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Players in Jesse's dressing room seemed to have a universal and respect for Todd Bowles and believe in what he is doing.
The same was obviously not true for the offensive coordinator Jeremy Bates.
There was growing frustration with the Bates scheme and his toy call among the offending Jets players, according to multiple sources of the NFL – a frustration of considerable concern that was brought to Jets' front office. It was not clear whether the players retreated, or the word passed through their agents. But one source made it clear that "Mike (Maccagnan, Jets GM) knew about it all."
Veteran receiver Jermain Kire gave voice to some of these complaints Monday when he told reporters he was not satisfied with the way Bates used this season. Kirs, who only had 37 clicks in 371 meters, said he felt Bates put him on the "back burner". He also said that "it was not a contest" about what Bates wanted to do.
"I felt I was not part of how much," said Kers. "I felt that I put a little on the back burner, what could happen. For me to get out of my best year, statistically a year earlier, I had some very high expectations. It was really frustrating and unfortunate that things did not go as I expected, happens sometimes.
"Do I think the Bates system had a role?"
But the confusing way of using Kerse, a free agent that was supposed to be 65, captured 810 meters and five touchdowns, a year earlier, was only one of the problems with Bates. One player had a problem with what he considered a violation that "lacked creativity" and was too conservative. It was a regular critique of Bates' scheme, especially at the start of the season, when he appeared unwilling to play a young defender Sam Darnold throw down.
Kers has actually raised questions in November. When asked back if Jet's misdemeanor was to be more creative, he said: "I'd rather give this question." And when asked about the team's level of trust in Bates, he called it "heavy butt" and refused to respond to it.
"Some things were just out of control," Kire told reporters on Monday. "Things have changed since the previous year until now, it's definitely frustrating, I will not sit here and I'll transfer all of his accusations, I'll be held accountable, I'm out of the field and weighing on me was not a competition."
An NFL agent, who represents at least one offensive player, who should be a free agent, said that even if Jets retained the Bowles, they would have to fire Bates if they wanted to have a shot at any of the offensive players in a free agency that they are so desperately in need.
This was the second season that Bowles had problems with his offensive co-ordinator. His previous coordinator, John Morton, lasted only one season and was fired after, according to sources, more clashes with other assistants and team players. One former player at the time said that many offensive players expressed private frustration with playing and Morton's plan.
The offensive problems of the coordinator highlight one of the biggest problems in the Bowles era – its inability to bring together top personnel. Neither Morton nor Bates were his top choices to be his offensive coordinator, the team's source said. His poor job security and lack of talent on the list helped Bowles recruit the coaches he loved.
In one year Bates as an offensive coordinator, Jets' misdemeanor was not good. He ranked 29th in the NFL, an average of 299.2 meters per game, 25 in winning (197.8) and 26 in a hurry (101.4). Jets on average had only 20.8 points per game, which was 23 in the league.
However, to the honesty of 42-year-old Bates, Jets are not overwhelmed with an abusive talent. His best receiver, Quincy Enunwa, struggled for a whole season. Kirs, no matter what he thought of his role, fought most of the year. He lost his top running back to injury – Bilal Powell and Isaiah Crowell – and before that Elijah McGuire missed half of the season.
By the end of the season, Bates worked with an offensive line, a third string that ran back, and a kickback (André Roberts) as one of his primary receivers. And, of course, he played with a debutante defender for a whole year.
But that was actually Bates' greatest success. Darrenold had a debut season, finishing 57.7 percent of his passes for 2865 yards in 13 matches, with 17 touchdowns and 15 calculations. But, under Bates' leadership, Darnold ended up strongly, ending 64 percent of his passes in the last four games of the season for 931 meters, six touchdowns and just one interception. It was good for a 99.1 rating.
Bates is believed to be still under contract with Jets, although Bowles was officially fired on Sunday night. However, he is not expected to return with Jets, and it is expected that all former Bowles assistants will eventually be fired.