The New York Jets have found their new leader as Adam Gase has officially been named as the new head coach of the team.
The New York Jets dropped their final game of the 2018 season to the New England Patriots and walked off the Gillette Stadium field. The team, like usual, went into the locker room, spoke to the media, and then flew back to the Big Apple.
However, this flight back to New York was much different. The plane touched down and Todd Bowles was relieved of his duties as the team’s head coach not too long after.
Mike Maccagnan and team brass were tasked with finding the team’s new coach, but this time it meant much more. They needed to find a coach who would change the stale culture surrounding Gang Green and one who could groom Sam Darnold.
The Jets did their due diligence by interviewing big names such as Mike McCarthy, but in the end, it was a former AFC East coach that landed the job. Adam Gase has been named the team’s next coach, and fans and media members are perplexed.
The question that begs to be answered is not solely “why?”. More importantly, the question is “what are the Jets getting from Gase?”
Many people may not know this, but there was a time where Gase was as highly regarded as some of today’s best young offensive minds like Kyle Shanahan. He had worked through the ranks, where he held positions on coaching staffs with Nick Saban at LSU, Rod Marinelli with the Detroit Lions and John Fox with the Chicago Bears and Denver Broncos.
The now 40-year old was a hotshot in the making and he was known for his offensive mind that helped bleed the last ounce of football out of Peyton Manning, helped manufacture one of Jay Cutler‘s best years of his career and dragged a team to the playoffs with Ryan Tannehill and Matt Moore under center.
The good here is that Gase has been able to work magic with quarterbacks. More importantly, he helped lead Manning to the best statistical year of his career at age 37 as the Broncos offensive coordinator in 2013, cut down Cutler’s turnovers, and has made Tannehill an average signal-caller.
Gase was no fly on the wall either. Manning reportedly called the Jets and recommended Gase. Take his offensive mind, mix it with the fact he has been able to pick the brains of some coaching legends, and you’ll find it hard not to be optimistic about the idea of him grooming Darnold and dragging the Jets out of mediocrity.
There is no arguing that Gase has been somewhat of a “quarterback guru,” and it’s not hard to understand how he’s had that success when you look at the names he has coached under. But that doesn’t mean he was able to translate that into success as a head coach.
Gase has somewhat of a fiery attitude that has rubbed both players and the media the wrong way. This “arrogance” will be an issue if he doesn’t leave it back in Miami.
That attitude won’t only play poorly with the intimidating New York media, but burning bridges with important players in the locker room could lead to a major setback as it did with the Dolphins.
There are reports that Gase created issues with multiple players while with the Dolphins. He has been linked to running both Jarvis Landry and Jay Ajayi out of town. Other people, such as former linebacker Channing Crowder have said Gase lost the locker room and respect from some players. Those allegations may hold true when you look at all the young talent that has seemingly failed to take the next stop for the Dolphins.
Of course, that’s a former player’s opinion and it may be false to a certain extent. However, it is something to worry about with crucially important young players on the Jets like Darnold, Jamal Adams, and even Leonard Williams.
While some of what has been said above is speculation and probably opinion, Gase’s inability to translate his offensive scheme while with the Dolphins is a fact. Besides Gase’s first season in Miami when the team went to the playoffs while averaging 22.7 points-per-game, the Dolphins offense routinely finished in the bottom five when it came to points-per-game.
To put that into perspective, Bowles and the Jets averaged more points-per-game the last two seasons. So, you may be thinking “is this guy a product of the coaching above him and great talent or did he just need to leave the Dolphins?”
So, what are the Jets getting?
Bashing the Gase hiring seems too easy. Yes, McCarthy was out there, and he was the sexy name, but Gase isn’t as much as of a “safe pick” as some may believe he is. In an offseason and era in the NFL where teams look more towards the next Sean McVay, the Jets decided to go with a more proven guy and that’s more than fine.
Gase has proven that he can work with talent and he can put players in perfect situations to succeed. However, he needs to tone it down as far as his attitude goes and not tear down the locker room. More or less, he cannot be his own worst enemy.
The Jets are getting a guy who wants to win, and a guy who may be on one of his last legs as far as being a head coach in the NFL. They’re also getting someone who has a very good shot at making Darnold the franchise QB that many think he will be.
Not too much more can be speculated until Gase puts his staff together and we see how he drafts and what they do in free agency. Until then, Gase seems to be a fair hire that has plenty of upside.