The New Orleans Saints obviously knew what they were getting into when they hired a Ryan brother.
According to Andy Fenelon of NFL.com, the Saints put a provision in Rob Ryan‘s contract that says the newly hired defensive coordinator can’t speak to the media unless it’s first approved by the team’s senior vice president of communications, Greg Bensel. That is likely in response to the Ryans’ proclivity for brash statements and victory guarantees.
Just last year, in fact, Ryan guaranteed two victories while with the Cowboys. The defensive coordinator said Dallas would beat the Falcons on Nov. 4 and Redskins on Nov. 22. The Cowboys lost both of those games.
There is a problem with this stipulation in the contract — it’s a violation of the NFL media policy, as Bart Hubbuch of the New York Post pointed out. The policy states that offensive and defensive coordinators have to meet with the media at least once every practice week between Monday and Friday.
After hearing of the original report, Bensel went on Twitter and denied it.
"Report that Rob Ryan needs to get my OK before speaking to media is 100% false," Bensel tweeted. "He like all of our coaches, follow norm league media rules."
While the thought behind the provision was a great one, unfortunately it won’t be allowed by the NFL. It will help that Ryan is coaching under Sean Payton this season rather than Jason Garrett. At times the past two seasons, it appeared Ryan, not Garrett, was the head coach of the Cowboys due to the way he handled the media and how often he was shown by television cameras on the sidelines.
After getting fired by the Cowboys, Ryan said it would take “like five minutes” for him to find a new job. It took a month before getting hired by the Saints. Ryan said he was shocked when he got fired by the Cowboys, and did a little boasting on Saturday night as he was leaving the Golden State Warriors-Dallas Mavericks game.
“Better coaches than me have been fired,” Ryan said to ESPN.com. “Just not many.”
Ryan has been known to keep his mouth shut in the past, and he learned it from the best. Ryan was the Patriots’ linebackers coach from 2000 to 2003. Of course, teams are allowed to put a gag order on position coaches, but unfortunately the Saints won’t be so lucky.