NY Jets hire Robert Saleh as team’s next head coach

NY Jets, Robert Saleh (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
NY Jets, Robert Saleh (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /

The NY Jets have reportedly hired 49ers defensive coordinator Robert Saleh.

The NY Jets have reportedly struck a deal with San Francisco 49ers defensive coordinator Robert Saleh to be the team’s next head coach.

As first reported by ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Jets have agreed to terms on a deal with Saleh just a few days after he completed his second interview with the team.

The Jets made Saleh one of their top targets from the very beginning, and their intentions were made clear when it was reported by NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport that the team would be bringing him back for a second interview this past Tuesday.

Saleh was the first candidate flown out to the Jets’ facilities in Florham Park to meet in-person. And as it turns out, he was one of only two that got to that stage.

After meeting with team owner Christopher Johnson and Jets brass on Wednesday, the organization felt comfortable hiring the highly-regarded head coach candidate.

Other teams such as the Detroit Lions, Philadelphia Eagles, and Jacksonville Jaguars had shown considerable interest in Saleh meaning that if the Jets wanted to get a deal done, it had to happen soon.

General manager Joe Douglas and the rest of the Jets’ staff weren’t going to pass up the opportunity to hire one of the hottest names in this year’s coaching cycle.

The NY Jets must have been impressed with Robert Saleh’s work with the 49ers

Saleh has been the 49ers’ defensive coordinator since 2017, but it wasn’t until the 2019 season that he started to earn national praise. The 49ers finished with the NFL’s second-best defense helped in part by superstar talent at all three levels.

But it was his work in 2020 that truly established himself as a top-tier defensive mind.

Despite dealing with countless injuries to the likes of Richard Sherman, Nick Bosa, Dee Ford, Solomon Thomas, Jaquiski Tartt, K’Waun Williams, and others, Saleh’s unit still finished fifth in the NFL in yards allowed per game.

Saleh got a combined 10 games from Sherman, Bosa, Ford, and Thomas yet still managed to captain one of the league’s best defenses. That accomplishment should not be understated.

The 41-year-old became just as known for his impressive defensive gameplans as he did for his boisterous sideline antics. Saleh’s passionate and animated coaching style has long been lauded by fans, players, and media alike.

The Jets are hoping that Saleh could bring more success to the franchise after a disastrous two-year stretch with the now-departed Adam Gase. Gase finished his Jets career with a 9-23 record including a 2-14 finish in 2020.

Saleh, in many ways, is the anti-Gase. And the Jets will be hoping that the same is true in regard to his success on the field.

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The Robert Saleh era has officially arrived in New York.