Does Rex Ryan's tattoo send a message?

January, 4, 2013
1/04/13
11:08
AM ET
Even in the Bahamas, embattled head coach Rex Ryan cannot escape controversy with the New York Jets.

The latest zany development is Ryan being photographed yesterday on vacation with a tattoo on his right arm of a woman (presumably his wife, according to reports) wearing a No. 6 Mark Sanchez jersey.

You cannot make this stuff up, folks. You can check out the New York Daily News' picture here.

Regardless of whether this tattoo is permanent, it sends a strange message. We all know of Ryan's staunch loyalty to Sanchez. Ryan has refused to bench the quarterback for most of the past two seasons even though Sanchez has led the NFL in turnovers during that span. In an unconventional way, it's clear Ryan remains in Sanchez's corner despite the worst season of the quarterback's career.

Sanchez will definitely be on the roster next season. He is due a guaranteed salary of $8.25 million that makes him virtually untradeable. It certainly doesn't appear Ryan wants to get rid of Sanchez anytime soon.

But here is the big question: What do the Jets think of this?

Permanent or not, Ryan is probably the only NFL head coach with his quarterback's jersey inked on his arm. It's just not a good look for a person in charge of running the team and brings more unwanted headlines to the Jets, a team already viewed as a national circus.

Chalk this up as another poor decision by Ryan.

James Walker | email

ESPN Miami Dolphins reporter

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