Miami – Jets head coach Rex Ryan apologized late yesterday for making an obscene gesture at some Dolphins fans while attending a Mixed Martial Arts event Saturday night in Miami.
“It was stupid and inappropriate,” Ryan said in a statement issued through the Jets. “I wouldn't accept that type of behavior from one of the coaches or players and it's unacceptable from me. I apologize to the Jets organization, the National Football League and NFL fans everywhere.”
Jets general manager Mike Tannenbaum criticized his coach for his actions.
“Rex showed extremely poor judgment and his conduct was inappropriate,” Tannenbaum said. “He knows he was wrong, has apologized and we have accepted his apology. Any other actions regarding this incident will be addressed internally by the organization.”
It is uncertain whether Ryan will be fined by the team or the league, or both. Titans owner Bud Adams was fined $250,000 for making a similarly obscene gesture at Bills fans during a Titans-Buffalo game in Nashville last November.
Ryan, who was in Miami to visit with his players at a Pro Bowl practice, flashed his middle finger to Miami resident David M. Hildenbrand and his friends, according to a report in the Miami Herald. It is not known if Ryan was provoked.
“I'd like to thank everybody here in Miami. I know they love me," Ryan said Saturday night in an interview with Strikeforce, the company that hosted the event featuring ex-NFL player Herschel Walker's MMA debut. “I want to just tell everybody in Miami, 'Hey, we're coming to beat you twice next year,’” Ryan said as he was getting booed.
The Jets lost twice to the Dolphins in 2009.