SBJ/Jan. 30-Feb. 5, 2017/Media

Rex Ryan: Headset to studio set

Rex ‘Raring to go’ on Super Bowl Sunday, ESPN executive says

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When the Buffalo Bills fired Rex Ryan in December, four sports TV networks (CBS, ESPN, Fox and NFL Network) reached out almost immediately to persuade the former coach to take his act to television.

Ryan opted for ESPN, signing a deal to appear on “NFL Sunday Countdown” from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. ET on Super Bowl Sunday.

Will ESPN’s one-day deal with former Bills coach Rex Ryan lead to a long-term arrangement?
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ESPN says the deal only covers Super Bowl Sunday, but it clearly makes ESPN a front-runner to sign Ryan to a longer deal if he’s unable to find a coaching job he likes.

“Rex is a great personality and has a unique perspective,” said Seth Markman, ESPN senior coordinating producer. “He knows the Patriots really well. He’s raring to go.”

In the buttoned-up world of NFL coaches, Ryan is considered extreme — a big personality whose news conferences were the most entertaining in the league.

Ryan becomes the latest former Jets coach to be hired by ESPN, following Herm Edwards, Eric Mangini, Bill Parcells and Al Groh. Ryan is represented by CAA Sports; Nick Khan and Jimmy Sexton handled his negotiations.

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