The New York Jets just hired Todd Downing to be their next passing game coordinator, per Ian Rapoport of NFL Network. Downing spent last season with the Tennessee Titans as their offensive coordinator.
New York Jets add Todd Downing to their offensive coaching staff:
Downing is a fairly young coach at 42 years old, turning 43 this summer. He has spent the last 24 years in football in some capacity, whether it be as a coach or in a front office. Downing started in 1999 at Eden Prairie HS in Minnesota, where he spent two years coaching. The last 22 years for Downing have all been spent in the NFL. His first four years were in the Minnesota Vikings front office. The 18 years since have all been spent as a coach.
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For seven years, from 2010-16, Downing worked with quarterbacks as either an assistant quarterbacks coach or in the lead position. Over those years, he spent time with Matthew Stafford and Derek Carr.
Downing has three years of offensive coordinator experience. His first time calling plays was in 2017 with the Raiders. Over the last two years, Downing was the play-caller for the Titans.
He has also done some recent work with tight ends as well. Downing coached the position for one year with the Minnesota Vikings in 2018 and then with the Tennessee Titans for two years (2019-20). During those seasons with the Titans, one could point out that Downing played a part in the growth of Jonnu Smith, who had a big breakout in 2020.
In his first year as an offensive coordinator, 2017, Downing had the Raiders passing game rank 16th in the NFL (226.6 yards per game). His two years calling plays for the Titans did not result in great things for their passing game. In 2021, the unit ranked 24th in passing, averaging 201.1 yards per game. Things got even worse in 2022, as Downing’s passing attack finished 30th in the NFL, with 171.4 yards per game.
Downing does have a connection to the Jets’ new offensive coordinator, Nathaniel Hackett, as the two spent a year together in Buffalo (2014). He also spent the past four years in Tennessee with the Jets’ new offensive line coach and run game coordinator, Keith Carter.
The stats posted by Downing’s previous passing attacks are certainly underwhelming. What it seems like the Jets are valuing here is his experience. Downing has spent the last 18 years coaching in the NFL, three of those years were spent as an offensive coordinator with two different teams. Also, relationships with other coaches on the Jets offensive staff in Hackett and Carter. Downing will obviously play an integral part in the Jets’ passing game, one that needs to take a step in the right direction next year.