IK Enemkpali didn’t spend all that much time in the penalty box, did he?

Yeah, I know, wrong sport. But the analogy fits for a guy who sucker punched his way off the Jets roster, only to find a new home within 24 hours. And it should come as no surprise — whatsoever — that the guy throwing Enemkpali a lifeline for his one punch KO of Geno Smith was Rex Ryan.

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You gotta love Rex. OK, maybe you don’t. But c’mon, you’ve got to admit the guy sure knows how to operate.

He also knows how to evaluate talent, looking past what’s on the surface and actually inside a man’s sole to determine what kind of football player he is. And while that says something about what he thinks of Enemkpali, it obviously also says something about what Rex knows about Geno.

After all, he coached both of them in 2014 with the Jets. Rex has perspective into both of their personalities, backgrounds and demeanors that other people simply don’t.

Rex Ryan isn’t shy about the guys who he picks to play for his football team, which today is the Buffalo Bills.

Richie Incognito.

Percy Harvin.

And now IK Enemkpali.

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If you play hard, play tough, then you’ll have a home with Rex Ryan. The off-the-field “stuff” isn’t the only determinant for him. Rex knows this kid can play HIS way, and that’s all he cares about.

Who knows, maybe Rex also feels some sort of kinship with Enemkpali since he too was fired by the Jets. Speaking of the J-E-T-S, even with Ryan several hundred miles to the North in upstate New York, it sure looks like Gang Green circus still exists. Which means the Big Apple media can’t blame the once-upon-a-time-ago perceived ringleader for this mess.

What Rex Ryan did by quickly picking up Enemkpali off the scrap heap is why I wanted him here as head coach of the Atlanta Falcons when Mike Smith was shown the door in Flowery Branch, and Arthur Blank was initially interviewing perspective candidates.

Despite all of the bombast and attention-seeking, what I liked about Rex – and yes, as a long-suffering Jets fan I was smitten with him because he did make them viable immediately – was that no stone would be left un-turned in the search for players who would fit the mentality and playing personality that he sought for his football team.

Rex appeared to be No. 1 on the list back in January. Having interviewed with Blank and the Falcons back in 2008 before Smitty was hired, Ryan had nonetheless impressed Blank. But not enough to hire him then.

And as things turned out, Rex opted to go with the Bills in quick fashion after Blank and the Falcons chose to interview other candidates and keep their options open. That’s how Dan Quinn eventually arrived from Seattle.

Are the likes of Incognito, Harvin and Enemkpali classy and savory human beings? Of course they aren’t. But with Rex Ryan, it doesn’t matter. He has no filter.

And that’s why he never would’ve fit here in Atlanta, where the rather large shadow of Michael Vick is still very much a factor, and being as close to clean and purified an individual as possible very much matters in the vetting process.

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And – love him or hate him — that’s not a world in which Rex Ryan exists.