OXNARD, Calif. - It was an innocuous question about defensive line depth last summer that prompted Rob Ryan to blast the Philadelphia Eagles as the "all-hype team," promising that the Cowboys would "beat their ass."
This year, Ryan has vowed to hold his tongue. Asked simply how much better the Cowboys defense would be in 2012, he explained that he couldn't totally express his true feelings.
"I guess we're going to have to wait and see," Ryan said. "Day 1, I'm not calling anybody out. I've learned this is a bigger media than some of the other spots I've been, so I'm going to keep my mouth shut and work."
A great quote, Ryan made a lot of headlines during his first year in Dallas, but his defense faltered down the stretch and struggled to close out games. The club made significant upgrades to the secondary this offseason, and has added talent to every position group, which Ryan believes will create competition.
Beyond that, he's trying not to say too much, though he's clearly still very confident.
"I'm not running scared," Ryan said. "I'm not scared of anybody. I'm ready. That's why I came to Dallas. I may not have known it was going to be this much scrutiny in the media, but believe me, I wanted to be here with the Cowboys, America's Team. It's about time America likes a Ryan."