IRVING, Texas - On Friday, Rob Ryan addressed the unsportsmanlike conduct penalty that he received in last Sunday's game against the Bengals when he was caught standing on the field and having a shouting match of sorts with Bengals' offensive lineman Andre Smith. Ryan claimed to be remorseful and embarrassed about the penalty, but then jokingly blamed his family roots.
"First of all, I don't ever want to do that, be a detriment to the team. Thank God we were great in the red zone," said Ryan, whose defense held the Bengals to a field goal despite the penalty. "That was an embarrassing moment for me. I think I'm smarter than that. But I am a Ryan. My last name is Ryan. I am an American. When someone bad mouths the Ryan name or America I tend to screw up and go at them. It's a mistake and it's something I'll learn from and I won't do it again."
With a smile on his face, Ryan clarified whether he considered Smith to be "bad mouthing" America or his family name.
"I think he was attacking the American flag," Ryan said. "We're America's Team and he was attacking America."
When asked about Ben Roethlisberger's comments that the Steelers are "The World's Team" Ryan took the high road and complimented the quarterback's abilities.
"I know Ben is one hell of a quarterback. My teams have played him a lot. He's done some great things against us and we've also had success against him at times. He's a tremendous competitor, a big huge guy. I don't know what kind of historian he is or whatever. He can put out whatever he wants, but he knows we're going to show up and get after him just like he plans to get after us."