Not so, says one team source.
"There is no playoff mandate even though he thinks and management thinks we can make the playoffs," per the source. "That's the goal every year. But it isn't postseason or bust for him. There are a lot of factors that go into it."
The contract extension Ryan received after last season includes one additional guaranteed year through 2015 and future unguaranteed years, a deal that one source described as "window dressing" to NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport. The pact serves as the short-term extension New York wanted while appearing, on the surface, like a long-term deal for Rex.
The working relationship between Ryan and general manager John Idzik has been questioned, but the source said Rex is viewed as a coach "very much in the second year of a rebuilding project."
"There's an understanding about that, so it isn't as simple as, 'Make the playoffs or you get fired, Rex.' It isn't that simple," Dyer was told. "There's a good working relationship with John, they get along very well and Rex is clearly on John's page.
"To say that he's on thin ice or there's a playoff mandate simply isn't true. Far more goes into the decision than that. He won't be judged solely on the basis of if he led the team to the playoffs or not."
It borders on silly to question Ryan's fate in mid-April. NFL head coaches continually exist in a fluid environment where jobs melt away like springtime snow. The fact that anyone has to answer the question emphasizes how much pressure Ryan is under to win, but that's nothing new in Florham Park.