Todd Bowles didn’t do much winning during his four years as the New York Jets head coach, compiling a 24-40 record with Gang Green, including 14-34 over the final three seasons.
The dismal end to his run in N.Y. didn’t cause Bowles to question his coaching ability. Helping turn around the Tampa Bay Buccaneers defense and spurring a Super Bowl run also didn’t provide the 57-year-old with any ‘I told you so’ moments.
“I don’t feel any redemption,” Bowles told Brian Costello of the New York Post. “I’m harder on myself than anybody. When you don’t win games, you get the criticism. In this sport, there’s going to be ups and downs. You’ve got to stay the course and stay who you are. You trust your coaching and the people that taught you. I stuck with that, and everything has worked out for me.”
Bowles’ teams in New York weren’t very good, and there was much debate during his tenure whether fault sat at his feet or management’s, whom provided a faulty roster. The former head coach always took his lumps with the Jets, particularly with the media at the time. Even during the worst periods, he never questioned his coaching ability.
“I didn’t. I really didn’t. I knew I was a good coach,” Bowles said. “I’ll look back at that stuff when I retire. I’ll look back and see what everything is. During the journey, you just keep marching forward.”
In Tampa, under Bruce Arians, Bowles has reminded the world he’s one of the top defensive minds in the NFL. He deserves another chance to lead a team down the road after interviewing with Atlanta and Philadelphia during this cycle. Bowles noted he might be picky about his next venture.
“If the opportunity is right, it will come up,” Bowles said. “I just want to be the best coach I can be. I would love to have that opportunity again, but right now I’m very happy going to the Super Bowl as a defensive coordinator.”
After his defense slowed Drew Brees and Aaron Rodgers this postseason, Patrick Mahomes is on deck. If Bowles’ defense finds a way to curtail the best offense in the NFL, the turnaround from his dark days in New York will be complete.
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