FLORHAM PARK, N.J. – Jeff Ulbrich could be a name to watch in the NFL’s next head coaching cycle and the Jets defensive coordinator admitted he’s pondered what it would be like to run his own team.
“I’d be lying to you if I didn’t say there’s times I’ve thought about it,” Ulbrich said Thursday. “It’s funny because I’d never thought of the big picture, the global picture that a head coach might look at things at, but I’m starting to look at the game in that way.”
Ulbrich is in his third season with the Jets. He credits Robert Saleh for letting him to call the plays and all the coaches for helping him become better at his job.
A linebacker for 10 years with the 49ers, Ulbrich’s group finished fourth last season and is ninth this year in total defense. Saleh had said Ulbrich “checks every single box” and deserves head coaching consideration.
“My vision of what I would like to do if I were ever to get that opportunity is becoming very clear,” said Ulbrich, who previously coached with the Seahawks and Falcons. “I’m very happy where I’m at, love working here …. but there’s a small part of me that’s letting my brain entertain that at times.”
Rodgers back at practice
Aaron Rodgers was back on the practice field Thursday after not participating the prior day. He did some throwing and drop backs in the portion open to the media. The Jets officially listed Rodgers (Achilles) as limited.
Breece Hall (ankle) didn’t practice for the second straight day, but he said he’s playing Sunday. Also missing practice for the second consecutive day were John Franklin-Myers (ankle), Wes Schweitzer (calf) and Jason Brownlee (ankle).
Offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett referred to the NFL as “the best profession in the world, but it’s not the best business” in light of quarterback Tim Boyle being released. Hackett worked with Boyle in Green Bay and with the Jets.
“I love him, I wish him the best,” Hackett said. “That’s just a part of how things work. It’s unfortunate. We have to move on. We have to score some points.”
Newly signed Brett Rypien played four games for Hackett last year when he coached the Broncos. Hackett said Rypien “understands the system” and “he’s a very efficient guy.” Rypien will be the Jets emergency quarterback Sunday.