It’s convenient to hop on the Fire Todd Bowles bandwagon these days, cool to call for the head coach’s job after this awful season, but it could do more harm than good for the Jets. The ramifications for making such an impulsive move might prove disastrous.
Bowles has a better reputation in league circles than anyone on One Jets Drive. That doesn’t give him a free pass, but folks in the NFL universe are already beginning to chuckle at the thought that Woody Johnson would actually consider parting ways with a respected coach only two years into the job.
“Woody needs to stay the course,” said a league executive who recently interviewed for the Jets general manager opening. “He can’t be switching this every two years, because (the coaching vacancy) would become unattractive for a lot of coaches. He doesn’t want to have that job that’s turning over every two years. He’s got to give Bowles another shot.”
The Jets head coaching gig could become toxic if Johnson fires Bowles after this season. Does the owner really want to become the Cleveland Browns, who are on their fifth head coach in seven years?
Cleveland has become a radioactive laughingstock in league circles. The Raiders went down the same road of perpetual coaching turnover (four coaches in seven years) before finally getting on the right philosophical track.
Johnson must resist the urge to make a head coaching change after this season. Raise your hand if you thought Bowles was a bad coach four months ago. I certainly didn’t.
Fans have short-term memories, so here’s a refresher course: Bowles won 10 games as a rookie head coach with an aging core. The roster revealed itself to be a house of cards.
The Jets gave an embarrassing effort on Monday night against the Colts.
(Al Bello/Getty Images)
“That was a major rebuilding job they walked into,” Charley Casserly, the lead consultant in Johnson’s general manager/head coaching searches in 2015, told the Daily News. “It still is.”
Bowles is far from perfect, but two years simply isn’t enough time to prove his worth. The feeling on One Jets Drive, however, is that Bowles needs to make changes on his coaching staff.
Johnson gave one-year contract extensions to position coaches before the 2016 season, according to sources, but it’s a near certainty that some of Bowles’ assistants won’t return next year. (The position coaches originally signed two-year contracts in 2015 before getting extensions this summer.)
There are a few obvious position groups that have underachieved. Bowles, who fired Bobby April after one terrible season by his special teams unit last year, will have to upgrade his staff.
Bowles is still well-respected in the Jets locker room despite the perception that some players quit on him during Monday night’s 41-10 loss to the Colts. Players have publicly and privately supported Bowles along the way.
“Sometimes you blow up stuff and feel like that’s the answer. And it’s not,” said Brandon Marshall, who has been one of Bowles’ staunchest supporters. “People expect guys to win right away. You need time to build things.”
Todd Bowles and Browns coach Hue Jackson.
(Jason Miller/Getty Images)
There’s no sugarcoating that Monday night was an embarrassment. The players that gave questionable effort should immediately be benched and ultimately cut/traded.
Fans have every right to be angry and disgusted, but it absolutely shouldn’t prompt Johnson to fire a head coach after two seasons. If he does, the HC of the NYJ will become a less-than-desirable gig.
Coveted head coaching candidates will steer clear of this hot mess.
“I think it would be hard for anybody good to go there,” said the former candidate for the Jets GM job about landing a new coach if Bowles were let go. “The impression would be that the next guy to get fired would be Mike (Maccagnan). So, it causes a little bit of chaos.”
“There needs to be continuity,” he added. “The other thing is this: Who the hell do you replace Bowles with? Josh McDaniels isn’t going to go there. You can’t put Kyle Shanahan in that market. Who are you going to hire? None of those big names are going to go there.”
Maybe Bowles isn’t the answer. Maybe there will come a time when he has to go. But that time isn’t now… unless Johnson doesn’t mind the Jets turning into the Browns.
Source: NY Daily News Headlines Sports News