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NFL probing vulgar comments that Jets' Ryan directed at fan

  • By Dan Hanzus NFL.com
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Rex Ryan could be in hot water with the NFL after a video clip of a salty verbal exchange with a fan surfaced online.

The video, which was taken as the Jets headed to their locker room at halftime of Sunday night's 37-16 loss to the Patriots -- features an unseen fan telling Ryan that New England coach Bill Belichick is "better than" him.

Ryan responded by telling the fan to be quiet, though he said so in a far more colorful way.

NFL spokesman Greg Aiello told The Associated Press that the league is aware of the 49-second video shot by a fan, and a contrite Ryan acknowledged the incident during his Monday news conference, saying "sometimes my emotions get the best of me."

"I obviously, you know, made a mistake," Ryan said. "I was full of emotion and just popped off, and obviously I know I represent the National Football League and I know I represent the Jets. I know it was a mistake, and I apologize. This is who I am. I made a mistake.

"I'm about as big a competitor as there is, and at that time, I was in no mood to hear anything," added Ryan, who had been upset about a Mark Sanchez timeout that allowed the Patriots to drive for a go-ahead touchdown. "But I also understand that I've got to handle that better."

Jets general manager Mike Tannenbaum said in a statement he had met with Ryan about the incident and that the coach "knows that his behavior was not acceptable."

The Jets fined Ryan $50,000 in 2010 after a cell-phone camera caught the coach giving the middle finger to a fan during a mixed martial arts event in Florida.

But Ryan might not have been the only coach caught using vulgar language Sunday night. The New York Post reported that as Belichick left the field, he put his arm around his son and mocked the Jets' defense with the use of an obscenity.


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Asked about the report Monday, Belichick predictably was tight-lipped.

"I don't remember it that way," he said. "I don't think we're here to talk about that. If you want to talk about the game, great."

Ryan had some fun with the topic when asked about it and joked that he said the same thing to his son after the Jets beat the Patriots' No. 1-ranked offense in the playoffs in January.

"Realistically, you know my son wasn't at that playoff game, right?" Ryan said. "It sounded like a hell of a story, though, didn't it? It's something I'll bring up to him after we beat them in the playoffs again this year."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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