Rex Ryan: Kathryn Smith 'all about the team'

The Buffalo Bills didn't make the playoffs, but that doesn't mean they haven't stayed out of the news.

During a Friday news conference, Ryan addressed numerous offseason developments with his team, including Kathryn Smith's historic hire. Smith was named Bills quality control-special teams coach Wednesday, making her the first full-time female assistant coach in NFL history.

"I hired Kathryn because I know she'll do a tremendous job," Ryan told the Buffalo media. "She's all about the team and how she can help.

"I recognize the significance of the hire, but it was all about getting someone good in that role."

As Ryan did with his new hire, Smith spoke highly of her coach on the airwaves Thursday while addressing her new position.

"I was surprised, yes," Smith told WGR in Buffalo in regards to her promotion, "but also, no, in the sense that Rex is open-minded. Rex and I have worked together for a number of years so I know him pretty well. We have a good working relationship and he's very loyal to people who work with him and people who he values what they do."

Smith served as an administrative assistant under Ryan this past season. She held the same role with Ryan in his final season as Jets coach in 2014. She also worked as a player personnel assistant with the Jets for seven years.

Here are some other tidbits from Rex's Friday presser:

»Ryan addressed his hiring of two notable defensive assistants for the first time. Rex was effusive in his praise for new assistant defensive backs coach Ed Reed, who played under him in Baltimore: "I hired Ed Reed because he knows my system inside and out, and he'll take our players' prep to the next level."

»Rex also clarified the structure of his defensive staff following the Bills' hiring of his brother Rob. Rex confirmed that he will still call the plays, Dennis Thurman will remain the Bills' defensive coordinator and the addition of his brother "simply adds to our coaching stable." Regarding his brother's presence on the team: "I really think it's going to be a great thing to have (Rob) in the building."

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