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Todd Bowles is On Shaky Ground

ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported Jets owner Woody Johnson is getting impatient about the Jets last night on ESPN’s Monday Night Countdown.
Watching Johnson and Jets general manager Mike Maccagnan in the Cardinals suite on television, they weren’t happy with what took place in last night’s game.

For the second straight week, the Jets were outplayed, outworked and outcoached in their 28-3 loss to the Cardinals at University of Phoenix Stadium. This does not reflect well on second-year Jets head coach Todd Bowles.

Bowles could be coaching for his job the rest of the season. There’s no way Johnson is going to tolerate a terrible season after expecting this team to be in the playoffs this season.

Look, the first five of the Jets’ six games was going to be daunting. The Jets were playing teams that made the postseason last year. With that said, there’s no excuse to be listless every game. That is what’s bothering Johnson right now.

For all the talk about the schedule, the Jets could have won some games if they were coached properly and played better. They could have beaten the Bengals and Seahawks at home. They could have been a .500 team at best and make hay against losing teams in the next few weeks.
Who knows if the Jets can beat awful teams right now?

This is where Bowles has to do whatever it takes to coach next year. His team has to beat bad teams on the schedule. Losing to them will hurt his chances to come back next season. He knows this as much as anyone.

It does not help his cause when Rex Ryan’s Bills are playing much better at 4-2. Johnson adores Ryan, and he did not want to fire his head coach two years ago. He only did it so he can get a general manager in place. For every Jets loss and Bills win, the Jets owner has to be feeling buyer’s remorse.

Ryan might as well be Johnson’s Bill Belichick. In his mind, the Bills coach was the best Jets coach ever for leading his team to two AFC Championship Game appearances despite losing both games. He gave that team an identity. He even made them relevant in this town.
Bowles does not have that street cred with the Jets owner. Not when his team failed to make the playoffs last year. Not when the team is getting worse every week.

The current Jets head coach has to prove his bosses that he can lead them moving forward. It starts with a win against the Ravens Sunday. This is where he has to coach his team to a victory. He has to follow that up by beating the awful teams in the next few weeks.
If the Jets go 1-10, he may have sealed his fate as coach.

Johnson is in no mood to be patient. Not when the Jets have missed the playoffs the last four years. Not when Jets fans are getting fed up. Not when the team is going nowhere fast. Quite frankly, no one can blame him.

Ask former Jets coach Eric Mangini how tough Johnson can be as a boss. From watching Bowles this season, he looks like he is in over his head. He has that clueless look on the sidelines. He can’t seem to lead when the going gets tough.

The Jets haven’t responded to him this year. When the other team is leading, the Jets seem to belly up rather than respond. The Jets approached last night’s game as if this was a scrimmage game. Tackling was optional. Cardinals running back David Johnson scored three touchdowns in that game. It was like he had an EZ-pass to the end zone.

It was hard to say anyone on the Jets played hard. They should not even get paid after this performance. Bowles tried a quarterback change to get his team fired up. After throwing several completions, Geno Smith threw that interception, and that was it. There was a reason the Jets coach did not insert Smith early on. He knows his backup quarterback won’t do much for him.

Bowles will stay with Fitzpatrick for awhile. He has no choice. With his job hanging in the balance, the Jets coach needs his struggling quarterback to come through. He can’t rely on Smith to save him since the backup quarterback stinks. He can’t rely on Bryce Petty since he is an unknown.

It will be interesting how this season goes now.

It’s a lost cause for the Jets, but for Bowles, these games count since it’s a referendum for his job security.

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