Written by Payton Dillinger
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Topics: NFL, Rex Ryan

Friday, 14 August 2015

It appears that there is more to the story of IK Enemkpali breaking Geno Smith's jaw than we were first led to believe. Sources originally reported that the linebacker had "sucker-punched" Smith over $600 that the Jet's quarterback had owed him. The $600 in question came from Enemkpali buying Smith an airline ticket to visit the linebacker's football camp in Pfugerville, Texas on July 11. Yet, the quarterback never attended his teammate's football camp, as he was instead busy attending the funeral of someone close to him who had passed away in a motorcycle accident only days before Enemkpali's camp began.

However, new evidence has arisen that Rex Ryan may have actually prompted the linebacker to break Smith's jaw. Enemkpali was originally drafted in the sixth-round by Ryan the previous year when the coach was still with the Jets, and it appears that the two had still kept in minor contact with one another since, even though they were now on rival teams within the same division - both of which had hopes of finally breaking into the playoffs.

In a series of text messages, Enemkpali told his former coach that he was afraid that he wouldn't "make the cut" entering into the season, to which Ryan replied "I have a solution for us both". With the linebacker being a fringe player to make the Jet's roster on opening day, Ryan convinced Enemkpali to injure Geno Smith. Doing so would then seriously hinder the Jets' chance of making the playoffs, and therefore increase the Bills' own chances of getting in. Knowing full well that a fringe player such as Enemkpali would be cut for injuring his quarterback outside of practice, the former Jets coach offered to pick up Enemkpali off of waiver wires in exchange for him significantly hurting Smith. The linebacker would then be expected to bolster a linebacking core that is seen as rather weak when it came to depth.

Then, only days after their exchange, Enemkpali went on to injure Smith in the locker room after practice, using the $600 squabble as an excuse. As expected, the linebacker was cut just hours later, and Ryan picked up his former player off of the waiver wires shortly thereafter.

We have sent out messages to both Ryan's and Enemkpali's camps, as well as to both teams and to the league office for comment. While neither player nor coach have replied, the teams, as well as the NFL league office, stated that they were still in the process of gathering the facts, and that they would have no further comment.

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