By Jeff Moeller The New York Extra/TheNYExtra.com
Joe Douglas did the shopping. Now Adam Gase has to do the cooking. It is time to set the table for the 2020 season.
The Douglas-Gase era officially will begin their first full year together in late July when the Jets hopefully will open training camp. Last July, Douglas was hired as the new Jets GM, and many saw it as a power move by Gase to reunite with his former associate and slash the reign of former GM Mike Maccagnan.
The Maccagnan-Todd Bowles era had a few productive years, and Maccagnan had an open checkbook a year ago. He filled some of the open spots in the Jets’ cupboard. Through it all, the duo was given a chance by Jets’ ownership.
In July, owner Christopher Johnson has to give the Douglas-Gase combo a long leash. Gase came under fire last season. Give him an opportunity to develop the team. Douglas already has developed a pedigree through his front office stops in Baltimore and Philadelphia. Jets’ fans expected Thomas to make
When Gase was hired last January, he was generally seen as a consolation prize after a deal for former Packers’ and current Cowboys’ coach and fan favorite Mike McCarthy apparently fell through. Current Carolina head coach Matt Rhule was the hot college commodity, but reports were mixed whether he was offered the job.
Gase took over with a 23-25 overall record in three seasons in Miami, the previous two seasons being losing campaigns after a 10-7 playoff season in his debut. He had a falling out with ownership over team decisions.
It seemed to follow him with the Jets, as he was the de facto GM under Johnson that ended Maccagnan’s run. The initial reaction to Thomas’ hire was linked to Gase. However, the Jets upper echelon hierarchy was apparently united for the first time in a while. It wasn’t the situation where Maccagnan and Bowles separately reported to Johnson.
Gase arrived as the quarterback whisper from his time as an assistant and was handed promising Sam Darnold. But he didn’t have the luxury of Darnold for full season as well as stud linebacker CJ Mosley and others on the other side of the ball. Yet, Gase drew the ire of critics for being too passive despite a 6-2 slate in the second half of an overall 7-9 season.
One major issue was his handling of Le‘Veon Bell, who also has to prove that he is still an elite back. Rumblings surfaced of a rift between the two, and Gase has been a pass first/run second coach. Still, Gase will have to find a way to properly get the most mileage out of Bell.
Clean the slate for Thomas and Gase for 2020. Expectations have a louder blip for this fall, but let both of them get further settled in the ride before we cast any more aspersions.