Jets coach Rex Ryan just concluded a fairly revealing interview with WFAN's Mike Francesa a few minutes ago, and Ryan was asked about the AFC Championship game.
Of course, Ryan was the Ravens' defensive coordinator before becoming head coach of the Jets. Current Ravens defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano was Ryan's secondary coach.
Here are Ryan's comments:
Ryan: “This is what I believe will happen. First off, the Ravens are going to win this game. The only way you beat New England...
Francesa: "You think they’re going to win?"
Ryan: “Everybody here, I can tell you this, there isn’t one Giants fan that wants me to say the Giants are going to win this game.
Francesa: "Give me the truth."
Ryan: "But the truth is this. The only way you’re going to beat New England is if you have a great defense. And when you look at the teams that won – obviously Buffalo was the one exception – in three years I’m talking about, the Giants had a great game defensively, they were able to get pressure on the quarterback, make plays in the back end. The Ravens had beaten New England before with a dominant defense. We beat New England three times but we did it creatively … a different type of defense, [Tom Brady] wasn’t comfortable. There are only a few teams … Pittsburgh, was more physical than New England. That’s why they won. So the Ravens, in my opinion, are going to take a similar approach to how the Giants played them. Meaning, they’re going to rush four guys on them, I truly think they’re going to rush four. I think Terrell Suggs might be the difference in this game. I don’t know how many guys can block Terrell Suggs. I’ve got the answer: none of them. So I think Suggs is going to be huge but they’ve got to be physical. And the Ravens’ offense does have to show up. They have to protect the football."
Francesa: "Will they be able to run on the Patriots?"
Ryan: "I think they can move the ball on the Pats, I don’t think there’s any doubt. I think they can move. And, let’s face it, I’m cheering for the Ravens."
Francesa: "So you think the Ravens have a good chance in this game?"
Ryan: "I think they do."