Rex Ryan explains his tattoo. Also says he knows he must do better.

January 8, 2013

(Seth Wenig / AP)

After nine days of media silence and a relaxing Bahamian getaway, Rex Ryan finally addressed his team’s failed season, his hopes and plans for 2013 and that tattoo that got so much attention.

Ryan admitted that he is concerned about his future, with the offense playing so poorly.

“I have failed in that area,” Ryan said. “For whatever reason, it’s hard to see that, but I think it’s clear that’s where I’ve come up short.”

There is a small measure of security: Owner Woody Johnson will hire a new general manager and that person will have to keep Ryan, who has two years left on his contract, for at least one season.

Which brings us to the tattoo, the one of his wife, Michelle, wearing nothing but a Mark Sanchez jersey. As he did when he addressed certain videos about the human foot two years ago, Ryan managed to make the moment touching.

“There’s a question – is that a real tattoo or not?” he said. “I’ll keep you guessing. It is funny. It is a tattoo I’ve had going on three years now. I know what you’re thinking, ‘Obviously, if Sanchez doesn’t play well, that number is changing.’

“That’s pretty much a given. But, no, I’ve been married 25 years and through my eyes, my wife’s the most beautiful woman in the world. So that’s what it is.”

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After spending most of her career in traditional print sports journalism, Cindy began blogging and tweeting, first as NFL/Redskins editor, and, since August 2010, at The Early Lead. She also is the social media editor for Sports.
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Cindy Boren | January 8, 2013