Fans of the New York Jets might not be too thrilled at Wednesday’s report that Todd Bowles is likely to return in 2017 as head coach but the pulse of the locker room is seemingly on-board.
Following a 10-6 season a year ago and the chance to make the playoffs as late as Week 17, the Jets have been on a precarious and precipitous decline ever since. A 4-11 record in 2016 has many Jets fans heading into the season finale dejected and wanting Bowles to be shoved out the door but a report this week from legendary New York Daily News reporter Gary Myers, who has impeccable sources, says that Bowles will likely return for a third year as head coach of the Jets.
Jets players seem fine with the decision.
“We had heard, read some of that stuff over the past couple of days. I think everyone is pretty much alright with the idea and excited about it,” one player told Metro, speaking on the condition of anonymity. The player was called on Wednesday night but didn’t want to be quoted as nothing has been made official about the status of Bowles for 2017.
“I think coach Bowles generates a lot of respect. He’s the same coach as last year. I’ve played for a lot of coaches, had a coaching change in college. He’s a great coach. I don’t think the guys have quit on him at all and from the guys I’ve talked to, no one seemed upset about the news. We definitely talked about it a little but I think everyone is waiting for it to be real. No one is upset though.”
As for what went wrong this year, the player didn’t want to comment, just saying that “some guys need to step up if we are going to take a step [forward] in ’17.”
Earlier in his career, Bowles was interim head coach of the Miami Dolphins where he posted a 3-1 record. He is currently 14-17 with the Jets as he looks to close out his second season with the team and potentially head into a third offseason in New York.
“He’s a good man. He’s there for his players. He’s tough on us,” the player said. “I know you guys [in the media, fans] get on him because he isn’t a big personality. He’s quiet at times but he’s focused. There’s a lot of respect for him among the guys. This year was tough but if I’m back here next year, I’m excited to play for coach Bowles again.”