With the NY Jets, head coach Todd Bowles has brought them back to reality and has the entire organization moving in the right direction.
Before Todd Bowles was the head coach of the team, the Jets were a media circus and the joke of the NFL. The head coach at the time, Rex Ryan had tried to be to friendly and run a team like it was a fraternity house. The players did not have any discipline and did not focus on the work that had to get done. It went well for the first two years because they reached the AFC Championship games but after those two years, it went into a downward spiral of losing seasons.
What was the icing on the cake was when Ryan guaranteed they would win it all before anything started and the team was fixed. Owner Woody Johnson was frustrated with everything going on and cleaned house as he fired both Ryan and general manager John Idzik to start over with a clean slate.
Woody Johnson hired Mike Maccagnan as the next general manager and New Jersey native and defensive coordinator of the Arizona Cardinals, Bowles as his new head coach. Bowles had many teams interested in him as their head coach which means you must be doing something right.
Johnson hired Maccagnan because of his success with the Houston Texans as director of college scouting. Bowles had learned a lot from the head coaches he had worked for: Al Groh, Bill Parcells and Bruce Arians. Every time you look at Bowles, he has a poker face on to where you have no idea of what he is thinking about. The players have been disciplined more and have taken game preparation more serious.
If you listen to him during the postgame’s interviews he is never satisfied and doesn’t want his players to accept being mediocre. He wants them to be the best they know they can be in practice, in football games and in real life. Bowles knew he had a tough road ahead of him because the Jets last season finished with a record of 4-12. Bowles along with Maccagnan wanted to bring in veteran players to help other players understand what it takes to succeed.
In past seasons, the Jets were amongst the most teams to receive personal foul penalties that cost them multiple games. Bowles was always pushing his team to be disciplined and not commit any mental mistakes. The team was still committing those penalties early on in the year but as the season went on they fixed it up and they rarely happened. This quote “next man up” stuck with the players and had the team playing at a completely different level.
Bowles and Maccagnan brought in players that you wouldn’t normally see start and gave them the chance as the players they brought on the team ended up being a big part of their success. Bowles was a defensive minded head coach so you knew he would have one of the best defenses in the league. The Jets were ranked as the fourth best defense in the league which was a big improvement from past seasons.
Bowles had the Cardinals’ defense ranked in the top 10 of the NFL before he left. Bowles challenged his team to finish games because some of the games the team started off flat but in the second half they dominated. Like most coaches in any sport, they hate to lose but with Bowles he showed his frustration and he let his team hear it.
Even though the Jets finished this season above .500 with a 10-6 record and missed the playoffs, Bowles wants his players to learn from this and come back next season hungrier. He doesn’t think this season was a successful one because they had missed the playoffs which you like to hear as fan.
At first when they had hired Bowles, I wasn’t sure in how everything would play out. This season you saw a lot of fight out of the Jets because they kept on playing from start to finish. This season, the Jets had fought back in many games and ended up winning them when last year they would of given up. The turning point for the season was when they played the New York Giants and won in overtime when it looked like it was impossible for them to win.
Bowles had emphasized to finish and don’t give up while challenging one another to be the best. Many players on the team exceeded expectations and had one of there best seasons amongst their careers in the NFL. What was a big problem on this team was the offense side of the ball and this year they played very well but still need to improve a bit more.
Overall, Bowles believes in the future of this team but he knows they have lots to improve on and need to get to work on it. Next years opponents will push them even further because the teams they will face are above .500 teams that are in or were close to making the playoffs. Bowles just needs to focus on making the Jets better and continue moving them in the right direction.