Today is a day of celebration for NY Jets fans, as Bill Belichick was officially let go as head coach of the New England Patriots after over two decades and six Super Bowl wins. However, things could sour quickly if the Patriots manage to knock it out of the park by hiring former Tennessee Titans coach Mike Vrabel.
Vrabel is a tremendous coach, but even the best out there aren't immune from giving their buddies a more prominent role despite years of performance suggesting they are unable to handle such a responsibility. One of those buddies in question is in New York right now.
Jets offensive line coach Keith Carter is the luckiest man in America, as he managed to keep his job for the 2024 season despite the worst-performing unit in the league, injuries to key players that followed him from Tennessee, and multiple current players openly ripping him on social media.
Carter previously served on Vrabel's staff from 2018 to 2022, and it wouldn't be out of the realm of possibility that any team who hires Vrabel will do so under the condition that Carter is coming along in a prominent role like offensive line coach. Jets fans would be overjoyed if this actually went down.
Could Mike Vrabel hire NY Jets OL coach Keith Carter?
Carter would be making a lateral move in this scenario, and the Jets would have the right to block such a move. While the Jets have stood behind Carter after the end of the season, he has already worn out his welcome in New York.
Robert Saleh might say he struggled because of the Jets' injuries, but his offensive lines in Tennessee were hurt frequently, too. This all circles back to a culture of overworking players that made its way to New York. Players ripping a position coach in public is beyond the pale.
Between Mekhi Becton agreeing with former Titans OT Taylor Lewan's criticism of Carter and Breece Hall laughing at the same post, the Jets don't seem to like him. Patrick DiMarco, a fullback who ran into Carter in Atlanta, co-signed those thoughts. Former Jets linemen Adam Pankey and Trystan Colon have liked tweets critical of Carter.
Bringing in Vrabel would ensure the Patriots hire a tremendous leader of men, but his inability to build an offensive staff after Arthur Smith left ultimately brought him down. Carter (or possibly Todd Downing) going to New England would help start the Vrabel era off on the wrong foot, which is good for the Jets.