Rex Ryan and his brother Rob may sit at the same table during the holidays every year, but they haven’t walked the same NFL sideline as coaches since 1995 – that is until now.
Late Sunday night the Bills’ made it official via a written statement that Rob Ryan would be joining Buffalo’s staff under the official title of assistant head coach/defense.
Fox Sports’ Alex Marvez, was the first to report that the former Saints’ defensive coordinator was going to be joining Buffalo’s coaching staff for 2016.
— Alex Marvez (@alexmarvez) January 11, 2016
Rob Ryan spent the last three seasons as the Saints’ defensive signal caller, before being fired by New Orleans back on Nov. 16. Under Ryan this season the Saints’ defense finished 31st in yards allowed, also surrendering a league worst 29.8 points per game.
After being fired, Rob Ryan spent a week in early December at One Bills Drive, assisting Buffalo’s coaching staff as they prepared to take on the Philadelphia Eagles.
When asked that week about a potential coaching reunion with his brother in Buffalo, Rex Ryan said “You never say never. … It is fun to be around him, there’s no question about it, and I know he’s a great coach. But I think we purposely have tried to set different courses and things. But I never rule out that possibility.”
In tonight’s statement from the franchise, Rex Ryan said he is “excited to have Rob join our staff and I think he will be a great asset for our defense. He has a tremendous working knowledge of our schemes and I look forward to his input,” adding, “on a personal note, it’s been a number of years since we have worked together and so we are both really looking forward to this opportunity.”
It was a disappointing year overall for Buffalo’s defense under current defensive coordinator Dennis Thurman, which finished 19th overall in total yards allowed and registered just 21 sacks a year removed from leading the league with 57.