I knew this story was going to get fun.
Yesterday, Mike Pettine, the current Browns head coach, said in a piece written by Greg Bedard of MMQB that at one point in time the Patriots had possession of a few Jets defensive playbooks. He said Tom Brady was bragging about it at Wes Welker’s wedding a few years ago. Pettine added that he wasn’t surprised, even going as far as saying that “Rex would give them out like candy anyway”.
This did not make Rex Ryan very happy, or Bill Belichick for that matter (then again, when is Bill happy?).
When asked about it, Ryan actually supported Belichick’s Patriots, and grew angrier and angrier at Pettine: (Ryan’s quotes via Kimberley A. Martin of Newsday)
“No. 1, I think it’s disrespectful to New England to sit back and say that they did this,” the Jets coach said, his irritation growing with every question. “‘Cause I can tell you, every single game that we’ve ever had with New England has been decided on the field. Nobody’s had a competitive advantage. And that’s a fact. So all that type of stuff, is ridiculous.”
When Belichick was asked about it, his answer was much shorter, but it had the same ring to it. Belichick simply said, “go talk to Mike Pettine, I don’t know”.
Ryan later went on to say playbooks change, and that this is a game-plan league, as every single game is different for every single team.
“Every single game’s different. So when you go into my room … you’ll see every one of those playbooks. And if you flip [through] them, they’re a lot different each week. And it’s always gameplan-specific. So, to me, it’s ridiculous.
“But it sounds like everybody needs to talk to Pettine because apparently he’s got all the information.”
One thing I will say about this, is it really doesn’t matter if Ryan gave out the Jets playbook. You can find these all over the internet if you wanted. Obtaining a playbook does not guarantee you a victory. It all comes down to watching film, studying the opponent, and ultimately executing when it matters.
So this isn’t another ‘cheating’ scandal, but rather an amusing rift between Ryan, and his former defensive coordinator, Mike Pettine.