With the New York Jets about to embark on a head-coaching search after the season, and the Arizona Cardinals mulling major changes as well with first-year head coach Steve Wilks 2-9 and with an NFL-worst minus-86 first-half scoring differential amid a torrent of blowout losses, there are persistent rumblings in NFL circles about Jets coach Todd Bowles perhaps returning to Arizona.
Bowles is virtually certain not to be back with the Jets next season, league sources said, with the organization poised to go in another direction to try to cultivate young quarterback Sam Darnold, and he remains a beloved figure with the Cardinals from his time as a defensive coordinator there. Arizona's defense has struggled this season, top pick Josh Rosen was forced into action sooner than expected, many top defensive players demanded a trade and Wilks' team has suffered losses of 24-6, 34-0 and 45-10 (twice) (Stream all of Sunday's games on fuboTV, try it for free, and stream the CBS games on CBS All Access).
Furthermore, finding a way to keep Patrick Peterson from reiterating a trade demand in the offseason will not be easy, numerous recent first-round picks have not fit into the new scheme there, and Bowles could command immediate respect. His strong ties with these players cannot be overstated. Bowles also has ties to some of the existing assistant coaches in Arizona, should the organization want to avoid a total blowup, and retain some of the pieces left over from the transition from Bruce Arians to Wilks a year ago. Bowles will likely have other options as well, but he enjoyed his time in Arizona helping to turn around that franchise, and already has a comfort level with many of the prominent figures in the organization.
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