The New York Jets will be firing head coach Adam Gase following Sunday’s Week 17 game against the New England Patriots, according to NFL’s Ian Rapoport. Gase has gone 9-22 in 31 games as Jets head coach.
Among the candidates who are slated to be considered are Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bienemy, Colts defensive coordinator Matt Eberflus, Ravens defensive coordinator Don “Wink” Martindale, Titans offensive coordinator Arthur Smith and Rams defensive coordinator Brandon Staley to college coaches such as Iowa State’s Matt Campbell, Michigan’s Jim Harbaugh and Florida’s Dan Mullen to everyone in between. [via NFL]
Gase’s lasting impact on the Jets’ franchise is most notable in the regression of quarterback Sam Darnold, who’s gone from being a no-brainer blue-chip prospect to someone who’s future is in already question. Despite still being just 23-years-old and never having the chance to develop under a competent coach in an offense with legitimate weapons, there’s speculation that the Jets will draft his successor in the upcoming NFL Draft, potentially in the form of Ohio State QB Justin Fields. Given the career resurrection Ryan Tannehill has experienced since parting ways with Gase (he led the NFL in passer rating in 2019 after years of toiling under Gase in Miami), it wouldn’t be even slightly surprising if something similar happened with Darnold should the Jets decide to move on.
The Gase era of New York Jets football was essentially over the day it began, as eyebrows were immediately raised following his literally eye-popping introductory press conference. In fact, his introduction to the Jets’ fan base was so bizarre that ESPN personality Stephen A. Smith has since jokingly (?) wondered whether he was under the influence of drugs.
While he made it to a second season as HC of the NYJ, Gase’s first season was certainly far from inspiring, as the Jets’ began the 2019 season with a 1–7 record, marking their worst start in 12 years.
As for where Gase’s legacy in the tapestry of New York City sports lies, it’s in the same neighborhood of the infamous Rich Kotite, who’s widely regarded to be the most hated New York Jets head coach of all-time after compiling a 4-28 record from 1995 to 1996.
The Jets’ next head coaching hire will define their next decade (they didn’t make a single playoff appearance from 2011-2020), as he will ultimately decide who the franchise’s next quarterback will be, whether that’s Darnold, Fields, BYU QB Zach Wilson, or otherwise.