The New York Jets are close to tapping Gregg Williams as defensive coordinator to complement the offensive-minded Adam Gase.
The offensive-minded head coach needs a strong defensive coordinator, since he’s not well-versed in that area, and it looks like he got his man. Ian Rapoport of NFL.com reports that Gregg Williams is on the verge of becoming the defensive coordinator.
New #Jets coach Adam Gase is on the verge of a big hire: Former #Browns interim coach Gregg Williams is in talks with Gase to become their new defensive coordinator, sources say. Things are progressing in this direction, and those involved believe it’ll get done.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) January 11, 2019
Rapoport notes that everybody involved believes it will get done, meaning that the talks have likely progressed to term and compensation. Williams, who will be 61 at the start of next season, has been an NFL coach since 1990 after coaching at the high school and college levels. He was forced to sit out the 2012 season due to the bounty-gate scandal.
He’d previously worked with the Cleveland Browns, where he started as defensive coordinator in 2017. He took over as interim head coach after Hue Jackson was fired and guided the team to a 5-3 record. Observers noted Baker Mayfield’s improvements during his tenure, although that had more to do with the offensive staff.
Williams was also the head coach of the Buffalo Bills from 2001-2003, and he has a career 22-34 record as a head coach. He’s spent parts of 17 seasons as a defensive coordinator, and parts of four seasons as a head coach.
His teams have finished in the top 10 in yards allowed seven times, and have five top-10 finishes in points allowed. While defensive coordinator of the Tennessee Titans in 2000 he had his best season in each category when they finished first in yards and second in points.
Williams runs a 4-3 scheme, which is a departure from the 3-4 the team has run in recent years. The team will need to find an EDGE Rusher in order to truly unlock Williams’ scheme, perhaps Chandler Jones should he become available.
Williams inherits a defense with few true playmakers outside of Jamal Adams. However, Leonard Williams and Marcus Maye have established themselves as strong starters, and Avery Williamson had a good first season with the team.
Gregg Williams gives Gase an aggressive defensive coordinator who’s coaching style should result in the team being able to put the ball in the offense’s hands more frequently.