EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - DECEMBER 22: Head coach Rex Ryan of the New York Jets and quarterback Geno Smith #7 of the New York Jets walk off together at the end of the game against the Cleveland Browns at MetLife Stadium on December 22, 2013 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.
(Photo by Ron Antonelli/Getty Images)

Rex Ryan and Geno Smith spent two years with each other on the New York Jets, but it doesn’t really seem like they get along.

The years 2013-14 were a pretty dark pair of seasons for the New York Jets. Combining for a record of 12-20, the organization was going in the opposite direction from their 2009 and 2010 campaigns in which they reached the AFC Championship.

Regarding the lingering struggles, many pointed fingers at Rex Ryan, the team’s outspoken and struggling head coach, and Geno Smith, the young quarterback who couldn’t seem to accustom to the speed of the NFL. The former was gone after 2014 while the latter was off the team after 2016.

And years later, neither are looking back and laughing at how things turned out, nor are putting the past in, well, the past. Instead, Ryan and Smith have a whole lot to say about one another, and not in a positive way.

“Give him Geno Smith…and let’s see how many Super Bowls he would’ve won…these two needed each other to be historic,” Ryan said on ESPN’s First Take when refuting the argument that Bill Belichick could’ve won titles without Tom Brady.

Obviously, Smith heard this and clapped back at the former head coach in a series of tweets.

Ryan and the Jets selected Smith in the second round (No. 39 overall) of the 2013 NFL Draft out of West Virginia. He was the second quarterback taken in the entire draft. The Buffalo Bills selected EJ Manuel with the No. 16 overall pick.

Whether you thought Geno was the answer or not at the quarterback position, reality eventually brought him to the bench. Smith played in 30 games (29 starts) his first two years, throwing 25 touchdowns to 34 picks with a 57.5% completion rate.

He then only played in three games with one start in his final two seasons with the Jets. The numbers simply didn’t do him any justice and neither did a 2015 locker room altercation with former Jet IK Enemkpali, in which the defensive end punched Smith over money the quarterback allegedly owed him.

The Jets waived Enemkpali afterward, and one day later, the Bills claimed him off waivers. Who was Buffalo’s head coach? That’s right, Mr. Rex Ryan.


Ryan Honey is a staff writer and host of the Wide Right Podcast.