Seahawks punter Jon Ryan says Patriots heckler called him fat
Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll said he understood the taunts coming from Patriots fans last Sunday night that thanked him for calling a fateful pass play rather than a handoff to Marshawn Lynch at the goal line in Seattle’s Super Bowl XLIX. Seahawks punter Jon Ryan also had to deal with a heckler in New England, but he told “Danny, Dave and Moore” that he was a little confused about why he was being heckled.
“This one guy just kept on yelling about how fat I was,” Ryan said Wednesday. “Like, ‘Ryan, I know what your favorite holiday is: Thanksgiving. Yum, yum, yum.’ I’m like, dude, what are you talking about?”
Calling Ryan fat is perplexing considering he is one of the NFL’s most physically fit punters. Ryan joked that he was “heartbroken” by the insults and that he’s “been drinking Slim Fast ever since.” He also explained how he mentally copes with the insults – throwing in a few jabs of his own.
“Ninety-nine percent of it is funny,” he said. “You just kind of laugh and you just feel bad for them. The fans kind of sit in the front row and they’re paying like $500, $600, $700 dollars for these seats and then they don’t even watch the game. They just yell at the other team. Then they go to their dead-end job the next day. They go home to their wife (who) cooked a terrible dinner and their crappy little kids and that’s how they live. That’s what I tell myself when they’re telling at me that I’m fat. I’m like, well, you yell at me because the rest of your life is awful.”
Ryan, a famously comedic Twitter follow, dumped his social media accounts in June after the shooting in Orlando, following a testy interaction with a fan on Instagram about homosexuality. When asked what he misses about Twitter, the 34-year-old responded: “Nothing. Absolutely nothing. I thought when I did go off there, initially I thought maybe I’ll go back in a couple months or whatever. It’s been, I forget, June I think I quit that, and I haven’t been on there or the Instagram and I haven’t missed it for one second.
“It got to the point where you’d read stuff and you almost felt dirty after,” he added. “You hear the things people say and how awful it is, and you’re like, why am I even reading this? I feel just kind of dirty just even reading some of these awful things people write about each other.”
Ryan, a Mariners season-ticket holder, said he also doesn’t heckle in person.
“I think I know what it’s like on the other side so I don’t bother,” he said. “I’ve had season tickets for going on nine years now, so there have been some times at the start of those 100-loss seasons that I wanted to yell at – Dustin Ackley.”
Other highlights from the conversation:
How beating the Patriots felt: “You say it’s just another game and everything, but this one had a little something extra behind it. It felt pretty good. It was a weird thing going into a game for us and no one giving us a shot to win. That’s kind of unusual for what we’ve done the last four years but not too many people gave us a chance to win that game and we came out.”
What it means to win on the road: “There’s something about going into someone else’s house. You almost feel like you’re stealing from them. Especially those fans in New England. They weren’t the kindest fans. They were screaming at individual guys all game, which I always think is funny but you always like to kind of look over them after the game and be like, you know, ‘Now what?’”
On his critical fourth-quarter punt against Buffalo: “In that situation, there are so few times when a punter gets to have his moment. Kicker gets to kick the game-winning field goal, receivers do their (thing), everyone has their thing they feel like, not necessarily the hero, but to really contribute to that game. In that situation for a punter, that’s kind of your dream, to be backed up with two minutes left. You’re punting away to their last possession and to be able to have a big kick to help out your team it kind of feels good.”
Crediting the kick coverage team: “Guys you didn’t even hear of before the season – Neiko Thorpe, Dewey McDonald – these guys have become huge contributors on our special teams, and I don’t even think they were in training camp with us the whole time. So it’s been pretty cool.”