There has been a massive and breaking development regarding the Dragons' coaching future, as Jason Ryles has turned down the offer to coach the Dragons.

As reported by Danny Weidler this morning and confirmed by Dragons boss Ryan Webb, Jason Ryles has turned down the job of coaching the Dragons.

He has since been confirmed to return to the Melbourne Storm at the beginning of the 2024 pre-season.

"Jason notified us this morning that he no longer wanted to be considered for the role," Webb said via The Daily Telegraph.

"It wasn't the right time for him."

"We appreciate him being honest and rather find out now than in six months time that he didn't feel comfortable.

"We will continue on our process with the other candidates and hopefully bring it to a head shortly."

The decision comes after the club offered Ryles a four-year contract this week. Instead, the former Roosters assistant coach is headed to the Melbourne Storm in a coaching role, which the club confirmed.

"Jason is a highly respected person in the game, he's a talented coach and he will strengthen our football program across a number of different areas," Melbourne CEO Justin Rodski said.

“Not only will Jason add further depth to our coaching ranks, but he will play an important role working with our pathways, academies, and junior representative programs in the coming years."

NRL Rd 5 - Roosters v Eels
SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 30: Sydney Roosters assistant coach Jason Ryles during the round five NRL match between the Sydney Roosters and the Parramatta Eels at Allianz Stadium on March 30, 2023 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

This was followed by a statement from Jason Ryles regarding his decision.

“It wasn't an easy decision to make but I am very comfortable knowing I am returning to Storm and can't wait to get back the Club,” Ryles said.

"This was a decision I made with my family, and I know it will be best for my coaching growth and development."

"I have an enormous amount of respect for the Club and couldn't resist the opportunity to return to work with Craig, Frank and the football department when it was presented."

“The Roosters have been a wonderful club to work at and I am grateful to them for the opportunity they have provided me over the last couple of seasons.”

Ryles will sit out the rest of this season before returning to coach under Craig Bellamy. While the Storm haven't confirmed how long he is contracted for, according to The Daily Telegraph, Ryles has agreed to a long-term deal with an option to leave after two seasons if he is offered an opportunity elsewhere.

Ryles is expected to fill the shoes of Bellamy when he decides to retire as Storm coach in a succession plan just like the Wests Tigers with Tim Sheens and Benji Marshall.

NRL Rd 7 - Dolphins v Rabbitohs
BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA - APRIL 13: Assistant Coach Ben Hornby of the Rabbitohs passes the ball during the warm up before the round seven NRL match between the Dolphins and South Sydney Rabbitohs at Suncorp Stadium on April 13, 2023 in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Bradley Kanaris/Getty Images)

The decision by Ryles to reject the job has reportedly left the club stunned. It is unknown who is expected to take the head coaching role now, but Dean Young, Ben Hornby and John Morris are three names that have entered the mix.

An assistant coach at the Cowboys, The Daily Telegraph reports Young has had several discussions with the Dragons. Just like Ryles, Young is a former player of the Dragons, representing them in 209 games from 2003-2012.

Before moving to North Queensland, Young was the interim head coach of the Dragons in 2020. Coaching six games, he posted a 33% win rate with two wins and four losses.

Ben Hornby is also expected to play a part in future talks regarding the job. Hornby shares the same manager as Ryles and has been granted permission by Jason Demetriou at the Rabbitohs to leave his current position as an assistant if a head coaching role becomes available.