Only the Jets could turn a season-ending press conference into an all-out farce.
The team finally announced that they would be holding their long-awaited postmortem on the season next Tuesday, nine days since the end of the regular season and beyond the deadline imposed by the NFL to have some high-ranking member of the team's hierarchy to meet the media. That was already enough to get the wolves circling, but the further news that Rex Ryan is sunning himself in the Bahamas has made this a perfect tabloid storm.
As we said yesterday, we're not quite sure what the rush is to hear from people that we've already heard say way too much and do way too little but there's no question that the Jets' ability to make every situation worse makes it a juicier tale than simply keeping quiet. Honestly, though, Ryan is irrelevant at this point.
Woody Johnson is the one who Jets fans need to hear from because they know what Ryan is going to say. The coach would get emotional, crack a few one-liners and say that he believes the Jets can win because that's just what Rex Ryan does when there's a microphone in sight.
Johnson, on the other hand, is the guy who can explain what kind of plan the team has in place to improve on the dreadful 2012 season. And these are some of the questions he'll have to answer in order to convince anyone that the team isn't destined for another losing season in 2013.
Why did you fire Mike Tannenbaum? - This one should start off pretty straightforward because you can point to the draft, cap management and the team's record, but it will get sticky when Johnson tries to explain his role in the decision making process. The Tim Tebow trade, the Mark Sanchez extension and a dozen other moves need further explanation to understand how the Jets reach their decisions.
Why fire Tannenbaum and not Ryan? - Another straightforward start as Johnson will say he believes in Ryan's passion and coaching acumen, but it gets more difficult because of the fact that Ryan was seen as the football man while Tannenbaum took care of the budget. Ryan can coach, but his evaluation skills are less clear and Johnson needs to explain who is helping advise him on the football side.
Was there doubt about bringing Ryan back/doubt from Ryan about coming back? - This gets to be a process question of why the press conference was delayed so long, particularly because you'd think you'd want to get some message out there after firing your general manager. Unless, of course, the message wasn't one that portrayed the team as having a clue what they're doing.
Will the new general manager have free rein to shape the organization? - This includes the right to fire Ryan, but also the chance to radically overhaul the roster if he sees fit. Trading Darrelle Revis, swallowing the dead cap space by cutting Sanchez, installing the Wing - T ... basically anything they want or are there qualifications?
Is this all a ploy to help the Giants? - By virtue of talent, the Giants underachieved more than the Jets this year yet their failure to make the playoffs has been met with a collective shrug. Yes, they won the Super Bowl last year but it doesn't hurt to share a town with a team that finds new ways to shoot itself in the foot every week.