What About the Jets Offensive Coaches?
By Alan Schechter
Oct 14, 2012; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Jets offensive coordinator Tony Sparano on the sidelines against the Indianapolis Colts during the second half at MetLife Stadium. Jets won 35-9. Mandatory Credit: Debby Wong-US PRESSWIRE
The Jets offense is falling apart at the seams. They aren’t performing well, and it doesn’t seem like there is a light at the end of the tunnel at this point. For God’s sake, they have recorded 1 offensive touchdown over the previous two games. Instead of coming out of the New England game, which they played well enough to win, they have regressed and been several times worse than we expected.
So naturally, there has been a lot of talk about what to do, both short term, and long term. The obvious choice in the short term is to replace Mark Sanchez with Tim Tebow, which we have debated at length on here. There is also a lot of talk about Rex Ryan. Is he coaching for his job? What about Mike Tannenbaum? Should the Jets make a move to bring in a new GM next year? But there is another thing to consider, which I haven’t heard much talk about, at least not to the degree I am thinking. What about the offensive coaching staff? When I say the offensive coaching staff, I mean the ENTIRE OFFENSIVE COACHING STAFF. Let’s start at the top and work our way down.
TONY SPARANO-Here is one guy that has gotten a lot of grief, and deservedly so. Here is Tony, coming in for Schottenheimer, and he’s going to bring the Jets back to their physical offense. “The Jets will dominate with their rushing attack”, and things of that nature, are all we heard proclaimed from the mountain all offseason. Well, how has that worked out? The Jets are a whopping 16th in the NFL in rushing. We could have kept Schotty around to do that? This is the big physical attack we were all waiting to see? I think not. We can talk about the playcalling, we have done that already. What about the “wildcat”? We were supposed to be getting the mastermind of the wildcat. “He ran it with Pat White, imagine what he will do with Tim Tebow!” How often did we hear THAT? How has that worked out. PATHETIC! Not impressive out of Tony Sparano.
July 29, 2012; Cortland, NY, USA; New York Jets quarterbacks coach Matt Cavanaugh (left) and quarterback Tim Tebow (15) talk during training camp at SUNY Cortland. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-US PRESSWIRE
MATT CAVANAUGH(QB COACH)-We could talk all day about this guy? What possible reason could the Jets have for still employing this man? Does Cavanaugh have revealing photos on the Jets front office? He must, because that could be the only reason he has his job. He came in to the organization with coach Ryan, so this is is fourth season with the team. And…..the quarterback has gotten worse and worse! Mark Sanchez’s regression has to at least be partially blamed on Matt Cavanaugh. If you are assigned to coach a particular position, and the players in that position get worse and worse, that coach needs to go. This should be the first move made by the Jets, no questions asked.
MIKE DEVLIN(TE COACH)-If anyone on this staff should be considered to remain, it would be tight ends coach Mike Devlin. Despite the fact that Dustin Keller has been injured, the tight ends haven’t been terrible in 2012. Josh Baker was showing promise during the preseason before he was injured. Same for Cumberland, before he got hurt, he had his moments catching passes this year as well.
He has even gotten production out of a guy not too many people heard of before the Jets acquired him. Who hasn’t been at least partially impressed with Konrad Reuland, in the limited time that he has played? I know I expected a pure blocking tight end, and he has shown some decent hands in the receiving game as well. By and large, the tight ends have performed quite well, and Devlin deserves a lot of credit for that.
Turn the page and we will continue with the coaching staff.
August 4, 2011; Napa, CA, USA; Oakland Raiders wide receivers coach Sanjay Lal during training camp at the Napa Valley Marriott. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-US PRESSWIRE
SANJAY LAL(WR COACH)-Let’s talk about our first year WR coach, Sanjay Lal, seen in the picture in his previous job as WR coach with the Oakland Raiders. It’s pretty simple, Lal has come in here, and the WRs have not been good. Yes, they are young, but more often than not, they have shown bad tendencies and habits. They all have had problems with dropped passes during the year so far. No matter what you think of quarterback Mark Sanchez, it is an undeniable truth that the WRs have had difficulty getting separation on defensive backs. Mark has been bad, but it is not like the wide receivers have been great, and have given him a ton of help.
And talk about Chaz Schilens. Chaz came to the Jets because of his great relationship with this coach. You would think that getting this receiver with this coach, he would excel, no? How has THAT worked out? 16 catches, 150 yards, and 1 TD, that’s how. Yes, Schilens’ ability is debatable, but a coach should be able to bring SOMETHING out of a player, especially one he professes to be so close to. Yet, nothing. Had enough of Lal too.
ANTHONY LYNN(RB COACH)-Let’s talk about coach Lynn, a guy that doesn’t get a lot of attention. He came on the scene with Rex in 2009 as well, and to his credit, the running game was good the first two years. The Jets were number one in the league in rushing in 2009, and 4th in the league in 2010. But as much credit as you do give to Lynn for the success, you have to give credit to the veteran running backs on the team in those years. Thomas Jones ran for 1400 yards in 2009. He is an established veteran that didn’t need a lot of coaching. Same can be said for LaDainian Tomlinson, who found new life in 2010, running for 914 yards.
But, Lynn has had one running back to develop over the years, and that guy has been Shonn Greene. We don’t even need to talk numbers about Greene, just talk about the eye test. It would not be hard to argue that Shonn Greene has gotten progressively worse over his time with the Jets. Yet, Lynn hasn’t taken a hit. He should.
DAVE DEGUGLIELMO(OL COACH)-Now we come to the coach known as “Gugs”. Bill Callahan, previous offensive line coach, had clearly checked out by the end of the year. Maybe Bill had enough of the Jets locker room, that’s neither here nor there. The Jets needed a change at this position, so in comes DeGuglielmo. Yes, we have to give him a little slack in the fact that he is teaching a new blocking scheme. No doubt. But, we are over halfway through the season, and the blocking isn’t getting any better, especially in the ground game. A 16th ranked ground game, for a team that is supposed to live and die with the ground game, has to fall partially on the offensive line, and the offensive line coach. If we are cleaning house anyway, we can let him go too.
A lot of changes need to be made on the offensive side of the football. The Jets must make sure they don’t ignore the offensive coaching staff. It’s been bad.