New York Jets: Give Mike Maccagnan and Todd Bowles Time to Grow and Succeed


As Paul Newbold noted last night, the Jets have been hard at work turning the organization over. Mike Maccagnan and Todd Bowles are in place, and both are starting to shape their staffs. Most recently, Maccagnan was in the news, firing both Terry Bradway and Jeff Bauer, both top Jets scouts. The faces of the Jets organization are changing, and changing rapidly.

Most Jets fans are thrilled about these moves, and they have reason to be. The Jets have chosen a highly regarded football scout to be their general manager. His background in personnel is well-documented and extensive. Maccagnan is well liked and respected by his peers, and should fit in well here in New York.

Todd Bowles is also a well-respected assistant coach. His defenses have been consistent through his years in Arizona, and is adept at coaching the secondary, an area where the Jets need serious help. He was the assistant coach of the year, and Bowles is clearly ready to take on the leading role.

There is no reason not to be excited about the moves the Jets have made. But, be careful Jets fans. Let’s not put the cart before the horse. I have done a lot of reading on social media these days, talking about how Woody Johnson and company have fixed the problems with the Jets.

We really don’t know that yet. We know that the steps the Jets are taking look good. But, we don’t know if they have fixed the problem. Think about it.

Dec 28, 2014; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Texans defensive end

J.J. Watt

(99) waves to the crowd after the Texans defeated the Jacksonville Jaguars 23-17 at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

There is no doubting the credentials of Mike Maccagnan. He has paid his dues, worked as a scout, making his way up to a director role while with the Texans. Maccagnan is a protegé of Jets search consultant, Charley Casserly. Casserly has a terrific track record, and had Woody’s ear. His recommendation is a solid one, and one that Woody took to heart. Maccagnan has had his hands on some great drafts while with the Texans, including J.J. Watt. Maccagnan has been waiting for this job, and is primed to do a great job.

However, Mike Maccagnan has never been a general manager before. Yes, there is a first time for everything. But the fact of the matter is, we don’t know how Maccagnan is going to perform. Nobody really knows how big of a role he had in the draft room. Scouts, even high ones, are often overruled. Ask Terry Bradway, we would have had Russell Wilson if he had been listened to. We just don’t know how good Maccagnan is going to be.

The Jets just finished up with a first time general manager. We used to call him a Ninja. Then we built billboards and banners begging for his firing.

I am not saying that Mike Maccagnan is going to be that bad. I am just saying we don’t know.

Dec 7, 2014; Glendale, AZ, USA; Arizona Cardinals defensive coordinator Todd Bowles against the Kansas City Chiefs at University of Phoenix Stadium. The Cardinals defeated the Chiefs 17-14. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Todd Bowles is one of the best up and coming assistants in the National Football League. Everywhere he has been, people have good things to say about him. He spent just one year with Andy Reid in Philadelphia, and Reid called the Jets hire of Bowles a “great hire”. He brought his Arizona Cardinals defense to more than just relevant, they were actually quite good, despite major injuries. Players have gushed about Bowles since the hiring was announced. Antonio Cromartie returning to the Jets is a real possibility, thanks to Todd Bowles.

He was the interim coach in Miami for three games, winning two of them.

But, he has never been a full-time head coach. Bowles is ready to do the job, and is an exciting hire. But, we don’t know how he will do. The Jets may have just hired the newest star head coach. They may also have hired a dud. Maybe Bowles is something in the middle.

More from Jets News

We just don’t know. I am not saying the Jets didn’t make a step they had to make. All I am saying is that the jury is still out.

These are exciting times for the Jets. Finally, there are football people running the team, and a top flight assistant coach chosen to lead the team into the future.

But, to paraphrase coach Parcells, let’s not put them in Canton just yet. Let’s see the product they put out there before we say that the Jets have been fixed. That’s all I ask.

Next: Q and A with Karl Dunbar