Todd Bowles, recently fired as the New York Jets head coach, had an interesting choice.
If Bowles wants to be a head coach again, he had to be a coordinator again first. He was a fine defensive coordinator with the Arizona Cardinals; that’s why he got the shot to lead the Jets.
When Bruce Arians took the job as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ head coach, it was expected that Bowles would reunite with him to run the defense. Then an interesting option came along: Chicago Bears defensive coordinator Vic Fangio became the Denver Broncos’ head coach. Bowles reportedly had an opportunity to lead the Bears’ defense. From the outside looking in, it would seem that running the Bears’ elite defense would give Bowles his quickest path back to being a head-coaching candidate.
ESPN reported Bowles will join the Buccaneers after all, as their new defensive coordinator. He must like a challenge.
Bowles' defenses have been a little up and down. Working backwards, here's how they ranked in yards allowed: 25th, 25th, 11th, 4th (all Jets), 24th, 6th (both with the Cardinals), 15th (Eagles) and 15th (Dolphins). It's not a great sign that the Jets' defense got significantly worse over his two-year tenure or that the Cardinals dropped from 6th to 24th in 2013 and 2014. Bowles did have five-year run from 2011 to 2015 where his defenses where in the top 10 in fewest points allowed in four out of five seasons.