EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. (KMSP) - Buddy Ryan, the mastermind of the 1985 Chicago Bears defense, died Tuesday. He was 82. His death was confirmed by the Buffalo Bills, who are coached by son Rex Ryan. James Solano, Buddy Ryan's agent, said he died in Kentucky but did not give a cause.
Tuesday morning, the Minnesota Vikings offered their condolences to the Ryan family. Buddy Ryan’s first job in the NFL was with the Vikings under Bud Grant.
“The Vikings are passing along condolences, thoughts and prayers to the family of James David ‘Buddy’ Ryan, who passed away Tuesday at the age of 82,” the team said in a statement. “Ryan coached Vikings defensive linemen from 1976-77 on Hall of Fame Head Coach Bud Grant's staff before becoming Bears defensive coordinator (1978-85) where he perfected the 46 defense and helped win Super Bowl XX with another epic defense.”
With Buddy Ryan on the staff, the 1976 Vikings won the NFC Championship with a 24-13 win over the Los Angeles Rams in the final playoff game at Metropolitan Stadium to earn a trip to Super Bowl XI. The ’76 Vikings outscored opponents 305 to 176. The 1977 Vikings won the NFC Central for a fifth-straight season and made it to the NFC Championship game.
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