Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Coaching updates

After making a few additions and subtractions over the past few days, the Jets just officially announced their latest changes. First and foremost, Bob Sutton, who had served as defensive coordinator for the past three years has been retained by Rex Ryan. His new title is senior defensive assistant/linebackers.

Prior to becoming the Jets defensive coordinator in 2006, Sutton had been the linebackers coach for the Jets since 2000 when he was hired by then head coach Al Groh. The new defensive coordinator, Mike Pettine, was the linebackers coach for the Baltimore Ravens so it will be interesting to see how this new distribution of responsibilities plays out.

Sutton is both well-liked and well-respected by his players and other coaches both within the team and around the league so in my opinion keeping him is a good move on the part of Ryan and Pettine.

Also added to the coaching staff were Henry Ellard who takes over from Noel Mazzone as Wide Receivers Coach, Anthony Lynn who replaces Jimmy Raye as running backs coach (and who the Jets picked up from the Cleveland Browns), Dennis Thurman as Secondary Coach and Doug Plank as Assistant Secondary Coach.

Ellard was a second-round draft pick by the Los Angeles Rams in 1983 and had a 16-year career as a wide receiver. He spent the last eight seasons coaching receivers with the Rams.

Lynn played running back with the Denver Broncos during two of their Super Bowl championship seasons and has been a running backs coach for the past six years.

Dennis Thurman coached under Rex Ryan at the Ravens for the past seven years and played defensive back in the NFL for nine seasons for the Dallas Cowboys and the then-Phoenix Cardinals.

Plank is a two-time coach-of-the-year in the Arena Football League where he was the head coach of the Georgia Force. He also played safety for the Chicago Bears under Rex Ryan's father Buddy. Plank was a coaching assistant this past season for the Atlanta Falcons.

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