Robert Saleh, NY Jets, Fired, Colin Cowherd
Robert Saleh, New York Jets, Getty Images

Robert Saleh is taking heat from the national media

To say the 2021 season has gone according to plan for the New York Jets would be a downright lie.

Despite being only around halfway through his first season as head coach of Gang Green, head coach Robert Saleh is already facing his fair share of heat from media outlets everywhere.

On his Wednesday show, “The Herd with Colin Cowherd”, FOX Sports personality Colin Cowherd blasted the rookie head coach.

During a segment titled, “Retain or on the Plane”, Cowherd sorted several NFL head coaches into one of two categories: those who should be “retained” for at least another year, and those who should be sent on a “plane” packing. He placed Saleh in the latter category.

“I think it’s a whiff,” Cowherd said. “I think in a division with four defensive coaches, his defense is the only one that keeps getting worse.”

He has a point. The Jets currently rank either last or close to it in nearly every important defensive category, including 32nd in points allowed (32.0) and yards allowed (414.2).

Saleh was billed as a defensive guru who gets the most out of his players. His defense started the year playing decently but has since failed to stop anybody from moving the football.

Of course, the injuries to Carl Lawson, Lamarcus Joyner and Marcus Maye have not helped matters.

Cowherd continued, “In an offensive league, he has no connection to Zach Wilson, who clearly doesn’t listen to him because he’s had to publicly criticize him twice about his interceptions.”

Wilson won Offensive Rookie of the Week following his performance against the Titans in Week 4, so we’ve at least seen one great performance from the 22-year-old in his short stint of five full games. Other than that, he’s had some good moments and some bad ones. To say he “doesn’t listen” to Saleh or doesn’t have a connection with him seems premature at this point in time.

“Their defense is not as bad as this,” Cowherd went on. “I think Robert Saleh was a miss, I had questions going in. I think Zach Wilson is harder than average to coach, there’s some Aaron Rodgers there. I think they whiffed.”

Cowherd has compared Wilson’s attitude to Rodgers since before the NFL draft. Jets fans who have followed the young Wilson quite closely since he was drafted know this not to be the case. He is a team captain as a rookie and seems like a genuinely humble guy.

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The other coaches Cowherd sorted were the Lions’ Dan Campbell (retain), the Vikings’ Mike Zimmer (retain), the Broncos’ Vic Fangio (plane), the Giants’ Joe Judge (retain), the Dolphins’ Brian Flores (retain) and the Seahawks’ Pete Carroll (plane).

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Ian Roddy is a young Jets X-Factor writer who currently attends Loyola Marymount University. Email: iroddy@lion.lmu.edu

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