Former Jets, Bills Head Coach Rex Ryan a Contestant on CBS’ ‘The Amazing Race’

by Patrick Norton

Rex Ryan – known for surviving the NFL coaching carousel for eight years – is jumping to a new challenge. The six-year head honcho with the New York Jets is joining the cast of contestants for the upcoming season of CBS’ The Amazing Race.

Ryan, 59, joins Tim Mann, a golfing partner of the coach’s, in the gauntlet. The show follows a trek for 12 teams embarking on a journey throughout the world. Contestants compete in challenges at various locations to identify subsequent checkpoints. However, the first team to reach the final destination wins a $1 million prize.

The show’s official social account released a teaser for the 34th season premiering on Sept. 21. Ryan stands next to his partner with a giant grin stretched ear-to-ear.

While previewing the program, Ryan spoke on his relationship with his new competitive partner. The coach said, “Where our story kind of started, was his love for the Buffalo Bills and the fact that I failed miserably as the head coach of the Buffalo Bills.”

The former coach currently works for ESPN, providing football analysis on various programs. However, Ryan is a mainstay on the network’s NFL Sunday Countdown pregame show. Often critiqued for obscure viewpoints and opinions, the coach gets by on his charisma and charm.

The son of the late defensive coordinator of the 1985 Chicago Bears, Buddy Ryan, Rex and his brother, Rob, possess a thorough background in competition. The football family lost the patriarch in 2016, but the sporty edge persists.

Former Colleague Reacts to Rex Ryan’s New Gig

Before becoming head coach of the New York Jets in 2009, Ryan operated as defensive coordinator of the Baltimore Ravens. While Ryan felt like he had the inside track for the head coaching gig in Baltimore upon Brian Billick’s departure, the team signed John Harbaugh from the Philadelphia Eagles.

Ryan and Harbaugh overlapped for one season in Baltimore before Ryan left for the Jets, but the two shared a good bond. When asked about Ryan’s role in the upcoming season of The Amazing Race, Harbaugh has quite the response.

The show requires attention to detail and a proper directional sense. However, Harbaugh is calling his shot, saying Ryan could “get lost right out of the gates.”