Chan Gailey

Jets OC Chan Gailey Retires

The Jets announced that offensive coordinator Chan Gailey has retired. The Jets also announced that five coaches will not return: quarterbacks coach Kevin Patullo, running backs coach Marcel Shipp, defensive line coach Pepper Johnson, outside linebackers coach Mark Collins, and defensive backs coach Joe Danna. Defensive coordinator Kacy Rodgers, apparently, will be retained. Chan Gailey (vertical)

I’m grateful to Chan for joining our coaching staff and enjoyed working with him,” coach Todd Bowles said in the statement. “The respect that I have for him as a person and a coach only increased during our time together.”

It seems possible that Gailey would have been forced out even if he did not retire this offseason. The soon-t0-be 65-year-old oversaw an offense that had the second-worst offensive DVOA in the NFL this year. However, in 2015, Gailey’s offense that amassed a franchise-record 5,925 yards and scored 387 points, the most in a Jets season since 1998. There was lots of frustration over Gailey’s play-calling this year, but the team’s shortcomings under center probably played a bigger role.

The Jets are expected to target Eagles quarterbacks coach John DeFilippo and former Chargers coach Mike McCoy as OC options, according to Adam Caplan of ESPN.com and Albert Breer of The MMQB (Twitter links).

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Coaching/GM Notes, Pt. 2: Arians, Gase, Wolf

Here is Part 2 of our coaching/GM rumors post. Part 1 can be found here.

  • Despite his health concerns, Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians expects to return in 2017, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter (via Twitter). Schefter tweets that one of Arians’ top assistants, offensive coordinator Harold Goodwin, is expected to interview for a head coaching job with the Rams, Jaguars, and Bills.
  • As the 49ers get prepared to search for a new head coach and GM, a ghost from the past has reared its ugly head. According to Jay Glazer of FOX Sports (via Twitter), San Francisco was prepared to hire current Dolphins head coach Adam Gase two years ago. The team informed Gase that he was the choice, but GM Trent Baalke intervened at the last moment and convinced ownership not to hire Gase. The 49ers chose Jim Tomsula instead, and it has been all downhill from there.
  • The Packers are not expected to make major coaching changes–although offensive coordinator Edgar Bennett could get head coaching interviews–but GM Ted Thompson could step aside and become a senior scouting adviser, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com. One reason, according to Rapoport, is that Director of Football Operations Eliot Wolf is a highly-coveted football mind, and if he’s not promoted soon, Green Bay could lose him.
  • The Bengals are not expected to fire Marvin Lewis, who is signed through 2017, according to Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports. However, Lewis is not expected to get another one-year extension this offseason, which means that another disappointing campaign in 2017 could spell the end of his tenure as Cincinnati’s head coach.
  • Jets head coach Todd Bowles will likely be back for a third season, but offensive coordinator Chan Gailey is expected to be fired, according to Brian Costello of the New York Post.
  • The Ravens are expected to part ways with OC Marty Mornhinweg, and assuming they do, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets that Greg Roman is someone to “keep an eye on.”
  • Browns coaches have “deep concerns” with the direction of the team’s personnel department and are expected to push owner Jimmy Haslam for changes in that regard, according to La Canfora. While head coach Hue Jackson is not planning to request the removal of top football man Sashi Brown, the coaching staff would like a proven, old-school talent evaluator involved in player selection to provide something of a checks-and-balance system to Brown’s analytics-based approach.
  • La Canfora suggests that, if the Lions miss the playoffs this season, GM Bob Quinn could at least think about a coaching change, and his Patriots ties could lead him to consider Josh McDaniels and Matt Patricia, with whom he established strong relationships during his time in New England. While I personally could imagine Quinn’s being interested in McDaniels, I cannot see Patricia as a legitimate head coaching candidate at this point.

Growing Sense That Todd Bowles Is Safe

Second-year Jets head coach Todd Bowles, widely thought to be on the hot seat as a result of his club’s disappointing 2016 campaign, has a good chance of righting the ship in 2017, according to Rich Cimini of ESPN.com. Cimini reports that sources familiar with owner Woody Johnson‘s thinking say that Johnson remains a Bowles supporter and is not planning to cut him loose.

Todd Bowles

The reason, Cimini writes, is that Johnson feels he would be punishing Bowles–and GM Mike Maccagnan, both of whom were hired in January 2015–for the sins of previous regimes. Although the duo nearly lifted Gang Green to the playoffs last season with considerable help from veteran free agents, that performance was something of an illusion, as the core of the team was weak, and that weakness has manifested itself in a big way this year. As Cimini observes, only five current starters remain from the 2008 to 2014 drafts: Muhammad Wilkerson, Brian Winters, Quincy Enunwa, Calvin Pryor, and Sheldon Richardson. It is difficult to hold a new head coach and GM responsible for that poor level of inherited talent, and Johnson is therefore expected to give Bowles and Maccagnan a little extra rope (Maccagnan and Bowles are equals and report to Johnson directly, so Maccagnan has no say in Bowles’ fate).

ESPN’s Adam Schefter is apparently thinking along the same lines as Cimini, tweeting that there is a growing sense that Bowles’ job is safe.

Of course, Johnson is an impulsive owner who is capable of changing his mind at the drop of a hat. But whether or not Bowles keeps his job, Cimini does expect there to be at least one major change in the coaching staff, and that change would likely be the ouster of offensive coordinator Chan Gailey. Meanwhile, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com reiterates the notion that Bowles is safe (Twitter link), but Rapoport is expecting a significant roster overhaul, with several big-money veterans jettisoned from the club. Players who fit that description include Ryan Fitzpatrick (whose contract will expire at the end of 2016 anyway), Darrelle Revis, Brandon Marshall, and Nick Mangold. With respect to Mangold, Cimini reports that his ankle injury is pretty significant and at least one source close to the 33-year-old would not be surprised if he decided to call it a career.

But Johnson may not even be the one operating the Jets when all these decisions need to be made. As Rapoport writes in a separate piece, Johnson is a leading contender to be the United States ambassador to the United Kingdom under President-elect Donald Trump, and if that were to happen, Johnson would likely not be running the team on a day-to-day basis. In addition, Johnson would almost certainly resign from NFL committees on which he currently serves (the NFL’s Media Committee, Finance Committee, and Business Ventures Committee).

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

AFC Notes: Colts, Jets, Patriots, Bills

Although the Colts are now thin at linebacker following D’Qwell Jackson‘s four-game suspension, Indianapolis is unlikely to forge a reunion with free agent Nate Irving, according to Stephen Holder of the Indianapolis Star (Twitter link). Irving, whom Indy released in September, worked out for the Colts in last month, but is still looking for a contract. Instead, Indianapolis is likely to hand reserve ‘backer Edwin Jackson more playing time.

Here’s more from the AFC:

Sam Robinson and Zach Links contributed to this post.

East Notes: Jets, Bennett, D-Jax

Let’s take a look at some notes from around the league as Week 10 gets underway in full force:

  • Rich Cimini of ESPN.com does not believe Jets head coach Todd Bowles will be fired at season’s end, but that does not mean that there will be no changes to the coaching staff. Cimini writes that offensive coordinator Chan Gailey, for instance, will almost certainly be on the hot seat.
  • Ian Rapoport of NFL.com reports that, prior to signing his mega-deal this past offseason, Jets DE Muhammad Wilkerson sat down with Bowles to discuss his past disciplinary issues. During that meeting, Wilkerson vowed to behave and assured Bowles that he understood the responsibility that comes along with such a lucrative contract, which makes last week’s letdown all the more disturbing (Twitter links). Wilkerson’s 2016 numbers are already down, and a floundering Jets team cannot afford for him to be a disappointment both on and off the field.
  • Bryce Petty will be getting the start for the Jets today, largely because Ryan Fitzpatrick‘s knee is not quite game-ready. However, Fitzpatrick is serving as Petty’s backup today, while Christian Hackenberg is inactive. That decision shows just how raw Hackenberg really is; as Brian Costello of the New York Post tweets, it is clear that the Jets view an injured Fitzpatrick as a better option than a healthy Hackenberg.
  • Mike Reiss of ESPN.com reports that, when the Patriots acquired tight end Martellus Bennett this offseason, the two sides explored a scenario that would have added a year on to Bennett’s existing contract. However, no agreement was reached, and Bennett will consequently become part of New England’s large free agent class at season’s end.
  • DeSean Jackson is out this week with a rotator cuff injury, and Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets that the Redskins wideout is likely to miss at least next week’s game as well. Rapoport’s source says that Jackson’s prognosis is “not good.”
  • Earlier today, we examined the quarterback dilemmas of the Jets and Cowboys.

Jets Notes: Wilkerson, Hackenberg, Fitzpatrick

Jets players hope to see Muhammad Wilkerson soon, but they shouldn’t count on it, Rich Cimini of ESPN.com writes. “He’s the leader of the D-line,” linebacker David Harris said.

Actually, he’s one of the leaders of the defense. He’s a tremendous talent. He’s one of the best D-ends in the league, hands down. I hope he’s here.”

However, Wilkerson would hurt his leverage for a long-term deal if he were to show up before July 15, his deadline to sign the franchise tag tender. Furthermore, he’s still rehabbing his surgically repaired broken leg and it’s not necessarily guaranteed that he’ll be with his teammates in July. Some people believe that the Pro Bowl defensive end could consider not reporting to training camp, which would put some additional tension between the player and the team.

Here’s more on Gang Green:

  • Many view Jets rookie Christian Hackenberg as a developmental quarterback, but offensive coordinator Chan Gailey says the Penn State product could be closer NFL-ready than you might expect. “He retained a great deal from the pro style of offense that [former Penn State head coach Bill O’Brien] had,” Gailey said, according to Brian Costello of the New York Post. “He’s ahead in that respect, but he’s behind in seeing what’s going to happen to him defensively in the NFL.”
  • Ryan Fitzpatrick and the team’s receivers are missing out on valuable time to grow together, Manish Mehta of the Daily News writes. Last year, Fitzpatrick’s chemistry with Brandon Marshall and Eric Decker made everyone wonder about the damage they could do if they all had a full offseason to work with each other. Now, Mehta feels that the Jets are hurting their cause by not having a deal done with the veteran.
  • Recently, Decker expressed his desire to see Fitzpatrick back with the team ASAP. Marshall, meanwhile, said that the team will “be OK” with Geno Smith, Bryce Petty, and Hackenberg.

Extra Points: Gailey, Chargers, Steelers, Gordon

Chan Gailey had been out of the NFL for two seasons when newly-hired Jets coach Todd Bowles offered him the offensive coordinator gig. At 63-year-olds, Gailey didn’t even hesitate to accept the job. Why didn’t he need time to consider the position?

“There’s one big reason, and it’s a personal reason,” Gailey told ESPN.com’s Rich Cimini. “I want to win a championship.”

After nearly two decades in the league and four Super Bowl appearances (three with the Broncos, one with the Steelers), Gailey had yet to win a championship.

Let’s take a look at some more assorted notes from around the league as we wrap up this Wednesday evening…

  • In an interesting piece for FOX Sports, Alex Marvez explores why – unlike their offensive and defensive counterparts – special teams coordinators hardly ever receive consideration for NFL head coaching jobs.
  • Former Chargers safety Jimmy Wilson was the notable name to clear waivers today, tweets Michael Gehlken the San Diego Union-Tribune. The 29-year-old is now free to sign anywhere.
  • Cornerback Stanley Jean-Baptiste worked out for the Steelers today, reports ESPN.com’s Adam Schefter (via Twitter). The 25-year-old was the Saints’ second-round pick in 2014.
  • Embattled Browns wideout Josh Gordon is eligible to apply for reinstatement on February 3rd, and Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com reports (via Twitter) that the receiver has been doing “outstanding” during his yearlong suspension.

Luke Adams contributed to this post.

AFC Rumors: Jets, Ravens, Workouts

Despite signing a four-year, $16MM extension last October, Jeremy Kerley played just one snap for the Jets in Week 1 and doesn’t appear to have a role in Chan Gailey‘s offense. Gailey prefers receivers play different positions. Kerley’s skill set is mostly limited to slot work, putting his future with the team in doubt, according to Dom Cosentino of NJ.com. Kerley, who established career highs with 56 catches for 827 yards in 2012, missed time this summer with an Achilles injury and a concussion, leading to being phased out of the offense thus far. “We started molding [the offense] around other things, and we are where we are,” Gailey told media. Eric Decker played 43 snaps in the slot last week.

Here are some other items emerging from other AFC locales.

  • With Eugene Monroe set to miss tomorrow’s Ravens-Raiders game due to a concussion sustained in the first half of Week 1, Jamison Hensley of ESPN.com posits the Ravens are not receiving good value from Monroe after he signed a five-year, $37.5MM deal last season. Monroe’s latest absence will mark the sixth time the Baltimore left tackle’s missed a game since signing that extension, and after quality seasons prior to last, Monroe graded out as Pro Football Focus’ 63rd-ranked tackle last year.
  • The Colts worked out cornerback Brandon Dixon, Bill Bentley and Robert McClain, according to Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle (on Twitter) the latter of the trio having 17 career starts to his credit. The Patriots cut the 27-year-old McClain earlier this month after signing the ex-Falcon this offseason. A former Division II All-American and twin brother of Saints cornerback Brian Dixon, Brandon Dixon played 14 games last season for the Buccaneers. Bentley, a 2012 third-rounder, started eight games for the Lions in 2012-13 but ended up on injured reserve last season after playing in just one game.
  • The Browns worked out linebacker Jayson DiManche, and defensive ends Cam Johnson and Nordly Capi, Wilson tweets. DiManche played in 28 games for the Bengals the past two seasons, with Johnson suiting up in 13 for the 49ers and Colts in the past three.
  • In addition to trying out Bernard Pollard on Friday, the Raiders also brought in free safeties Durrell Eskridge and Ryan Murphy for auditions, notes Wilson (on Twitter).

Jets Hire Chan Gailey As OC

At long last, it’s a done deal. The Jets announced tonight that they have hired former Bills head coach Chan Gailey as their new offensive coordinator.

Gailey has been linked to the Jets’ offensive coordinator opening ever since the hiring of Todd Bowles as head coach. However, there have been some bumps in the road in recent weeks. The two sides have ostensibly been haggling over details while other clubs reportedly got in the mix for the veteran coach. Gailey, according to a report from Brian Costello of the New York Post over the weekend, had interest from three other clubs. Ultimately, however, the Jets got Gailey, who was Bowles’ top choice for the gig.

Gailey, who was the head coach for both the Bills and Cowboys, has previously served as an offensive coordinator for the Broncos (1989-’90), Steelers (1997), Dolphins (2000-’01) and Chiefs (2008).

Meanwhile, the Jets are expected to finalize their deal with Kacy Rodgers, despite the starts and stops in recent weeks, according to Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald (on Twitter). Rodgers, 45, has worked as an NFL assistant since 2003, and his time in Miami overlapped with Bowles’ from 2008-11. He’ll replace Dennis Thurman, who followed ex-Jets coach Rex Ryan to Buffalo.

Coach Rumors: Gailey, Bills, 49ers, Cardinals

It has been presumed that the Jets would hire Chan Gailey to become the team’s offensive coordinator, but it may not be a done deal, writes Brian Costello of the New York Post. Costello writes that Gailey has drawn interest from three other teams, and that an agreement with the Jets is far from a lock.

  • As the Jets have cooled on Gailey, they have reached out to other potential candidates for their offensive coordinator opening, reports Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports (via Twitter).
  • The 49ers have denied the Bills permission to interview Ronald Curry for an opportunity to join Greg Roman’s staff in Buffalo, reports Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com (via Twitter).
  • The Bears wanted to consider Broncos wide receivers coach Tyke Tolbert for the same position on their staff, but the Broncos have denied them permission, reports Michael C. Wright of ESPN.com (via Twitter).
  • The Cardinals have expressed interest in Falcons defensive coordinator Mike Nolan to replace Todd Bowles as their own defensive coordinator, reports Josh Weinfuss of ESPN.com. Nolan’s defenses with the Falcons have been underwhelming, and his stint as 49ers head coach was equally unsuccessful.
  • With the Cardinals considering options at defensive coordinator, Jim Wyatt of the Tennesseean notes that former Steelers defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau is in the mix as a senior assistant (via Twitter). Wyatt still believes LeBeau could land with the Titans (via Twitter).
  • 49ers assistant coach Eric Mangini will interview with the Raiders in pursuit of their defensive coordinator job, reports Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (via Twitter).
  • While Mangini is moving closer to the Oakland, former Raiders defensive coordinator Jason Tarver is still expected to rejoin the 49ers, reports Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle (via Twitter).
  • Former Cardinals and Chiefs defensive coordinator Clancy Pendergast interviewed to be the defensive coordinator in Washington, reports John Keim of ESPN.com.
  • The Bears have hired former Broncos assistant coach Jeff Rodgers as their special teams coordinator, reports Adam Jahns of the Chicago Sun-Times (via Twitter).