After deciding a little over a week ago to not retain four assistant coaches and one consultant, Rex Ryan is adding a familiar face to his staff: Mark Carrier.
The Jets are bringing in Carrier to serve as the team's new defensive line coach. Carrier, who's been on the Ravens coaching staff since 2006 and spent time under Ryan in Baltimore, was the Ravens defensive backs coach for the past four seasons.
Carrier will also be once again working closely with Jets defensive coordinator Mike Pettine, the same guy who was the Ravens outside linebackers coach from 2005-08 before following Ryan to the Jets a year ago. Defensive assistant Jeff Weeks and consultant Chuck Smith combined to coach the defensive line after Kerry Locklin was fired in November. Smith is getting closer to taking that defensive line coach position at the University of Tennessee that Ryan told us about last week.
Carrier, a former defensive back and first-round pick out of USC, played for 11 seasons in the NFL, mostly spending time with the Bears before moving on to Detroit and finishing things off with the Redskins in 2000. He was selected to three Pro Bowls and was named the NFL's defensive rookie of the year in 1990.
In speaking with Ravens web site, Carrier talked about his desire to one day be a defensive coordinator and how this move would help him achieve that goal. Obviously, that thing about working for Rex also played a huge factor.
Apparently, Ryan approached Carrier about the position while down in Miami last week.
“Rex gave me my chance here [in Baltimore], so I feel very comfortable with him,” Carrier told the site. “I can almost 100 percent say I wouldn’t have done this for [just] anybody. It would have to be the right situation and this is the right situation for me.”
“It was a tough decision,” Carrier added. “I’m very comfortable here, my family is very comfortable here. As far as I know, there’s no better place to work at. But it’s also an opportunity to do something that I may not get a chance to do. And it’s going to work with people whom I’m comfortable with.”