The New York Jets have clearly established a brand-new culture under Robert Saleh. How much of an effect will it have on team success?
From Dan Feeney and the crew heading out to the Coliseum for Islanders games, to Zach Wilson and Elijah Moore frequenting local restaurants together, to George Fant‘s celebrity softball game, this New York Jets team is showcasing off-field chemistry that is unlike anything fans have seen from the organization in a long time – if there even is a Jets team that has showcased comparable camaraderie (at least on a public level).
How much of an impact do these things have on team success? Is this team’s togetherness merely a requisite trait for a successful franchise that has Jets fans overly excited simply because they haven’t seen it from their team in so long? Or, is it something truly unique that could greatly aid the franchise in its quest to establishing itself as a yearly contender?
Finding the answer to that question is tricky.
No one will argue that the Jets are going to win games because James Morgan can rob a home run or Dan Feeney can chug a beer. However, it is unquestionably remarkable that this Jets group is as tight-knit as it is considering that most of the players on the drastically overhauled roster have only been together for a few months.
This just feels significantly different than what the world saw from recent Jets teams. It even stands out compared to other teams in the NFL today.
The progress that the Jets are making from a locker room connection standpoint is not something that should be completely ignored. Most of the league’s consistently successful organizations have established a positive culture and a clearly defined identity, such as the Packers, Patriots, Seahawks, and Steelers.
Both of those traits are crucial in cultivating consistency.
A positive reputation helps to build respect amongst players, agents, and coaches around the league, aiding in attracting upper-echelon talent. It also helps the team retain its best in-house talent. Perhaps most importantly, a positive culture creates a healthy, productive working environment in which individuals are motivated to put the organization ahead of themselves and operate with a collective commitment to excellence.
It is also important to establish a clear identity. Knowing who you are as an organization – not just on the field, but in terms of off-field energy as well – helps to clearly define what the expectations of the team are and what kind of people you must find to meet those expectations.
When your team is able to formulate a blueprint that clearly defines the needs of the organization, it becomes easier to restock the team year after year because you know exactly what you’re looking for (not just in players, but in coaches and staff members as well).
Teams that comfortably reach that aforementioned level of establishing a firmly defined blueprint tend to have a much easier time sustaining success than organizations that lack stability. This is because unstable teams are constantly fluctuating between different identities, needs, and expectations (such as the Jets in recent years), making it difficult for them to find year-to-year consistency since their blueprint is constantly changing.
However, the most important factor to keep in mind regarding all of this culture and identity talk is that only one thing can truly earn a team the distinction of being considered a “positive culture,” and that’s winning football games.
We must harken back to the original question, though. Does having a positive culture help you win football games? Or is a positive culture nothing more than a trivial title that is awarded to teams after they win a lot of games first?
On the latest episode of the Cool Your Jets podcast, Ben Blessington and Michael Nania dig deep into the Jets’ brand-new culture and what it means (or doesn’t mean) for the team’s prospects of finding long-term success.
Plus, they discuss the Jets’ Morgan Moses pursuit, Robert Saleh’s comments on the team’s cornerback and backup quarterback plans, and the biggest stock-risers on the roster from spring practices.