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Rex Ryan: Jets 'were trying to push away from me'

Now happily tucked away in Buffalo with the Bills, Rex Ryan isn't holding back on his time with the New York Jets.

Echoing what he shared with The MMQB's Jenny Vrentas this week, Ryan on Saturday told NFL Media's Kimberly Jones that he could feel his dismissal from New York coming as early as 2013.

"They had a meeting. It was on branding, it was on all this other stuff. Basically, it was clear then that they were trying to push away from me. And for whatever reason, that is fine," Ryan told Jones in a WFAN radio interview. "I never asked to be the face of the franchise, it just turned out that way, but it's the way it is. I am no longer there now.

"In my opinion it was pretty clear, and I am sure it was clear to every person that was in the meeting, which was every employee," Ryan said. "They never should have had that meeting. They should have just told me. They wanted to have it for whatever reason, maybe a new sheriff is in town. So be it, it was no big deal to me, but it was pretty obvious that they were wanting me to take more of a backseat role, which I did. I am a team guy and if that is what they wanted, all they had to do was tell me. But it was pretty obvious to me."

More from Ryan's interview with Kimberly Jones:

  1. Rex didn't hold back on Jace Amaro, the second-year Jets tight end who claimed that Gang Green lacked accountability last season.

"It's not the truth and that's the thing that I was saying. It's absolutely not the truth," Ryan said, adding: "He totally misspoke and you talk about accountable? He's gonna be accountable when we go to play him. So he's gonna be accountable for his comments."

  1. What was Ryan's first reaction when he learned that LeSean McCoy was available: "There was a little pause, like, 'What? OK, let's go for it.' We never felt we were in a real strong position to make a trade. We lacked a first-round pick, but when they looked at our roster, they wanted Kiko Alonso and I understand that. Kiko Alonso is a tremendous football player."

  1. Even with McCoy in the backfield, does Rex really believe the Bills can win with the likes of Matt Cassel and EJ Manuel under center?

"Yeah, or Tyrod Taylor," Ryan said. "We're gonna find out. I think I feel better about those three than maybe others do. In an ideal situation, of course not. You'd love to have that guy that you know is going to be the guy and hopefully he is your guy for the next 10 years. We'll see what happens, we'll let them compete and hopefully next year we'll be able to say that."

  1. Ryan made it clear the Bills might look a whole lot like his 2009 Jets squad that amassed a 59:41 run-to-pass ratio, saying: "We definitely would love to have that kind of model and also the ability to be a little more effective outside throwing the football. We do have a lot of skill position players, but we are probably not as good as that '09 offensive line. No probably about it, we are not as good as that line. We still have a lot of work to do in those areas."
  1. Rex was never a fit with the painfully deliberate John Idzik, the former Jets general manager who failed to land a premier cornerback last offseason, leaving Ryan's defense short-handed from the start.

"As the injuries mounted it obviously got worse and worse," Ryan said. "As a coach you gotta figure a way to get it done. It wasn't ideal for us obviously but I will say this, the guys that went out there gave it everything they had and I am proud of their efforts. There is no question about that. Did we have to change our defense? Yeah. ... We weren't going to sit there and say, 'We are going to play man coverage every snap and get annihilated out there,' so we were competing every day and trying to get people stopped. Obviously, it wasn't to our standards, but the effort certainly was."

The latest Around The NFL Podcast breaks down Adrian Peterson's return and discusses the Cleveland Browns' new uniforms. Find more Around The NFL content on NFL NOW.

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