Few NFL figures have been more outspoken about Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots over the years than Rex Ryan.
The former New York Jets and Buffalo Bills head coach took plenty of shots at Belichick during his time in the league and continues to do so as a panelist on ESPN. On Sunday's “Postseason NFL Countdown," Ryan snuck in a shot at Belichick during a discussion about Tom Brady's potential retirement.
“The reason the Bucs won the Super Bowl is because of Tom Brady, they know that,” Ryan said, as transcribed by Dov Kleiman. “Some people in New England thought it was because of somebody else, they now know they were wrong.”
For context, Ryan was making a case for why Brady could be less inclined to leave Tampa Bay than he was to exit New England. Ryan believes the Bucs organization shows its appreciation for Brady more than Belichick and the Patriots did during the 20 years he was in Foxboro.
Brady may have played the bigger role in the Patriots dynasty, but he readily admits he wouldn't be the quarterback he is today without Belichick as his head coach. Belichick has shown equal respect for Brady, recently stating "nobody deserves more credit for our success here" than the ex-Patriots QB.
Brady and the Bucs hope to advance to the NFC Championship with a win over the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday. If Tampa Bay loses, all eyes will be on Brady as we await the 44-year-old's decision on his NFL future.