And You Thought It Couldn’t Get Weirder Than Tripgate

Florham Park, N.J.- Who knew covering the Jets would give a writer enough gossip to add on their resume to eventually be able to write for a tabloid like TMZ or US Weekly?

It’s always something with these New York football Jets and really when you think about the types of stories breaking from the Jets headquarters, is there another team in sports that would be able to consistently turn out this types of headlines?

Of course not, okay well maybe the Mets but the let’s face it the Mets and Jets, historically, are essentially the same team they just play different sports.

A couple of weeks ago, Rex Ryan joked about his wife the model, yesterday anyone with an internet connection learned it was her feet she so loved to model. (Jetsinsider.com Photo).

The Jets continue to maintain their spot as the most talked about team in the NFL and that is certainly not about to change now, thanks to the latest bit of Jets related gossip being revealed for the world to digest.

Just when you thought it couldn’t get any weirder than the strength and conditioning coach becoming the main story line for an NFL team trying to make the playoffs, it suddenly got much weirder last night.

Yesterday a video leaked on the internet, thanks to the people of Deadspin, that appears to be of Rex Ryan’s wife Michelle showing off her, “beautiful feet” to an admirer of said feet, but the story doesn’t end there. The admirer in the video sure sounds a lot like Ryan himself.

If it isn’t Ryan than someone has been meticulously practicing Ryan’s cadence and speech patterns and should really look into a job impersonating Ryan professionally. If it is in fact Ryan, the bigger question should be who cares?

Shockingly the answer seems to be just about everybody.

This is definitely not the first time this season the Jets facilities have been swarmed by groups of non-football reporters, but it’s certainly the strangest reasoning ever for them to be there.

Whether its a story about a DUI, a female reporter being sexually harassed, an ex-quarterback sending lewd pictures to another female reporter, tripgate or now foot-fetishes the Jets always give us writers plenty of non-football related topics to discuss ad-nauseum.

But a foot-fetish, really? When did a coach of an NFL team having a foot-fetish become front page news?

Yet as crazy and insane as it sounds, it somehow makes all the sense in the world, of course that’s only when you consider that it is the Jets being talked about.

It’s getting to the point where there is literally nothing that could surprise the Jets beat writers. Anyone who has the responsibility of covering the Jets is without a doubt finding no trouble in the practice of ‘expecting the unexpected’ and oddly enough it might soon become disappointing if these types of stories don’t continue every week.

The Jets still have a football game to play on Sunday in Chicago, but you would have never known it from listening to the questions being asked. All anyone wanted to talk about was the foot-fetish, even when it became crystal clear they weren’t going to get the type of response that they wanted, they kept pushing asking the same question over and over and over again.

“Mr. Ryan did you and your wife make the foot-fetish videos?” Asked a television reporter.

After a couple of seconds of uncomfortable awkward silence Ryan, for the first time ever seemed at a loss for words, but eventually settled on saying, “Obviously I knew these questions were coming, this is a personal matter and I’m not going to discuss it.”

“Again this is a personal matter and I hope you can respect the fact that I wish not to discuss it.” Ryan said in response to the same question being asked, but this is the New York media it shouldn’t surprise anyone that they didn’t respect Ryan’s desire to not talk about it.

So when the next batch of questions came firing in at him he would answer them all exactly the same way. He wouldn’t confirm or deny that was him and his wife, he wouldn’t discuss the nature of the tapes or how they got on the internet. There was a no comment when asked about how the Jets organization has responded to the videos and even when it was pointed out that often when someone doesn’t flat out deny something it it usually leads to a presumption of guilt, Ryan still wouldn’t bite.

“I just want to keep things as a personal matter and I’m really not here to discuss it.” Ryan said.

So Ryan elected to not discuss the matter which, to the media, means he basically admitted it was him and his wife without actually admitting it. Still, what’s the big deal? There was nothing pornographic or explicit in the video, it’s not illegal in any way to admire your wife’s feet and at least it was his wife’s feet and not another women’s feet.

The whole concept of a foot-fetish sounds crazy to many people though, of all the parts of a women to choose to focus on, who focuses on the feet?

However ,what is more disturbing is the fact that so many people are interested in hearing about somebody else’s foot-fetish. It should be much more of a non-story, one would think people would run from trying to learn this type of information, but somehow people want more details?

This is the world that we live in now and we just have to except it, no matter how depressing that may be.

Ryan is a football coach, with a team playing for a chance to lock up a playoff spot on Sunday and yet all anyone wanted to talk about was his wife’s feet. Even if one was to be curious about the details of this story, what does it have to do with football?

Obviously the answer is nothing. It means absolutely, or at least next to, nothing from a football standpoint, but from the standpoint of ‘I don’t know why, but I’m oddly fascinated by the ridiculous nature of this story,’ it means oh so much.

Yes, it’s a silly harmless little sideshow, but that’s just the thing, it’s yet another sideshow. The sideshows have dominated the headlines for the Jets and have often eclipsed the fact that they are having a pretty good season on the field. As long as stories like this keep surfacing they will continue to be dissected in every possible way and the only thing that could trump this type of embarrassment from a football standpoint is a Jets Super Bowl victory.

Regardless, through all of the ridiculousness Ryan still has the support and full confidence of the Jets organization and his players.

Jets GM Mike Tannenbaum released a statement about the “controversy,” today saying, “Woody (Johnson) and I have met with Rex. This is a personal matter and he has our full support.”

Bart Scott said he wasn’t about to get into talking about or dissecting the situation, but stressed that he has Ryan’s back just like he would have any of his teammates back. “Rex is family, it’s not even coach Rex, it’s uncle Rex to me.”

Who knows what to ultimately make of this story, past stories and whatever shocking story breaks next week? The Jets may have some glaring weaknesses to address, but say what you want about this Jets team if there’s one thing you can’t accuse them of, it’s being boring.

Injury Update

Santonio Holmes apparently injured his toe in Pittsburgh last Sunday and missed practice today, but Ryan fully expects him to play. Sanchez was limited and may be limited all week, but Ryan said he is “99.9 percent sure Sanchez will play.”

Damien Woody will definitely not play, while Eric Smith and James Ihedigbo are both making progress and Ryan hopes they will both be ready for Sunday.

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