If 2014 St. Louis Rams rookie defensive tackle Aaron Donald was named to his first Pro Bowl, which apparently did not sit well with then New York Jets head coach Rex Ryan.
Donald, who was also named the NFC Defensive Rookie of the Year that season, was named to the Pro Bowl over Jets defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson, who Ryan felt had a Pro Bowl caliber season.
When asked about it Ryan said that Donald could not hold Richardson’s jock strap, a statement that Ryan now regrets ahead of the Buffalo Bills, the team he is now coaching, and Los Angeles Rams Week 5 matchup.
According to Myles Simmons of therams.com, Ryan recently said retracted that 2014 statement calling Donald a great player:
“Mark that down as one of the dumbest ones — and I’ve had a couple of them, maybe one or two dumb ones, that one right there is right at the top,” Ryan continued. “But, obviously, he’s a great player.”
Ryan went on to compare Donald to a Hall of Famer John Randle:
“He really is a fun player to watch and I love his effort,” Ryan said. “I guess the nearest thing to him is John Randle that I can remember — a guy with just explosiveness and power. Really a rare guy.”
When asked about it, Donald jokingly said he remembers what Ryan said:
“Yeah, I remember them. I remember when I heard about it. And I didn’t forget about what he said,” Donald said Wednesday. “But, it is what it is. It ain’t no big deal to me. But I remember. I remember what he said. What did he say again?”
Donald is having another great season as he was recently named NFC Defensive Player of the Week after the Rams defeated the Arizona Cardinals 17-13 on the road.
In the victory Donald collected 1.5 sacks, two passes defended and a forced fumble. Overall on the season he has 11 tackles and 1.5 sacks.
While Ryan obviously regrets the statements he made about Donald, he will have to deal with the consequences of facing Donald, who will be a little extra fired up this Sunday to face Ryan and the 1-3 Bills at the Coliseum.