As New York Jets fans happily watch the departure of last season’s coaching staff as they work their way up to Western New York to join Rex Ryan in Buffalo, Jets rookie head coach Todd Bowles seems to be reaching out to some old friends of his own from his time with the Miami Dolphins as well as his days as a collegiate player himself.
Bowles worked in Miami from 2009-2011 after spending the 2005-2007 seasons with the Dallas Cowboys. If Dolphins defensive line coach Karl Rodgers joins Bowles’ staff as expected, he would be the third former Miami assistant brought on board with rumors of a possible fourth on the way. New offensive coordinator Chan Gailey has ties to the Dolphins (but not to Bowles) from his work as their offensive coordinator in 2000 and 2001. Joe Danna, a defensive backs coach, is already on board with Bowles and was a part of the Dolphins staff during the 2010 and 2011 seasons in which the two worked together.
In addition to Gailey, Rodgers and Danna, it is being reported that the Atlanta Falcons denied the Jets request to interview their special teams coach Keith Armstrong. Armstrong ran Miami’s special teams from 2001-2007 before heading to Atlanta where he has been ever since. Like Gailey, Armstrong wasn’t present with Bowles’ in South Florida, but the two were college teammates at Temple University.
While it appears an Armstrong to the Jets scenario is unlikely, the issue won’t resolve itself until the Falcons bring a new head coach on board to determine Armstrong’s fate. Given his stellar record as a coordinator, it sounds as if any new coach in Atlanta would be happy to keep Armstrong away from the Jets or any other NFL team, but that remains to be seen.