Bill Parcells has done a lot in this league, but feels his work with the Jets in 1999 tops it all.
As the Jets enter tomorrow’s game at 1-6, a lot of fans feel the season is lost. Rex Ryan was hopeful that his Jets could shock the world in the role of the underdog, but so far, that has not been the case. Poor play in the red zone, ill-timed penalties, and shaky defense have been some of the main causes of the bad start. At 1-6, the Jets have dug themselves quite the hold to dig out of.
But is all really lost? Maybe it isn’t. Ironically, 2014 marks the 15th anniversary of Bill Parcells’ final season as Jets coach, and it was a year that the record was strangely similar.
The circumstances were different in the beginning, however. The Jets were coming off a 1998 campaign where the Jets posted their first division crown since the 60’s, with a record of 12-4. After being the Jaguars in the divisional playoffs, they took on Denver in the AFC title game. The Jets were leading at halftime before falling to the Broncos, and falling short of the Super Bowl once again.
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The Jets entered 1999 as one of the top Super Bowl candidates, but in week one, Vinny Testaverde was lost for the year on a non-contact injury. That sent the season into a spiral, after losing a close one to the Patriots on opening weekend. With Rick Mirer at quarterback, the Jets fell apart, losing six out of their first eight games, which ironically is the same place the Jets will be in 2014 if they beat Buffalo tomorrow.
Bill Parcells started a young quarterback, a guy we all know now from SNY postgames, Ray Lucas. The season turned around, and the Jets won six out of the last eight, to run their record to an even 8-8.
My point? Just a simple one. It can still be turned around. It won’t be easy, but history can repeat itself.