The new head coach of the New York Jets, Adam Gase, will meet the media today around 2:00 p.m. Eastern.
These press conferences are usually a lot of fluff. You don’t hear much substance as the new coach offers his vision for the franchise. It’s really tough to not do well at these events, and they typically leave fans feeling excited about the future of the franchise. That will help Gase, whose hiring was divisive.
In spite of this, there are a few substantive points we might hear slip out today. Here are five things I will be interested to hear.
What will Gase’s role in the offense be?
Gase’s past work and early rumors have suggested he will take a very hands on role with the offense and call the plays. Is he open to other arrangements if the right person comes along. Would he be willing to go outside his comfort zone and hire a big offensive mind to collaborate with? If the right candidate came along, would he theoretically be willing to delegate playcalling responsibilities or even hand over his offense to focus on some of the big picture head coach stuff he struggled with in Miami?
What is Gase’s vision for the defense?
Again we have some early rumors about the Jets targeting Gregg Williams for the defensive coordinator job, but nothing is confirmed.
Even though Gase comes from the offensive side of the ball, he is responsible for the entire team. The coordinator he hires will run the day to day implementation and game planning, but Gase has the vision for what he wants.
Does he want a high-risk attacking type defense that will force turnovers and three and outs to help his offense win the field position game? Does he want a bend but don’t break type defense that will keep the other team’s point total low?
Does he want a defense built around undervalued positions like off ball linebackers and two gap defensive linemen? This would allow the Jets to use more cap space on offensive playmakers. Or does he want a defense loaded with stars because he believes his scheme on offense can work with cheaper, less talented players?
Does Gase have autonomy over the coaching staff?
It can be really important for a head coach to have full control over the staff that reports to him. One of the other candidates, Matt Rhule, lost interest in the job because the Jets wouldn’t give him autonomy. There have also been a few rumblings that Mike McCarthy lost interest in the job in part because of how the Jets were pressing him for his list of assistants.
Nobody will say outright that the front office has sway in assistant hires. But if the question is asked, and we are given anything less than a definitive statement that Gase has total control, it will be a dead giveaway.
What has Gase learned from his failed tenure in Miami?
Gase failed in his first NFL head coaching job. A lot of coaches who failed in their first job went on to have success in future stops.
Doing so requires self-reflection. Gase has only gotten a few weeks of distance from the Miami experience, but it will be interesting to hear what regrets he has and what he will do differently this time around.
How quickly will the Jets turn this around?
I’m not expecting any Rex Ryan definitive guarantees, but the way Gase and the rest of management describe the situation will speak volumes. Are the expectations to get to the Playoffs next year, or is this viewed as part of a longer term build?
Based on a number of circumstances, I think it’s tough for the team to ask for any more patience.