NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — In the end, possibly waiting another three weeks to hire a head coach was something that the Jets felt was too risky.
So instead of biding their time for Seattle defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, the leading candidate for several open NFL jobs, the Jets went the safe route and reportedly reached an agreement with Arizona defensive coordinator Todd Bowles, an equally attractive candidate.READ MORE: Wild Roll To Win Against Devils
The advantage of hiring Bowles now is he still has plenty of time to assemble a staff. There are still a handful of head coaching openings in the NFL and very soon quality coordinators and position coaches will be hard to find.
Quinn had been interviewed and was likely going to be granted a second interview as early as this weekend, but since the Seahawks’ season may not end any time soon the Jets might have had to wait until after the Super Bowl on Feb. 1 to make an offer, per league rules. It’s very possible if the Jets had waited Quinn would have had a difficult time finding the best possible assistants, and there was always the chance that another team could swoop in with a better offer.
Bowles, 51, a native of Elizabeth, New Jersey, was the Jets’ defensive backs coach back in 2000. He has since worked for five different teams, including the last two seasons in his current position with the Cardinals. He was a finalist for at least one other head coaching job.
Under Bowles’ watch, the Cardinals had the fifth-best scoring defense in the NFL this season. According to the NFL Network, Bowles won the Jets over with his leadership, ability to relate to players and his flexibility with personnel.READ MORE: DeRozan, LaVine Help Bulls Hang On To Beat Knicks
Several reports have stated Bowles will bring in former Buffalo and Dallas head coach Chan Gailey as offensive coordinator. Gailey held that position with Pittsburgh in 1996-97, Miami in 2000-01 and Kansas City in 2008.
Bowles played for eight years in the NFL, mostly with Washington and was a starting safety on the Redskins’ Super Bowl champion team following the 1987 season.
After firing head coach Rex Ryan and GM John Idzik on Dec. 29, the Jets embarked on an exhaustive search to fill both vacancies. In their quest to replace Ryan, owner Woody Johnson and consultants Charley Casserly and Ron Wolf spoke to San Diego offensive coordinator Frank Reich, former Buffalo head coach Doug Marrone, Seattle assistant head coach/offensive line coach Tom Cable and a few others in addition to Bowles and Quinn.
Earlier Tuesday the Jets announced the hiring of former Houston director of college scouting Mike Maccagnan as their new GM. He was the only one of the seven known candidates to be invited back for a second interview.
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