Gase feels as though he has let down Jets CEO Johnson
NEW YORK (AP) — Adam Gase recognizes he has failed.
The New York Jets coach is a realist and well aware he has not lived up so far to the hopes and expectations of Christopher Johnson — or a frustrated fanbase.
When Johnson, the Jets’ CEO and chairman, introduced him as New York’s coach in January 2019, he talked about Gase being “an innovator” and “a creative mind.”
They were traits Johnson highlighted again earlier this season while showing support for the coach.
Now, the end seems inevitable after just two seasons for Gase, whose 0-13 team appears on a collision course with dubious NFL history. The Jets have three more games to avoid joining the 2008 Detroit Lions and 2017 Cleveland Browns as the league’s only 0-16 teams.
And for that, and the dismal state of the team, Gase feels he has let Johnson down.
“Yes,” Gase said without hesitation. “I’ve tried to figure out where things went wrong, what can we change? You’re trying to evaluate things as you go and adjust to try to fix whatever the issue would be for that month or that three games or four games.
“At the end of the day, it’s about winning. We haven’t done that. For him not to feel a playoff feel of being competitive in December, it’s disappointing to me that we haven’t been able to do that for him.”
The reasons are aplenty and have been discussed, written and debated about ad nauseum over the past several months. From the regression of quarterback Sam Darnold to Gase’s questionable play-calling, the blame ultimately rests at the feet of the head coach.
And Gase knows it. That’s why it’s all but a lock for the Jets to be on the hunt for a new coach the day after the team’s season finale at New England.
“This is a results-oriented business,” Gase said. “Nobody cares about the process, for the most part. Coaches and players have to focus on the process. That’s what we have to do. Outside of that, most people are just looking for the end result.”
That means Johnson, too.
Gase acknowledged he and Johnson have a solid relationship, despite all the losing, and the two speak regularly.
“I’ve never seen anger,” Gase said. “I mean, he’s like all of us. He wants to win as much as we do.”
The coach has also expressed his regrets for how his tenure — 7-22 overall — has played out.
“I’ve told him multiple times he deserves better, especially with how he is with our players, our staff, our coaches, anybody involved in this organization,” Gase said. “I couldn’t ask to work for a better guy.”
Both Gase and Johnson have shared the disappointment of the losses after games, with their conversations geared more toward problem solving than pointing blame.
“It has been more about our guys, how hard they’re playing, what do we need to do different to try to change the result?” Gase said. “Do we need to get different guys out there? He can see it and look at it: ‘OK, are we playing hard or not? Where are we making our miscues?’ Some of them are obvious to everybody of, hey, we lost that game because of this, penalties or we didn’t finish the game situationally, we let a ball get over our head when we shouldn’t have.
“We’ve had those discussions. He can see the effort the guys are playing with. It’s just we’ve got to find a way to finish some of these games.”
The Jets thought they did just that two weeks ago when they were beating Las Vegas in the final seconds, only to see it slip away because of a curious call by since-fired defensive coordinator Gregg Williams.
The sideline went from celebration to stunned silence.
That’s this season in a nutshell for the Jets, who have managed to stay together behind closed doors despite the swirling speculation and fermenting frustration.
“I couldn’t be more appreciative to the locker room the way that they’ve handled all this stuff,” Gase said. “This could easily be, for me, just a nightmare to have to deal with if I’m putting out fires all the time, let alone try to win the game. And I don’t have to worry about that because our locker room has done a great job as far as our leadership in there.
“These guys have just stayed the course and just kept fighting and trying to try to put the right stuff on tape.”
NOTES: The Jets placed LB Jordan Jenkins (shoulder) and S Saquan Hampton (Achilles) on injured reserve, ending their seasons. It could also be the end of Jenkins’ tenure with New York. The longest-tenured Jets player is scheduled to be a free agent in the offseason. ... K Sam Ficken and RB La’Mical Perine were designated to return to practice from IR. Ficken has missed three games with a groin injury, while Perine has been sidelined three games with a high ankle sprain. ... WR Jamison Crowder (calf) did not practice. ... Rookie WR Denzel Mims was back practicing after missing the game Sunday at Seattle following a family emergency. ... S Marcus Maye (rib), C Connor McGovern (hamstring) and WR Breshad Perriman (shoulder) were limited, while Darnold (ankle), OL Pat Elflein (shoulder) and DL John Franklin-Myers (wrist) were full participants. ... K Sergio Castillo, who was released Tuesday after he missed three field goal attempts Sunday, was re-signed to the practice squad.
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