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Mehta: Meet the guy who would be the smart, bold choice as the new Jets head coach

The search for Todd Bowles’ replacement will take thorough research given that the current pool of head coaching candidates lacks star power. Some have mistakenly concluded that it’s a weak crop simply because there are no slam-dunk coaches-in-waiting like in past years.

Gang Green should embark upon the most critical coaching hire in their maddening 59-year-old history with this guiding principle: Fortune favors the bold.


The truth is that quality candidates abound. You just have to dig deeper to find them. There’s no Easy button for Jets decision makers, no obvious guys to pluck to get their wayward green-and-white ship back on course.

There is, however, a brilliant young leader in America’s heartland who might make some organization look very smart.

You probably don’t know much about Iowa State head coach Matt Campbell, but plugged-in NFL talent evaluators are fully aware of him. Campbell has drawn rave reviews inside scouting circles for his work at Toledo and Iowa State the past six years.

Heck, the Patriots even wanted to hire him once upon a time.

The Daily News discussed Campbell with four general managers and two respected personnel men to learn more about the 39-year-old future coaching star.

He’s a leader who would infuse One Jets Drive with exactly the kind of energy and belief that has been lacking since Rex Ryan got his walking papers four years ago. Campbell isn’t a showman or snake-oil salesman, but he is the kind of voice that this franchise desperately needs.

“Look at what he's done everywhere,” GM No. 1 said. “He's gone in and built a winning culture, a winning program, and above all, a winning roster. He runs a well-coordinated operation, provides good leadership and communicates his expectations well. He’s also able to build relationships.”

NFL talent evaluators have been exceedingly impressed with Campbell’s ability to succeed at Toledo (35-15 with two bowl appearances in three seasons) and transform Iowa State from Big 12 afterthought into a threat against the conference’s traditional powerhouses.

He is stern, fair and direct, according to NFL sources. He is a maniacal worker with an ability to properly fit the pieces into his ever-changing puzzle.

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Looks like my annual sickness is coming back yet again;  that feeling I get because the New England Patriots will once again be in the Super Bowl.     Only the Chiefs can prevent that and that means Reid has to win the biggest game of his career.


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