Last year, Ryan's son Seth, a high school cornerback and wide receiver, suffered a concussion while playing in a game.
"Iâm proud that my kid plays,â Ryan said Saturday, following the second day of Jets' rookie minicamp.
âHe had a concussion last year. Thatâs part of it. Obviously, I think that we are so much further along now. When you look at the league now ... nobody is forcing guys to come back. Thatâs just the opposite. I think our trainers do an unbelievable job. Our doctors do a great job. Theyâre not going to put a young man out there unless they feel heâs healthy enough to come back and play. The same thing with my son. Obviously you got concerns. It happens."
NFL Network analyst and former NFL quarterback Kurt Warner made news last week when he said heâd prefer his children not play football because of the head-injury risk.
"Itâs an unfortunate part of the game," Ryan said. "I truly believe everybodyâs working to try to get this thing minimized. Weâve got to protect our players. ... We try to do that with the helmets, with the way the trainers and everything else. But will I still have my son playing? Absolutely.â
Ryan talked about what it takes to play in the NFL.
"The thing that separates football from other sports ... I think it takes courage to play football. Thatâs why I think guys are so special that play this game. ... Line up on that kickoff team and youâre running down that field and you donât know where itâs coming from, but you know itâs coming. And youâre scared but you go anyway. That tells you a little bit about this game ... that you got to overcome fear."
He summed it up by saying, "It takes somebody special to play this game.â