Brotherly Love

Yes, I am a product of the sixties when the world was turned upside down. There is a famous Kingston Trio ballad from that era “Where Have All the Flowers Gone” which includes the memorable line “Oh, when will they ever learn?” Blessed with a brother, I have some understanding of the innate affection, concern, and desire to ensure that my sibling is doing well, especially should the circumstances of his life turn downward. Correspondingly, the feelings shared by fraternal twins must be even stronger. That said, there’s just got be a limit between outright nepotism and the bounds of appropriate business behavior. When will pro football coaches ever learn that hiring family is not necessarily a good idea?

            The hiring by Rex Ryan, whose “not-as-big-as-it was” posterior is beginning to sizzle in Buffalo, of his fraternal twin, Rob, as assistant head/defense coach, defies all good football, business sense. Sure Rex felt bad for Rob, who was down on his luck. The barbershop refugee must have been treated unfairly and not given a chance as defensive coordinator at the Oakland Raiders, Cleveland Browns, Dallas Cowboys, St. Louis Rams (almost), and New Orleans Saints. Just by looking at Rob, it is instantly clear that he obviously marches to the beat of his own drum, which is not necessarily a bad thing in itself. On the other hand, I believe it is reasonable to ask how someone who cares so little about his own personal appearance can at the same time still be precocious in scheming against opposing NFL offenses. In today’s NFL emotion only goes so far.

            In situations like this I am always reminded about the guy that has several traffic accidents every year, but none are ever his fault. Hmm? Rex has a long and thoroughly proven record of under achievement. It is one thing for a Mike Shanahan to arrange for his son, Kyle, to catch on as an assistant with an NFL staff and then earn his way up through the ranks. Rex’s swaddling of Rob, however, who has bombed out in dramatic fashion all over the league, makes little football sense. Perhaps, Rex sees his stay on Lake Erie as almost over. At least this way Robby can cash a few more checks.

            So what do I know? After the Bills shut out the Patriots at their home last week I picked them up on my fantasy football league team. As I said there is just something about the way two close brothers can work together…….

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