FootballRegional Sports

Hard part comes now for Saleh after sounding good

The Jets introduced Robert Saleh as their 20th head coach in franchise history on a Zoom call Thursday afternoon, and he showed why Jets general manager Joe Douglas and Jets CEO Chris Johnson couldn’t wait to hire him right away.

He sounded the part of a head coach by being holistic and talking about the process. He mentioned collaboration, teamwork and family in talking about what he would bring as a Jets head coach. He talked about the Jets doing the little things that will win games such as feeling good about themselves and expecting to play and practice as winners.

Saleh knew what he was talking about, and he was direct about what he expects out of his team. He mentioned the Jets going to be “All Gas No Brake” as in they are going to be a high-energy team.

Most of all, he offered more substance than style. He did not behave like a fool like Rex Ryan did when he was introduced as the Jets head coach, and he sure did not put on a carnival act like Lions head coach Dan Campbell did in his introductory press conference. Think of him as Islanders head coach Barry Trotz in a sense he sounded secure, confident and intelligent. He came off as a head coach that knows what he wants to do.

He came off as refreshing after listening to Todd Bowles and Adam Gase offered no answers or no clue as to why things went bad for the Jets during their ill-fated tenure. Jets fans love to see a head coach that knows the pulse of the team, and media members love to get insights and direct answers from the head coach rather than dancing around the question or offering a tired cliche. Saleh offered that, and that’s why he won the press conference and why he got the job.

If nothing else, Saleh inspired hope by detailing his plan on how his team would go about their business from the start of training camp to the final game of the season.

This does not mean Saleh has all the answers. He did not talk about whether or not Sam Darnold will be the starting quarterback because he does not know what to make of him. Plus, he talked about this team having so much work to do.

He expressed that he was not scared about being the Jets head coach. He embraces it. He talked about making the Jets fans proud as his goal. The losing, catastrophe and bad luck did not deter him from taking this job. He came off so genuine about why he wanted to coach the Jets.

Eric Mangini, Rex Ryan, Todd Bowles and Adam Gase had good intentions as Jets head coach, but they appeared insecure or not really sure of themselves on why they wanted to be Jets head coach or if they really thought they were good enough to be NFL head coaches.

With Ryan, it was all bluster at best. With Mangini, Bowles and Gase, they came off as guys who said the right things but they really were not sure of what they were talking about.

We won’t really know how good Saleh is until he coaches many games. But say this about him: He passed the eye test of what a head coach should be about.

The onus is on Douglas to get him playmakers on defense and offense to put him in a position to succeed. Saleh can only do so much as a head coach. Football comes down to Xs and Os, but it also needs Jimmys and Joes to execute X’s and O’s as the Jets learned that painfully for the last few seasons.

What Saleh could use is Sam Darnold or whoever the Jets quarterback is to play well for his job to be easy. It would help if Douglas actually acquires disgruntled Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson.

Saleh won the press conference and interview. He has  the “it” factor to be a good head coach Results need to back up his pledge in the name of winning.

The press conference and interview turned out to be easy for Saleh. He knows how to present himself, and he has a way with people.

The hard work begins when training camp starts.

Related Articles

One Comment

Check Also