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Jets Offseason: Potential Special Teams Coordinator Candidates

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Jim O'Connor-USA TODAY Sports

While nobody can identify the next special teams coordinator of the Jets after the firing of Bobby April, there are some names to remember. Relationships help people get jobs in the NFL. April worked with Todd Bowles on the Eagles in 2012. Who are some coaches with special teams experience who Bowles knows?

Keith Armstrong

Current Job: Falcons Special Teams Coordinator

Ties to Bowles: College Teammate at Temple

Armstrong is a guy who has gotten some head coaching buzz in recent years. He survived the transition from Mike Smith to Dan Quinn in Atlanta. He also has run the special teams for the Bears and the Dolphins. Bowles reportedly tried to hire him a year ago, but the Falcons would not let Armstrong go.

This might be an indication Armstrong is a longshot.

Anthony Blevins

Current Job: Cardinals Special Teams Assistant

Ties to Bowles: Worked together with Cardinals in 2013 and 2014

Blevins worked his way up the coaching ranks, starting in the NFL's summer minority internship program. He went on to coach at Tennessee State and his alma mater UAB before the Cardinals hired him in 2013. He is kind of a blank slate. If the Jets went this route, it would be an indication Bowles saw something in Arizona that makes him think Blevins could be a young coaching star in the making.

Dave Fipp

Current Job: Eagles Special Teams Coordinator

Ties to Bowles: Worked together with Dolphins in 2011 where Fipp served under Bowles after Bowles was promoted to interim head coach

Ironically, Fipp took over for April as the head special teams guy with the Eagles. For what it is worth, Football Outsiders has Philadelphia's special teams among the league's best in DVOA the last two seasons. With the coaching change in Philly, Fipp might be available.

Darren Rizzi

Current Job: Dolphins Special Teams Coordinator

Ties to Bowles: Worked together with Dolphins in 2010 and 2011; worked under Bowles in 2011 after Bowles was promoted to interim head coach

Rizzi ran the special teams in Miami when Bowles was there, and Fipp was an assistant. The Dolphins are another team in the middle of a coaching change so Rizzi might be available. He was regarded highly enough in Miami to earn the title of assistant head coach.

Duce Staley

Current Job: Eagles Running Backs Coach

Ties to Bowles: Worked together with Eagles in 2012

Staley eventually became Philadelphia's running backs coach, but he did work as a special teams quality control coach when he and Bowles were together. This one seems like a longshot. Would Staley want to go back to special teams? His job situation is up in the air with the coaching change in Philly, but he does have ties to that organization as a player. They also thought enough of him to interview him for the head coaching job. These suggest he might survive the coaching change. I would be very surprised if this was the way the Jets went.

Mike Westhoff

Current Job: Media Analyst

Ties to Bowles: None that are evident

This is a longshot. Westhoff has said he doesn't want to coach again. You still have to call him and make him a big offer, though. Right? The legend still follows the Jets closely and has probably forgotten more than most coaches will ever know about special teams.