Jets prepare to face defense of Rex Ryan protege Mike Pettine

Mike Pettine served as defensive coordinator under Rex Ryan up until this season. Credit: Getty Images
Mike Pettine served as defensive coordinator under Rex Ryan up until this season.
Credit: Getty Images

For one game at least, the mentor to Bills defensive coordinator Mike Pettine hopes to be his tormentor.

When the Jets hired Rex Ryan to be their head coach five years ago, Pettine was one of two assistants who left the Ravens to join Ryan with his new team. After rising from being a coaching assistant to outside linebackers coach during seven years in Baltimore, Pettine became the Jets defensive coordinator and Ryan’s right hand man. But Pettine left the Jets this past January after four seasons with the team for the same position in Buffalo.

“I’d be a liar if I stood here and said this game didn’t mean more to me or I didn’t want to win it. Coaches in the NFL were born with a competitive gene, a hyper-competitive gene, and you want to win at everything,” Pettine said. “When I went on vacation with Rex and we were throwing washers on the beach, I wanted to beat him just as bad as I want to beat him on Sunday. It comes down to it’s a team thing and I can’t get drawn in to the emotion of that. I have a job to do to put my players in the best position to be successful and that’s what we’re going to do. I think it makes for a good story and it’s like going against your brother. As I’ve referred to it before, [it is] brothers who fight a lot.”

Over the past four seasons, the Jets were among the best units in the league. The same can’t be said of the Bills.

A season ago, the Bills conceded 362.9 yards per game — No. 22 in the league. They also gave up the seventh-most points in the league.

The turnaround hasn’t been dramatic but the unit is playing faster, stronger and limiting major mistakes. Those characteristics were the hallmark of Ryan’s defenses in Baltimore and now in New York.

“We want to be an attacking defense and we want to cause turnovers obviously,” Bills head coach Doug Marrone said. “Right now we have a good mix of what’s going on. I think we’re getting a lot of good play out of some players that we really didn’t know we’d have to count on coming in here.”

In theory, Pettine should be able to give strong insight on a Jets offense he faced every day in practice. But Marty Mornhinweg’s West Coast offense was implemented this offseason, meaning Pettine doesn’t have the inside scoop on it.

As much as the Bills’ 3-4 alignment looks like the Jets defense and attacks like the Jets defense, it isn’t a mirror image. Much like how Ryan, who had offseason lap band surgery, doesn’t look much like the husky Pettine.

Just ask him.

“Obviously, I’ll look better than Pettine in physical appearance,” Ryan said with a smirk. “In fact, I might weigh less than him now. Just throwing it out there.”

On Sunday against an opponent they know all too well, the Jets hope that the scale will tip in their favor.

Follow Jets beat writer Kristian Dyer on Twitter @KristianRDyer.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

National Guard to withdraw from riot-torn Ferguson, Missouri

By Carey Gillam and Scott MaloneFERGUSON Mo. (Reuters) - The governor of Missouri ordered the withdrawal on Thursday of National Guard troops from riot-torn Ferguson,…

National

Sprint and T-Mobile offer further price discounts

Sprint unveiled a plan on Thursday that gives subscribers access to unlimited data for $60 a month, the industry's cheapest unlimited data offering.

National

Hundreds pay it forward at Florida Starbucks in…

The spontaneous chain of kindness continued for about 11 hours, totaling 457 transactions by the time it ended.

National

Weather system east of Caribbean could turn into…

An area of low pressure located east of the Caribbean Sea has a 50 percent chance of becoming a tropical depression or storm in the next 48 hours, U.S. forecasters…

Movies

Review: 'When the Game Stands Tall' is both…

The high school football saga "When the Game Stands Tall" fumbles around for a focus while Jim Caviezel offers the most low-key coach in history.

Movies

Girlfriend in a coma: Chloe Grace Moretz

Chloe Grace Moretz is the best cheerleader "If I Stay" could ask for. As the star of the film adaptation of the successful YA novel…

The Word

The Word: Summer lovin' for Zac Efron and…

Ah, the summer romance. So intense, so fleeting. With Labor Day fast approaching, it should come as little surprise that the incredibly surprising romance between…

The Word

The Word: The Zac Efron-Michelle Rodriguez summer fling…

  Ah, the summer romance. So intense, so fleeting. With Labor Day fast approaching, it should come as little surprise that the incredibly surprising romance…

NFL

Fantasy football draft guide: How to draft your…

Many are wondering if we’re entering a new age in fantasy football drafting — one where running backs take a backseat.

NFL

Jets vs. Giants: 3 Giants storylines to watch

The Giants have plenty to work on as they reach the dress rehearsal preseason game Friday night against the rival Jets.

NFL

Jets vs. Giants: 3 Jets storylines to watch

Metro looks at three Jets storylines to watch as they play the Giants Friday.

NFL

Giants expected to work Corey Washington into first-team…

The day of reckoning for the Giants' fringe players will fall upon them Friday night against the Jets.

Sex

Big weddings may lead to long-term happiness

Dreaming of a big wedding? A new study indicates that the longer your guest list, the happier you’ll be in the long run. l A…

Sex

Online dating for every generation

Frank Jackson and his mother Maggie are like lots of modern families: They have dinner together regularly, keep each other updated on their lives —…

Wellbeing

Going green could be the key to getting…

If we could just pursue the things that would actually make us happy, we could help the environment too, according to a New York researcher.…

Tech

Siren: A new dating app that puts women…

Online dating can be brutal, especially for single women. Noting that many women hate wading through inappropriate messages and photos, two tech entrepreneurs decided to…