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Jets Rumors: Eric Bieniemy, Jim Harbaugh, Dan Mullen Candidates to Be Next HC

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistJanuary 2, 2021

Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy addresses the media during a news conference for Sunday's NFL AFC championship football game at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Mo., Thursday, Jan. 16, 2020. The Chiefs will face the Tennessee Titans for the opportunity to advance to the Super Bowl. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
Charlie Riedel/Associated Press

With Adam Gase's tenure as head coach of the New York Jets likely coming to an end soon, the search for his replacement will reportedly feature several marquee names.

Per Ian Rapoport and Tom Pelissero of NFL.com, Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy, Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh and Florida head coach Dan Mullen are on the list of potential candidates.

Rapoport and Pelissero noted the Jets are "expected to part ways" with Gase at the conclusion of Sunday's season finale against the New England Patriots.

Bieniemy appears to be the hot name for a head coaching gig among current NFL assistants. The 51-year-old has spent the past three seasons as Kansas City's offensive coordinator.

The Jets' biggest competition for Bieniemy, if they want him, is the Houston Texans. Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports (h/t Cody Stoots of Sports Illustrated) reported that Deshaun Watson has told Texans ownership he wants the Chiefs offensive coordinator as his next head coach.

Bruce Feldman of The Athletic reported Saturday that Harbaugh is expected to finalize an extension at Michigan through 2026. If Harbaugh wants to return to the NFL, this would seem an odd move on his part, even though college coaches always seem to find a way to get out of deals if they want to.

Mullen has no coaching experience in the NFL, though he's been very successful at the college level. The 48-year-old is 98-55 in 12 seasons between Mississippi State and Florida. He does have experience working with NFL-caliber quarterbacks, including Dak Prescott at Mississippi State and potential first-round pick Kyle Trask at Florida.

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Rapoport and Pelissero noted the Jets' search is expected to be "lengthy and thorough."

Gase is in his second season with the Jets. He had a decent debut year with a 7-9 record, but the wheels fell off in 2020. The team got off to an 0-13 start before winning its last two games heading into Week 17.

Despite the lack of on-field success in 2020, the Jets have the potential for a quick turnaround. They've secured the No. 2 pick in the 2021 NFL draft, an extra first-round pick this year from the Seattle Seahawks as a result of the Jamal Adams trade and five picks total in the first three rounds.

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