On top of cleaning out his garage, Saleh carved out part of his day to do a series of podcast interviews. One of his appearances was on Mike Silver’s show ‘Open Mike’ and he told a hilarious story about offensive coordinator Mike LaFleur:
“So this is funny. It was like Week 4 of the first season and I get a question from one of our beat writers, I know who it was but I’m not going to put them on blast, about Mike LaFleur. [The question was] whether or not I think he was doing a good job. I was like jeez in the back of my mind, I answer the question and I go to LaFleur and I was like it took me a year and 14 games for me to get questioned about my job security. Already Mike? Jeez, it’s Week 4 man!”
Mike LaFleur Didn’t Get It Done Fast Enough in Jets Media Market
That is a hilarious story and one that is a great example of the New York media and our society today in general.
Instant coffee in the microwave isn’t fast enough for some people.
If Saleh’s memory was correct on that timeframe, the Jets were 0-3 to start the season heading into a Week 4 home game versus the Tennessee Titans.
In those first three contests, the Jets scored a grand total of 20 points. They were blanked in one, didn’t score a touchdown in another, and after going scoreless in the first half of the final game they came back late to make it respectable.
As soon as Saleh was hired the biggest announcement of his new staff was the decision at offensive coordinator. Historically the Jets have brought in defensive-minded head coaches but they had done a poor job of complementing their staff with a bright offensive mind.
He ended up choosing Mike LaFleur who had never called plays before but had been around some really talented offensive coaches throughout his career.
It started off incredibly slow for LaFleur but he would eventually turn it around later in the season with his creative play calls and when he moved up into the booth he unlocked a different part of his game.
Fans rallied around his new location and he earned the nickname ‘Booth LaFleur.’
Mike LaFleur Future Seems Short-Lived
LaFleur has been doing really good work with the Jets. He has cooked up interesting game plans and has helped this Jets offense reach levels it hasn’t in a long time.
I spoke with Jets analyst Connor Rogers on my podcast this week and we discussed the future head coaching candidacy of multiple Jets assistants.
Rogers said he’d be surprised if defensive coordinator Jeff Ulbrich got any interviews because of the reputation of defensive guys and the limited sample size.
However, on LaFleur he said you can “never say never” when it comes to offensive minds. It seems like every cycle an NFL team is willing to make a risky gamble on a coach in that pool.
LaFleur has the last name, an offensive background, and it seems like the chops to eventually land an NFL head coaching job. We’ll see if and when that ends up coming to fruition.