NY Jets hire new linebackers coach Mike Rutenberg

NY Jets Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports
NY Jets Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports /

The NY Jets continue to add to their coaching staff as Robert Saleh reportedly added yet another name to the defensive side of the ball.

NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport is reporting that the Jets have hired now-former San Francisco 49ers assistant Mike Rutenberg to be the team’s new linebackers coach.

Rutenberg spent the 2020 season as the passing game specialist under Saleh with the 49ers after spending seven years with the Jacksonville Jaguars. And in Jacksonville, Rutenberg also crossed paths with the Jets’ new head coach.

Saleh served as the Jaguars’ linebackers coach from 2014 to 2016, during which Rutenberg was the team’s assistant defensive backs coach and later a defensive assistant.

What are the NY Jets getting in Mike Rutenberg?

In 2016, Saleh and Rutenberg’s final season with the Jaguars, the team’s defense improved from allowing the 24th-most points in the year prior to allowing the sixth-least a season later.

Prior to joining the Jaguars, Rutenberg served on the UCLA coaching staff as a graduate assistant where he was in charge of playbook administration and opponent breakdown.

While he will join the Jets as their linebackers coach, his specialty is definitely in pass coverage. His background as a defensive backs coach and passing game specialist is good news for a Jets’ linebacker corps that has struggled against the pass in recent years.

This could mean big things for someone like C.J. Mosley who has excelled in coverage throughout his career. If he stays healthy in 2021, Mosley could be in-line for a major comeback season.

Rutenberg joins the likes of Marquand Manuel and Tony Oden who were reportedly hired earlier today. Manuel and Oden will both work in the secondary with the former being the Jets’ safeties coach and the latter a senior defensive assistant and cornerbacks coach.

It seems the emphasis today was on pass coverage after adding defensive line coaches Aaron Whitecotton and Nate Ollie last month.

Saleh continues to add to the growing list of coaches on his staff emphasizing a desire to add a bunch of different football minds from all different backgrounds.

Notably, Saleh’s defensive staff is already larger than the one Adam Gase had with a total of nine defensive coaches reported thus far as compared to eight that Gase had.

The same goes for the offensive side of the ball with 11 offensive coaches hired thus far as compared to only nine a year ago.

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Robert Saleh’s staff is nearly complete and Rutenberg is likely one of the final additions.