Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Raiders Ship Gets Lighter as Ryan Jumps Overboard

By Rick Richardson

It looks like the winds of change are blowing gale force for the Raiders once again.

Per Adam Schefter of, Rob Ryan has jumped ship and landed in the Dog Pound. Cleveland to be exact. Pending Cleveland Browns coach Eric Mangini is reportedly ready to snatch Rob Ryan away from the Raiders at the first chance. The change in address for Ryan is most likely a relief for Al Davis, saving the Raiders owner the awkwardness of terminating him.

The Raider’s defensive coordinator for the past five years; Ryan has outlasted Norv Turner, Art Shell, and Lane Kiffin despite having basement dwelling defenses four out of five years.

Ryan’s defenses ranked 27th, 22nd, 3rd, 27th, and 30th driving many Raider fans to the conclusion that his dad Buddy Ryan’s Chicago Bear defenses would be the closest he would ever come to seeing a really good defense. Despite some talent-laden defenses, none of Ryan’s defenses measured up. This includes the lone bright spot when the Raiders defense was ranked 3rd during the 2006 season.

That season should have an asterisk next to it because teams rarely had to test the Oakland defense with anything other than conservative play because the Oakland offense was so bad. One score and you were ready to run out the clock.

Offensive coordinator Gregg Knapp and running backs coach Tom Rathman have also found employment elsewhere. Coach Knapp has found a new home with Seattle and Coach Rathman has gained employment with his former employer as a player, the 49ers. Of the two, only Rathman had any kind of a future with the Raiders.


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