New York Jets: Should the Jets target Jim Harbaugh?

New York Jets, Jim Harbaugh
Jan 1, 2018; Tampa, FL, USA; Michigan Wolverines head coach Jim Harbough gestures from the sideline during the second half against the South Carolina Gamecocks in the 2018 Outback Bowl at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Jets are the worst football team currently in the NFL. They have a chance to go winless this season. The Jets have not fired their current head coach Adam Gase. There have been a few names that have emerged in the conversation, but this has been a name that has emerged since 2009.

The New York Jets have been linked with Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh for the past three head coaching searches. But in 2020, it seems like the stars have aligned to get Harbaugh back into the NFL.

Unfortunate timing

In 2009, the Jets secretly interviewed Harbaugh. Ultimately the Jets went with Rex Ryan, who was the coach at Stanford University.

Two years later, in 2011, the 49ers signed Harbaugh to be their head coach. Harbaugh went to a Super Bowl with them and lost to his brother, the Baltimore Ravens’ head coach. Harbaugh only lasted three seasons with the 49ers before he was let loose.

Three years later, in 2014, after being released by the 49ers. The Jets ‘toyed’ with hiring Harbaugh again. Harbaugh decided in 2014 that he would go back and coach college football at Michigan. Were Harbaugh currently coaches at. The Jets ultimately hired Todd Bowels.

Four years later, in 2018, the Jets released Bowles and tried to lure Harbaugh once more. The team to this day denies all reports, but at the end of the day, Harbaugh decided to stay with Michigan.

Now we are here in 2020 wondering the same thing, will the Jets pursue Harbaugh once again?

Harbaugh’s time at the 49ers

In 2011, the 49ers made one of the best decisions that their franchise made in a decade. The hiring of Harbaugh changed their entire organization for a few years. The 49ers did not have a winning record from 2003-2010, and Harbaugh turned them into a Super Bowl contending team and his short four years there. In four seasons, Harbaugh went to the playoffs three out of the four seasons and also went to the Super Bowl against the Baltimore Ravens.

Harbaugh changed the entire team, but he changed the most important position on the field, his quarterbacks. Harbaugh brought the best out of Alex Smith. When Smith got hurt during their 2012 season, Colin Kaepernick was the backup. Harbaugh turned Kaepernick into a dynamic and starting quarterback for years to come.

In 2014, Harbaugh and the 49ers’ front office clashed so severely, the 49ers fired Harbaugh. Harbaugh decided to go coach college football again at Michigan, where he currently coaches at now.

Does it make sense for the Jets are hire Harbaugh?


The New York Jets needs a coach that he player love. Harbaugh was loved by his players when he coached for Stanford and Michigan but also when he coached for the 49ers.

Harbaugh built successful programs at Michigan and Stanford. Harbaugh turned the 49ers from a losing record team to the playoffs and Super Bowl in just a few short years.

At Stanford, Harbaugh developed one of the better quarterbacks in the NFL, he is currently retired, in Andrew Luck. Harbaugh also brought the best out of Smith when he was the starter for the 49ers. Harbaugh changed his entire playbook for Kaepernick but also made him successful and also win a Super Bowl with him.


The issues aren’t with the players, it’s more with the front office and general manager. It will be hard for the Jets general manager, Joe Douglas, to hire a coach that was fired a few years ago due to clashes with the front office.

Another con would be, Douglas does not have a clear connection with Harbaugh other than working with his brother, John Harbaugh, with the Ravens.

Harbaugh is a name to follow during the rest of the NFL season and the offseason. Harbaugh and the Jets have been a thought for the last 11 years, it would a shock if the Jets go after Harbaugh hard this offseason.