New York Jets replace long-time trainer after injury-riddled 2019 season (Report)

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John Mellody had been with the New York Jets since 1996 and spent the last 14 seasons as the team’s head athletic trainer.

According to a report from Rich Cimini of ESPN, the New York Jets have removed long-time head trainer John Mellody from the position and replaced him with assistant Dave Zuffelato. Mellody will remain with the organization as a consultant. The Jets have more or less confirmed the news, having updated the staff list on their team website.

An alum of Ursinus College and Syracuse, Mellody joined the Jets in 1996 as the assistant trainer before earning the move up to the top position in 2006 under head coach Eric Mangini. Last season was, unfortunately, an eventful campaign for Mellody and the Jets’ injury list. The team ended the year with 21 players on injured reserve.

Consulted by phone, Mellody declined to comment for Cimini’s report.

Among the casualties were linebacker Avery Williamson (torn ACL) and wide receiver Quincy Enunwa (neck), who were respectively lost in the preseason and opening weekend. Linebacker C.J. Mosley partook in the Week 1 contest against Buffalo before missing the next four games with a groin ailment. He played the October 21 game against New England but an aggravation of the injury put him on IR as well. Others starters who missed games included offensive linemen Kelvin Beachum (ankle) and Brian Winters (knee), as well as defenders Jordan Jenkins (calf) and Quinnen Williams (ankle).

Zuffelato first represented the Jets in 2002 as an intern and became the assistant trainer alongside Mellody in 2006. He earned Athletic Training degrees at Temple and Central Connecticut State University. Robert Daplyn has been hired in his old assistant position, having served in the head position for the Black Knights of Army West Point since August 2016. Fellow assistant Ezron Bryson, a Hofstra alum who has been with the team since 2016, has been retained.

Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags


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