The New York Jets will hire Adam Gase as their new head coach, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports. Gase, 40, is the franchise’s first head coach with an offensive background since Rich Kotite in 1995 and the first with previous head-coach experience since Bill Parcells replaced Kotite in 1997.
Gase was fired by the Dolphins last week after three seasons with a 23-25 mark, plus one wild-card appearance, following his 10-6 debut in 2016. It's worth noting Gase's Dolphins went 5-1 against the Jets during that span. His other known interviews included the Green Bay Packers, Cleveland Browns and Arizona Cardinals.
The Jets interviewed a host of candidates to replace Todd Bowles, who was fired on “Black Monday,” following four seasons. They dabbled with college coaches — including Baylor’s Matt Rhule, who reportedly wasn't on board with the front office selecting his staff, and Kliff Kingsbury, the former Texas Tech coach who some thought was the apple of the Jets’ eye, before he chose the Arizona Cardinals. The Jets spoke with retreads Mike McCarthy, formerly of the Packers, and ex-Lions and Colts coach Jim Caldwell. And they also interviewed potential first-timers, including Tampa Bay OC Todd Monken and Kansas City OC Eric Bienemy.
Ultimately, though, Jets CEO Christopher Johnson and GM Mike Maccagnan settled on Gase, who reportedly received a strong endorsement from Peyton Manning on Tuesday night. Gase was Manning’s QB coach with the Denver Broncos in 2012 — one year after coaching Tim Tebow — and served as offensive coordinator the following two seasons, when the Broncos had the NFL’s highest-scoring offense.
The Gase-Maccagnan relationship figures to be an important one after Maccagnan avoided a pink slip despite sharing plenty of culpability in the franchise's recent stumbles. So too does Gase's hiring of a defensive coordinator, and reports indicate he could again sync up with Vance Joseph, who served in the same role in Gase's first season with the Dolphins prior to his failed head-coaching stint in Denver.
But Gase’s biggest charge — beyond guiding the Jets back to the playoffs for the first time in a decade — is the development of top pick Sam Darnold, who finished a somewhat turbulent rookie season on a high note. In addition to a young potential franchise quarterback, the Jets are flush with cap space and have the third overall pick for a second consecutive offseason.
Gase’s tenure in Miami, after a promising debut that included the Dolphins rallying behind backup Matt Moore following Ryan Tannehill’s knee injury to make the playoffs, was marred both by dysfunction and QB instability. The Jets are no strangers to the former, and it’ll be interesting to see what Gase learned from his time in Miami, much of which he spent attempting to change the culture in a locker room that some observers still thought he lost late last season.
But the Jets expect the presence of Darnold, and now Gase, will help ensure the franchise’s perpetual QB flux is a thing of the past. Gase arrived in Miami on the heels of helping Jay Cutler to a career year in their one season together in Chicago with a reputation as an up-and-coming offensive innovator and strategist. The Jets need a lot of personnel upgrades around Darnold, but he's the most impressive young pupil with whom Gase has been tasked to develop.