clearly thought that we had some good plays designed and it never worked out."

Wideout Santonio Holmes was also rather critical of Schottenheimer not utilizing him on the game's first few plays, and when he was why he was on the sidelines and not in the game, Holmes said: "Ask Coach Schottenheimer what was the reason behind that.

"Ask Coach Schottenheimer. I just had to go with the gameplan. That's the way things were called, and that's what I had to do."

Asked if he was given a heads up by the coaching staff that he wasn't going to start, Holmes remained tight-lipped: "Ask Coach Schottenheimer what happened. He'll explain everything to you. I don't have an answer for that."

Ryan wasn't pleased with Holmes' criticism.

"No, that's not the way I like to operate," he said. "It just talks of the emotions that you're feeling at the time. Just like I was saying nobody has a right to write negative comments about us. That's a ridiculous statement. But it was just -- it was raw. It was like that's the emotion of it at the time, you know? Those are things, obviously, you wish you had back."  

But not all it the offense's struggles could be totally pinned on Schottenheimer's shoulders. Sanchez said his headset went on the fritz several times -- including on that goal line sequence -- making it difficult to quickly get the plays in rapidly.

Ryan wasn't ready about to make any excuses, though.

"It's your team's responsibility about the headphones," Ryan said. "That's not why we lost the game. It's something that happened, but that's not why we lost the game."

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