New York Jets coach Rex Ryan now weighs 242 pounds, which is down 106 from the 348 he weighed at the 2009 New York Jets AFC championship game. After going through lap-band surgery two years ago, Ryan has shrunk his waistline by 10 inches and now weighs less than his backup quarterback, Tim Tebow, according to USA Today.
It's been an unusual off-season for Ryan in that he's mostly remained out of the spotlight while the sports media argue over what will happen with Tebow ready to man center if current quarterback Mark Sanchez doesn't play up to standards. Ryan decided to undergo the surgery after talking with former football players Jamie Dukes and Tony Siragusa.
I've looked forward to this season probably more than any season I've had in my life, Ryan told ESPN. I have something to prove. Shoot, I'm excited about it.
Instead of eating 12 tacos at once he now says he'll share a single meal with his wife.
If I want pizza, instead of eating a whole pizza like I used to, I'll eat a slice of pizza, if even that, he said.
Ryan reports that his cholesterol is now under 150 and his current blood pressure is 120 over 75. He walks 45 minutes each day and said he has considered running again. The coach said he was shocked and mortified when he stepped on the scale around the time the Jets played the Indianapolis Colts in 2009.
Sexy Rexy's weight loss will be a huge help to him because he's sure to have a stressful season on his hands. Coming off an 8-8 season that followed two appearances in AFC championship games, Ryan was heavily criticized for pumping up his team's own tires too much.
The media barrage that's already warming up will also weigh on him. NFL fans and the media have been polarized since the Jets acquired Tebow from the Denver Broncos. The quarterback will almost certainly see a hefty dose of playing time in the 2012 season, whether it be in the wildcat or replacing Sanchez after a particularly bad outing.
Ryan wasn't letting the pressure from football get to him quite yet, though. He said the primary motivation in getting healthy was his family.
I want to see my kids grow up, and I want to see their kids grow up, he said. That was important to me.
That's if the demands that are sure to stem from the Tebow/Sanchez controversy don't kill him first.