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Buffalo Bills hire Rex Ryan as head coach

Mon, Jan 12th 2015 11:10 am
Buffalo Bills
Buffalo Bills

Following a flurry of activity over the weekend, the Buffalo Bills officially named Rex Ryan as the team's 18th head coach Monday. He replaces Doug Marrone, who opted out of his contract on New Year's Eve.

In a statement to the media, Bills owner Terry Pegula said, "Following an extensive search, we are pleased today to announce that Rex Ryan is our new head coach. Rex brings a wealth of experience and enthusiasm to the position that we feel will be a tremendous benefit to our players and the entire Bills organization. He was very impressive during the interview process, as were many of the candidates to which we spoke, and we feel Rex is the best fit for our team. We look forward to his leadership and expertise in directing our team to the playoffs and bringing a championship to Buffalo for our fans."

Ryan's contract is reportedly for five years at $5.5 million per year.

He spent the previous six seasons as head coach of the New York Jets. Ryan led the team to the AFC Championship Game in his first two seasons as head coach. His past two seasons were not as successful as the Jets, like the Bills, struggled to find the right quarterback. Ryan went 50-52 with the Jets (4-2 in the playoffs).

The Bills finished 9-7, tying the team's best record in a decade.

As of now, it's unclear if defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz will return to the team. The Bills are expected to hire San Francisco 49ers offensive coordinator Greg Roman to the same position.

Ryan, 52, is the son of legendary NFL coach Buddy Ryan.

The Bills interviewed a dozen coaching candidates, including former quarterback Frank Reich.

UPDATE: Late Monday, ESPN reported Schwartz will not be back next season.

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