Rex Ryan was lost in the sea of humanity, hidden from sight as his players hopped around him like co-eds on a caffeine rush moments after Woody Johnson delivered the news that their embattled coach would return next season.

“You’d think we won the Super Bowl,” Geno Smith said.
The roar in the Jets’ post-game locker room reverberated, a distinct sound that officially ended the season-long speculation about Ryan’s future that had intensified in recent weeks.

Johnson and GM John Idzik should now give Ryan a two-year extension through 2016 to avoid a similar distraction next year. Johnson, after all, echoed Ryan’s earlier sentiments that the Jets are an ascending team.

Although neither Johnson nor Idzik believed that the 8-8 team overachieved, it’s clear that Ryan and his coaching staff squeezed every bit out of a deficient roster.

“I couldn’t be prouder of our team,” Johnson said.
Head coaches rarely enter a season as a true lame duck. Although details haven’t been hammered out yet, there’s an understanding between Ryan and the Jets that an extension hopefully will be reached. Both sides want to make it happen.

Ryan and Idzik maintained that decisions on the assistant coaches will be a collaborative effort. “Everything’s an organizational decision,” Ryan said.

The head coach, however, should be able to choose the makeup of his staff. There are about a half-dozen key assistants with expiring contracts. Most assistants are still in the dark about their futures.