10:58pm: The Jets aren’t expected to make any hires this weekend, tweets Mehta.
7:31pm: Now that the Bears have hired Ryan Pace as their general manager, the Jets are the league’s lone team searching for both a GM and a head coach, but it appears the club has its sights set on a pair of top targets. According to Brian Costello of the New York Post, Texans director of college scouting Mike Maccagnan has emerged as the favorite for the Jets’ GM vacancy, while Seahawks defensive coordinator Dan Quinn is the frontrunner for the head coaching position.
While former Bills head coach Doug Marrone was initially viewed as the top candidate to replace Rex Ryan in New York, Marrone isn’t one of the team’s preferred options at this point, a source tells Costello. Instead, Quinn, Cardinals defensive coordinator Todd Bowles, and Seahawks offensive line coach Tom Cable are the most serious contenders, having had the best interviews of New York’s candidates so far.
Quinn was busy during Seattle’s bye week, speaking to the Falcons, Bills, Bears, and 49ers as well, so the Jets will have competition for the coveted defensive coordinator. However, the team’s interest in Quinn is mutual, according to Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News, who reports that the Seahawks DC has told friends that New York is his top choice.
As for Maccagnan, both Costello and Mehta indicate that the GM hopeful is meeting with Jets owner Woody Johnson and the club’s front office brass for dinner tonight. Maccagnan is the only candidate to receive a second interview with the Jets to date, and Mehta writes that Johnson, team president Neil Glat, and consultants Charley Casserly and Ron Wolf have made the Texans executive their top target.
If Maccagnan is tabbed as John Idzik‘s successor, the Jets may bring aboard a veteran contract negotiator and cap expert to complement his skill set. According to Mehta, if Quinn were to land a head coaching job, he would like his new team to add former Buccaneers GM (and current ESPN analyst) Mark Domenik to the front office — the Jets have reached out to Domenik about a possible role, per Mehta.
Although a front office hiring or two could happen soon, the Jets won’t get the chance to speak to Quinn again until the Seahawks are eliminated from the postseason or win the NFC title game. Assuming Seattle defeats the Panthers this weekend, as is expected, that means the Jets would have to wait until at least January 18 to talk to or hire the Seahawks coordinator.