Originally posted on isportsweb.com  |  Last updated 1/31/14
The New Orleans Saints have always had a special connection to that place nestled up above the clouds. Whether it’s having the “Pope” at their games, a team name that refers to the holiest of people, a quarterback named Breesus or the newest addition of Moses, AKA Rob Ryan, to the team. With his flowing white locks, Ryan came to hand down the law of defense to New Orleans. He was no longer wanted by his family in Dallas, so he floated along the Gulf of Mexico and landed in NOLA where the Saints took him in. Okay, maybe Rob Ryan isn’t as reserved as Moses, with his off the wall comments, party mentality and his tradition of meeting Saints fans at New Orleans dive Ms. Mae’s for drinks after home game wins, but Ryan has been a savior nonetheless. After the catastrophe of Gregg Williams’ bounty scandal and Steve Spagnuolos’ less-than-visible imprint on the Saints defense, it was time for a dramatic change. I can imagine Ryan was upset when he got fired from his job as defensive coordinator in Dallas after only being there for a year. But in a statement in a press conference right after the hire in New Orleans, Ryan claimed he was excited and thrilled to be working with the New Orleans Saints organization. As soon as he got into The Big Easy he started looking forward, instead of looking back, which is the first mistake some coaches make. He was ready to give 100% to this struggling team, especially in the defensive department. Why wasn’t Ryan as successful in his previous DC jobs as he is in New Orleans? I believe each coach has a perfect fit with one specific team. It’s like finding your soul mate. They work well with other coaches on the staff, they get along well with the owner and they get respect and dedication from their players. Oh, and they are loved by the fans. So far, this has been the case for Ryan. He has impacted each player in his own way. I’ve seen changes in Akiem Hicks, John Jenkins, Cameron Jordan and Glenn Foster to name a few. Their confidence in themselves as players and as a fit for the 3-4 defense was showcased this season. Rob Ryan changed the Saints to a 3-4 defense after using it in Dallas. Could this be the return of The Dome Patrol in future years? This was just what the Saints needed. The personnel on this team is just right for a 3-4. It also highlights young pass rushers such as Junior Galette and Martez Wilson. Having multiple safeties are important in a 3-4 and this is why choices like drafting Kenny Vaccaro in the third round were made. Young players like these are one of the reasons Ryan came in at the right time. He can start fresh and mold these players into what the team needs them to be. For the Saints, adding Ryan to their coaching roster was a wise investment. Follow isportsweb on twitter Just like Sean Payton, Ryan is a mastermind when it comes to creating plays. It showed this year when the defense went from the team to set the NFL record for most yards allowed in a single season, to the number four defense in the league. Next season has a lot in store for the defense. I do believe that if the offense could have come together a bit more in the end and played like the first half of the season, the Saints would have gone further. I am counting down the days until we can see what Rob Ryan is cooking up with the defense this training camp. It is great to see how much Rob Ryan has embraced his role with the Saints. The city has surely welcomed him with open arms and he has become their new favorite Who Dat mascot, Rob Moses Ryan.
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