The New York Jets will introduce their new head coach, Robert Saleh, on Thursday afternoon to the New York media, the team announced.
The 41-year-old was hired last Thursday after a second interview with the Jets earlier that week at team facilities. Saleh rose up the ranks as a promising head-coaching candidate after four successful seasons as the defensive coordinator of the San Francisco 49ers.
He was a hot commodity on the market, also piquing interest from the Atlanta Falcons, Detroit Lions, Los Angeles Chargers, and Jacksonville Jaguars.
Saleh first began grabbing the attention of other teams in 2019 when his defense was the backbone of a 49ers team that won an NFC title before losing Super Bowl LIV to the Kansas City Chiefs.
Despite a depleted roster amid the COVID-19 dominated 2020 season, Saleh’s defense still ranked in the top-10 in total yards (fifth) allowed, rush yards (seventh) allowed, and pass yards (fourth) allowed.
As a fiery leader on the sidelines, he comes to the Meadowlands with large expectations.
“It was clear to us that Robert was the right person to help us move forward,” Jets owner Christopher Johnson said. “He is a collaborative leader with proven success in the NFL. In addition to his work as a coach on this level, his passion and knowledge of the game along with his vision for establishing an identity for this team sold me.”
If there is a franchise that is in desperate need of a cultural reset, it’s the Jets, who have spent most of the last decade as one of the laughing stocks of the NFL.
“There are no shortcuts to success, and I am committed to working with [GM Joe Douglas] to build this team the right way: with talented players that play fast and smart, and a staff that supports and helps develop them through it all,” Saleh said in a statement on Tuesday. “To Jets Fans, your passion and commitment are priceless. I understand your expectations and embrace them.”