Jan 122013
 

Rob Ryan is a defensive genius.

If you don’t believe me, just ask him:

“I inherited a team that was 31st in the league in defense and made them better,” Ryan told ESPNDallas.com’s Tim MacMahon. “I (expletive) made them a hell of a lot better. I’ll be out of work for like five minutes.”

Ryan, true to his genetic predisposition, was always one to over-promise and under-deliver. You never met a member of the Buddy Ryan clan that was reluctant to give you his resume with plenty of chest-thumping and dog-cussing for detractors. 

Rob "The Dude" Ryan

Rob “The Dude” Ryan

But what are the facts?

In 2012, many, myself included, were willing to give Ryan a pass. He was working short-handed much of the year. But his defense finished 19th in the league. They were 17th against the run and 21st against the pass. That inability to defend the pass thing came despite owner Jerry Jones signing cornerback Brandon Carr to a $50 million contract and moving up in the draft to take Maurice Claiborne.

In 2011, Ryan’s first season in Dallas, the defense was ranked 14th in the league.

Both seasons ended with the Cowboys losing to a division opponent in a winner-take-the-division game. Both times, the defense failed to stop the opponent with any regularity.

As a defensive coordinator, Ryan’s teams have posted an abysmal 46-98 record.

Monte Kiffin is defensive legend.

If you don’t believe me, ask anybody in Tampa Bay:

Monte Kiffin is a legend among Tampa Bay Buccaneers fans. He came to Tampa as Tony Dungy’s defensive coordinator in 1996, and spent the following thirteen seasons with the Bucs, crafting one of the best defenses to ever grace the NFL. Dungy is often recognized as the originator of Tampa 2 defense, but Monte Kiffin was a crucial part of that development. When Dungy left, he produced one of the best single-season defenses in NFL history, which led to the Bucs’ only Super Bowl championship so far.

Or, ask anybody, for that matter:

Monte Kiffin is heading back to the NFL as ESPN’s Ed Werder reports the legendary defensive coach reached an agreement on Friday to become the defensive coordinator of the Dallas Cowboys.

Cowboys hire Monte Kiffin

Defense is king

Notice the word “legendary?”

You associate names like Warren Sapp and Derrick Brooks with Kiffin.

In 13 seasons at Tampa Bay, Kiffin’s defenses finished in the top ten 11 times. In 2002, his defense led the way to the only Super Bowl win in franchise history.

From Rob Ryan to Monte Kiffin is like going…