Saleh Sensation: The Jets Finally Got It Right

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Robert Saleh agrees to a 5-year deal with the New York Jets to become the new head coach.

Nick Holt, Editor-in-Chief

Last night at 10:10 p.m., Josina Anderson of ESPN reported that General Manager Joe Douglas had met an agreement with Robert Saleh to be the new Head Coach of the New York Jets.  After two interviews with the team, Saleh landed in Florham Park with a 5-Year deal with the team, making him the first Muslim-American Head Coach in NFL history.

Saleh becomes the 20th coach in the team’s history, taking over from the recently fired Adam Gase.  A complete 360 for a team who has struggled to find the right guy after Rex Ryan was fired in 2014 after six seasons with the team.

Coming from San Francisco, Saleh is an intense, defense first guy, who shows visible passion on the sideline, and I think it’s a perfect fit for the New York Jets.  This team desperately needs leadership and a CEO type personality on the sideline.  The last time the franchise has had success was with Rex Ryan, a guy who cared, looked like he cared on the sideline and showed his emotion.  In that account, Saleh is similar, but I wouldn’t feel comfortable comparing the two.  Saleh is an elite coach, on top of having a fantastic sideline personality.

Since Saleh was given the defensive coordinator job at San Francisco in 2017, the 49ers are ranked 4th in YPG (Yards Per Game), 10th in third down percentage, and 9th in defensive efficiency (Rich Cimini, ESPN).  Now, Saleh will take over as the Head Coach of the New York Jets, and if there was a man to turn a defense from decent to elite, Saleh is the guy.

Along with Saleh is Mike LaFleur, brother of Matt LaFleur, Head Coach of the Green Bay Packers.  Saleh was Matt’s best man at his wedding, and will now be taking his brother, Mike, with him to Florham Park.  Well respected across the league, Mike LaFleur had the job of Passing Game Coordinator in San Francisco, and now has the opportunity to run a full offense as the Offensive Coordinator for the Jets.  LaFleur is a big advocate of using the play action pass in their offense, so look to the Jets taking more of a run-first approach this season, potentially acquiring Alabama’s NaJee Harris in the draft, or offering Colts’ RB Marlon Mack in free agency.

It’s all about change with Saleh, a complete make over inside and out with the team.  A perfect hire for the Jets, who may have just created the best GM and Coach duo in the NFL.  The Jets have a real chance to finally make themselves an attractive destination for players, and a chance to start winning in the NFL.  It’s time to be excited as a Jets fan, this offseason could be the biggest one in franchise history.