The New York Jets have reportedly agreed to a three-year deal to bring in new defensive coordinator Gregg Williams. This was ultimately the right decision for the franchise.
Williams is a big name in the coaching world with a plethora of NFL experience under his belt. The 60-year old has worked on defenses for years with his first notable gig coming in 1997 when he took over the then-Tennessee Oilers as the team’s defensive coordinator.
Since then, Williams has been the defensive mastermind for various teams including the Washington Redksins, Los Angeles Rams, and most recently the Cleveland Browns. His most notorious position, however, may come during his time as the defensive coordinator of the New Orleans Saints.
Williams was the architect behind the infamous “bounty scandal” where the Saints paid players for causing injuries to their opponents. The former Browns coach was originally suspended indefinitely from the NFL before finding his way back into the league as a senior assistant defensive coach with the Titans.
Despite his tainted reputation, Williams remains an excellent hire for the Jets. His brings a nasty attitude that should help to light a fire underneath some of the players on the team that seemed to just go through the motions under Todd Bowles‘ defense.
Williams flare and vicious personality is something that should mesh well with a player like Jamal Adams and really help the Jets defense define themselves as a unit. But apart from his bombastic temperament, what exactly does Williams bring to the table?
For starters, the former New Orleans defensive caller brings legitimate NFL head coaching experience to the table having coached the Buffalo Bills for three years from 2001 to 2003. Williams later served as the interim head coach of the Browns just last season leading them to a 5-3 record over eight games.
Experienced assistants are something that the Jets haven’t had in quite some time with no member of the 2018 coaching staff having had any NFL head coaching experience, apart from Bowles of course. In fact, the only member of the entire staff that had any experience coaching at even a prominent collegiate program was wide receivers coach Karl Dorrell who coached at UCLA for five seasons.
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From a schematic standpoint, Williams has typically run a 4-3 defense which would be a shift for a Jets franchise that has run the 3-4 since 2007. Given the current state of the roster, this would likely require a defensive switch-up as certain players would no longer fit on the team.
Players like Jordan Jenkins, Henry Anderson, and Steve McLendon would have a tough time finding roles on the new Jets 4-3 defense which would hurt their team value. At the same time, players like Darron Lee and Leonard Williams could see upticks in their production as they’d be forced into more natural roles.
Williams’ attacking style on defense means that Jets fans should expect a wide variety of blitz packages as an emphasis is placed on getting to the opposing quarterback. Jamal Adams is a player who could see more work as a linebacker/safety hybrid, especially on third-down, in Williams system.
Given the Jets inability to provide pressure with their front four, blitzing has become a necessary part of their defensive scheme making the Williams hire make all the more sense.
Jets fans wanted a departure from the bland, monotonous coaching staff of last year and an Adam Gase and Gregg Williams duo is sure to do the trick.