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Todd Bowles pays the price for a Jets house divided


Gas2No99

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Todd Bowles pays the price for a Jets house divided

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Pete Carroll couldn't win here. Bill Belichick didn't even want to try. Herm Edwards restored pride in the franchise, then got himself traded. Eric Mangini was the "Man-genius," which landed him a cameo on "The Sopranos" -- and then he got whacked in the middle of the night by his best friend, former general manager Mike Tannenbaum. Rex Ryan almost made the Super Bowl -- twice! -- but his winning touch disappeared faster than his waistline.

And now there's another coach on the New York Jets' scrap heap -- Todd Bowles, who was fired Sunday night after another terrible season. He was a solid hire in 2015, a smart defensive coach with the right pedigree, but he imploded like no Jets coach since Rich Kotite in the mid-1990s. Bowles' final record: 24-40. The man lost 21 of his last 27 games. It's indefensible.

What is it with the Jets? They take promising football coaches, put them into a vice and use the power of a half-century of futility to squeeze the life and smarts out of them. It's one of the toughest jobs in sports, so daunting that it scared away Belichick. In retrospect, his first "genius" move was fleeing this wayward franchise, which has spent decade after decade searching for that elusive trifecta -- sound ownership, management and coaching.

The Jets haven't reached a Super Bowl in 50 years. Only the Detroit Lions have a longer continuous run of futility. That doesn't happen by accident.

For the love of Pete (Carroll), the Jets should use their latest failure -- and those who preceded Bowles -- to help them in their coaching search. It will take a special coach and person to empty the skeletons out of the closest. What they really need is a Bill Parcells-like persona who can shop for the groceries, cook the meals and rule the kitchen with the confidence of Gordon Ramsay. Unfortunately, Parcells is 77 and there are no young and available Tunas on the NFL horizon.

They need someone with a strong personality. A big part of this job -- any head-coaching job, for that matter -- is presentation. A coach has to sell himself and his program to the public, and that wasn't one of Bowles' strengths. He could be engaging away from the cameras and microphones, but he never let that side show in public. He was nothing like his mentors, Bruce Arians and Parcells, meaning he said little and showed no emotion. The job demands an "it" factor, especially in a market such as New York. They need a culture-changing presence, someone who isn't intimidated by the Super Bowl drought and the stigma attached to it.

They need an offensive-minded coach. Enough with the defensive coaches, already. The last head coach with an offense background was Kotite, and he went 4-28 in two seasons. He was followed by Parcells, a defensive guy who brought a CEO-type quality to the job. After him, they hired the same guy over and over -- five defensive assistants with no NFL head-coaching experience.

Now, more than ever, the position screams for offense. The NFL is an offense-driven league, and the Jets have a young quarterback, in Sam Darnold, who needs to be developed by a coach who sees the game from that side of the ball. One of Bowles' shortcomings was that he never figured out how to run an offense. He went through three offensive coordinators and five quarterbacks in four years, a lack of continuity that stunted the growth of the whole team.

It wasn't all his fault because it was hard to attract top-flight coordinators without a promising quarterback (pre-Darnold), but which brings us back to the earlier premise: Coaches can't succeed unless management supplies talent, and this is a front office that once believed Christian Hackenberg was a legitimate prospect when the rest of the league knew otherwise. Bowles recognized Hackenberg couldn't play, the reason why he famously kept him on the bench even when the front office was pushing for the kid to play at the end of the 2017 season.

They also need to hire a compatible coach-GM tandem. Ownership decided to keep general manager Mike Maccagnan, essentially blaming Bowles for the disaster. They were hired on the same day in 2015, presenting a united front as a couple of Jersey guys with similar football philosophy. In reality they were strangers, joined together in an arranged marriage. That almost never works.

They had some good moments (remember the almost-playoff run in 2015?), but they grew distant this season, sources said.

Bowles felt he didn't have the roster to win, and it bothered him when Maccagnan stood pat at the trading deadline, according to sources. It also chafed some people in the organization when Maccagnan, in his midseason media availability, waxed optimistically about the future, promising to be active in 2019 free agency. Some interpreted that as him kissing off the 2018 season and selling his rebuilding plan in an attempt at self-preservation.

At the same time, Bowles' inability to close out games infuriated factions in the organization. The Jets went 1-6 in games decided by eight or fewer points, often imploding in spectacular fashion. It prompted some at One Jets Drive to wonder: If the team was talent-poor, as many outside the building suggested, how come it was able to compete for three-plus quarters before unraveling? They put that on Bowles and the coaching staff, which was slow with in-game adjustments.

 

Truth be told, there was a disconnect between the coaching staff and the personnel department. One source said there were times when the coaches didn't know when players were being elevated to the 53-man roster. This wasn't as toxic as the ill-fated Ryan-John Idzik pairing in 2013-2014 -- another shotgun marriage that went bad -- but communication was an issue.

One time, Bowles found out from a reporter in a news conference the team had traded for cornerback Rashard Robinson. In some ways it summarized the Bowles-Maccagnan relationship. Not only did it turn out to be a bad trade, but it showed the coaches and personnel department weren't always in lockstep.

Now there's a new coaching search, another opportunity for this moribund franchise to change direction. Will the leaders get it right or will they continue to sabotage themselves by making the same mistakes and expecting a better result? That, as you know, is the definition of insanity.

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Jets fire coach Bowles after third losing season

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FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- For the second time in four years, the New York Jets are in the market for a head coach.

Todd Bowles, who presided over one of the worst three-year stretches in franchise history, was fired Sunday evening in a long-anticipated move.

Ownership decided against a complete overhaul, opting to retain embattled general manager Mike Maccagnan, who was hired the same day as Bowles in 2015.

Maccagnan and Bowles were thought to be a tandem -- their contracts run concurrently -- but Maccagnan was spared, in part, because he flipped the roster in a massive rebuild and acquired promising quarterback Sam Darnold.

Maccagnan will work closely with CEO Christopher Johnson in the search for Bowles' replacement, the team said.

"I would like to thank Coach Bowles for his dedication to the New York Jets for the last four years," Johnson said in a statement. "After carefully evaluating the situation, I have concluded that this is the right direction for the organization to take. I would like to wish Todd, Taneka and their family only the best."

Essentially, ownership placed the blame on Bowles, who went 24-40 in four seasons, including 21 losses in his past 27 games. The Jets (4-12) were competitive in almost every game this season, but they sabotaged themselves with ill-timed penalties and late-game meltdowns.

This was the Jets' eighth straight year out of the playoffs, tied for the third-longest active streak in the NFL.

"We just haven't gotten it done," Bowles said last week. "We haven't been able to put it together."

The Jets probably will try to hire an offensive-minded coach who can help develop Darnold, who showed encouraging signs after a midseason slump. Their last head coach with an offensive background was Rich Kotite (1995-96).

In recent weeks, Bowles repeatedly declined to address his job security, but he had been telling friends that he expected to be fired. He is signed through 2020 after receiving a two-year extension at the end of last season.

Going into this season, Johnson refused to issue a playoff mandate, saying he would evaluate Bowles based on progress. Bowles was held to the same standard in 2017, the first year of a major roster overhaul, and he was widely praised for the way he handled a young team that lacked talent at most positions. The Jets finished 5-11, but it was good enough to land Bowles the extension.

Maccagnan received the same extension, fueling the perception he and Bowles were a permanent tandem.

 

The Jets got off to a 3-3 start, with Darnold flashing his potential, but the season unraveled with a six-game losing streak. The low point was a 41-10 home loss to the Buffalo Bills on Nov. 11 that preceded the bye week. Instead of firing Bowles during the break, ownership decided to ride it out until the end.

Until Sunday's 38-3 loss to the New England Patriots, Bowles got the team to play competitively in the final weeks, but the Jets blew fourth-quarter leads in three December losses. They squandered 16- and 15-point leads against the Tennessee Titans and Green Bay Packers, respectively.

Ultimately, it was the defense -- Bowles' bread and butter -- that doomed the Jets. That unit allowed 441 points, the second-highest total in franchise history for a 16-game season.

Bowles almost made the playoffs in his first season. Needing a win in the finale to clinch a wild-card spot, the Jets were upset by the Bills on the road 22-17. In a way, they never recovered, going 14-34 since.

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The Jets went 1-6 in games decided by eight or fewer points, often imploding in spectacular fashion. It prompted some at One Jets Drive to wonder: If the team was talent-poor, as many outside the building suggested, how come it was able to compete for three-plus quarters before unraveling? They put that on Bowles and the coaching staff, which was slow with in-game adjustments.

THIS

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1 hour ago, HessStation said:

It was/is a crack house that needed to be demolished and rebuilt from The sub basement up

How Mac isn’t blamed for this disconnect/pettiness also is insane to me. I realize it’s inconvenient to have to fire the regime and Bowles forced their hands but Mac did more than enough as well. This is such a strange situation.

The players probably have a really bad taste in their mouths and attitude towards Mac that will most likely carry over. This the stupidest moves that I’ve ever seen this team make at a crucial time when we have Sam. Only the Jets could f*ck up lucking into getting a QB like Sam. 

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7 minutes ago, Creepy Lurker said:

How Mac isn’t blamed for this disconnect/pettiness also is insane to me. . . . This is such a strange situation.

The players probably have a really bad taste in their mouths and attitude towards Mac that will most likely carry over. This the stupidest moves that I’ve ever seen this team make at a crucial time when we have Sam. Only the Jets could f*ck up lucking into getting a QB like Sam. 

Why would the players - who ALL ARE HERE B/C OF MAC: Drafted/signed to FA Contract - have a bad taste in their mouths??? The same Sam that Mac maneuvered to acquire for the team?

I"m not a Mac apologist, but I can't see players having gripes against the GM who brought them TO NYC to play for the Jets at INFLATED salaries - some yet to be merited - and put blame on him. Mac even DRAFTED the SS at #6 overall that CRITICIZED him to the media yesterday stating the team had no "dawgs nor players" and thus why some declare that Adams is either correct or an idiot. Yet Mac is the GM of the team that has no dawgs but DID draft Adams #6 overall. 

 

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1 minute ago, Gas2No99 said:

Why would the players - who ALL ARE HERE B/C OF MAC: Drafted/signed to FA Contract - have a bad taste in their mouths??? The same Sam that Mac maneuvered to acquire for the team?

I"m not a Mac apologist, but I can't see players having gripes against the GM who brought them TO NYC to play for the Jets at INFLATED salaries - some yet to be merited - and put blame on him. Mac even DRAFTED the SS at #6 overall that CRITICIZED him to the media yesterday stating the team had no "dawgs nor players" and thus why some declare that Adams is either correct or an idiot. Yet Mac is the GM of the team that has no dawgs but DID draft Adams #6 overall. 

 

I just have this weird feeling if blind loyalty to Todd (who absolutely did not deserve it) and more to the Mac-Bowles rift than we’ll ever know. That compounded with not getting a completely fresh start can leave things lingering. This is especially true if we have a bad offseason don’t get any/enough  “dawgs”. Everyone will jump down Mac’s throat hence the short leash issue that we wanted to avoid.

No one knows what will happen. I just feel like everything was toxic and needed to be blown up completely. What would you do if someone took a dump on your floor? You wouldn’t just spray febreze and leave the turd there to stink up again later. Sorry, I’ve lost my mind and my analogies are terrible. 

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18 minutes ago, Nixhead said:

Face it - they both sukkk at their Jobs. Just too much scrambling for a new head coach to be searching for a new GM also which would need to come first. 

They should have basically already had the GM hired.  Found their guy, negotiated the specifics and officially hired him this week.

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10 minutes ago, Creepy Lurker said:

I just have this weird feeling if blind loyalty to Todd (who absolutely did not deserve it) and more to the Mac-Bowles rift than we’ll ever know. That compounded with not getting a completely fresh start can leave things lingering. This is especially true if we have a bad offseason don’t get any/enough  “dawgs”. Everyone will jump down Mac’s throat hence the short leash issue that we wanted to avoid.

I think Mac IS on a short leash and Jamal Adams brought it to ownership's attention that the FO is also culpable for the lack of depth and talent in certain areas. Also seems like Mac can't gage on WHO to give Big $$$ contracts to WITHOUT that player being a locker-room cancer/problem: Mo Wilkerson, Revis, Trumaine Johnson - biggest signing bonuses in Jets' history, all team mal-contents w/"mental lapses." 

Mac will either hit or miss BADLY in 2019 and he AND his selected coach will be done by 2020. 

 

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No one knows what will happen. I just feel like everything was toxic and needed to be blown up completely. What would you do if someone took a dump on your floor? You wouldn’t just spray febreze and leave the turd there to stink up again later. Sorry, I’ve lost my mind and my analogies are terrible. 

No, I kick his ass for being an idiot and clean up the mess AS BEST as one can given the situation and resources at hand. It is bad analogy. Amputating a toe infected w/Gang Greene in order to save your foot & leg would have been a better example.

I actually have caught a drugged up hobo crapping on my building stoop once and physically kicked him off the steps and hosed the area with bleach and a hose. People never cease to disgust me. 

 

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Just now, Gas2No99 said:

I think Mac IS on a short leash and Jamal Adams brought it to ownership's attention that the FO is also culpable for the lack of depth and talent in certain areas. Also seems like Mac can't gage on WHO to give Big $$$ contracts to WITHOUT that player being a locker-room cancer/problem: Mo Wilkerson, Revis, Trumaine Johnson - biggest signing bonuses in Jets' history, all team mal-contents w/"mental lapses."

 

No, I kick his ass for being an idiot and clean up the mess AS BEST as one can given the situation and resources at hand. It is bad analogy. Amputating a toe infected w/Gang Greene in order to save your foot & leg would have been a better example.

I actually have caught a drugged up hobo crapping on my building stoop once and physically kicked him off the steps and hosed the area with bleach and a hose. People never cease to disgust me. 

 

I told you my analogies are way off. Plus, we are all infected with gang Greene from this team. 

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Could it be that Mac was retained as possibly and strictly only as a capologist for the next coach ? When Parcells came on board, they brought in Tanny to handle the cap and to do all the leg work that was needed to be done. Bill called the shots though. If someone like Harbaugh (just as an example),came on board with us, I don't see him having anything less than full control of all football operations. Mac would just be a bean counter and deal closer.

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2 minutes ago, FidelioJet said:

They should have basically already had the GM hired.  Found their guy, negotiated the specifics and officially hired him this week.

In a perfect world sure. But I know the Johnsons - they would have to hire a consultant to hire a GM and then hire a head coach. Would take months. 

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39 minutes ago, Creepy Lurker said:

How Mac isn’t blamed for this disconnect/pettiness also is insane to me. I realize it’s inconvenient to have to fire the regime and Bowles forced their hands but Mac did more than enough as well. This is such a strange situation.

The players probably have a really bad taste in their mouths and attitude towards Mac that will most likely carry over. This the stupidest moves that I’ve ever seen this team make at a crucial time when we have Sam. Only the Jets could f*ck up lucking into getting a QB like Sam. 

Who cares about the pettiness. We hired two guys who were clearly over promoted and are an organization run by owners who dont care all that much. Until someone is actually put in charge, like really put in charge, nothing will change. We're going to hire a coordinator and he'll again be on equal footing with Maccagnan. Responsibility, pay, etc. 

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21 minutes ago, Big Snell said:

Could it be that Mac was retained as possibly and strictly only as a capologist for the next coach ? When Parcells came on board, they brought in Tanny to handle the cap and to do all the leg work that was needed to be done. Bill called the shots though. If someone like Harbaugh (just as an example),came on board with us, I don't see him having anything less than full control of all football operations. Mac would just be a bean counter and deal closer.

Jacquie Davis is the BRAINS behind the contracts and their structures. She's the genius that gives the Jets the "out clause" after 2 years in every big Mac FA signing. 

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"Will the leaders get it right or will they continue to sabotage themselves by making the same mistakes and expecting a better result? That, as you know, is the definition of insanity."


can we all stop using this "definition of insanity" cliche?  Pleeeeeaaase.  The horse is dead.  Stop beating it.  The article was really spot on.  Then the "definition of insanity", thing.  It hit its peak like four years ago and it wasn't that good then.   But its been repeated ad nauseum by, like, everyone.  And each user thinks its incredibly smart and witty.  It was.  When the first writer said it.  Now its being repeated and repeated, with the same result...its a dead cliche.  Thanks.  I'll step down now.  Soap box is free, everybody!
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This pity party for Bowles by the media is just asinine.

I’m sure he’s a good guy, but that has dick to do with being a successful HC.

Belichick could very well feast upon puppies in his spare time, but there’s no denying that he’s an excellent coach.

Bowles is gone and he deserves to be gone. I would’ve kicked Macc’s ass out the door as well but it is what it is.

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1 hour ago, Big Snell said:

Could it be that Mac was retained as possibly and strictly only as a capologist for the next coach ? When Parcells came on board, they brought in Tanny to handle the cap and to do all the leg work that was needed to be done. Bill called the shots though. If someone like Harbaugh (just as an example),came on board with us, I don't see him having anything less than full control of all football operations. Mac would just be a bean counter and deal closer.

That's kind of the hope, but Mac has also sucked at contract negotiations so while it would be a slightly better situation, still not a good one.

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1 hour ago, Xtina said:

I guess that’s what you get when the coach doesn’t report to the GM. They have got to change that 

They would need to first fire Maccagnan in order to change that, so it's not happening.  There would be no worse decision than giving Maccagnan authority over anyone one.  His level of incompetence is unmatched.

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