NY Jets hire coach with connections to Derek Carr and Ryan Tannehill

NY Jets, Todd Downing
NY Jets, Todd Downing / Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

The NY Jets promised to add a veteran offensive assistant to their coaching staff this offseason, and they fulfilled that promise on Monday with the hiring of former Tennessee Titans offensive coordinator Todd Downing.

Downing has coached in the NFL for nearly two decades and has had stints as an offensive coordinator with both the Titans and the then-Oakland Raiders. It's likely no coincidence that he crossed paths with two potential Jets QB targets at both of those stops.

Downing has been a part of the Titans' offensive coaching staff in every year that Ryan Tannehill has been with the team, serving as his offensive coordinator in each of the last two seasons.

Meanwhile, with the Raiders, Downing helped coach Derek Carr, first as his quarterbacks coach and later as his offensive coordinator. Both Carr and Tannehill could be feasible targets for the Jets this offseason.

Todd Downing's experience with Derek Carr and Ryan Tannehill is notable

Carr, in particular, found plenty of success under Downing's leadership. The soon-to-be-free-agent quarterback made the Pro Bowl in each of the three seasons he was paired with Downing — the only three Pro Bowl appearances of his career prior to 2022.

Downing was even named PFF's quarterbacks coach of the year in 2015 for his work with Carr. Carr, himself, has been outspoken about his love for Downing as well. The two reportedly remain very close to this day.

His stint in Tennessee wasn't as promising, however. Downing's offense finished 20th and 21st in DVOA in his two seasons as an offensive coordinator, and Titans fans were very vocal with their criticisms this past year.

Chants of "Fire Todd Downing" became commonplace, and the fan base rejoiced when the Titans decided to part ways last month. He was not well-liked by the fan base in Tennessee.

To make matters worse, Downing was arrested for a DUI last November. and he even served jail time for it last month. That hasn't impacted the Jets' decision-making process, however.

Ultimately, Downing's track record is spotty, but his experience with both Carr and Tannehill is notable. Including Nathaniel Hackett's history with Aaron Rodgers and Robert Saleh's history with Jimmy Garoppolo, the Jets are covering their bases.

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They have coaches on their staff who have experience with each of the top quarterbacks on the market this offseason. That's not a coincidence.