The Jets are expected to name Mike Maccagnan their new general manager. Though a contract has not yet been signed, a source familiar with the Jets' situation anticipates the contract being completed sometime Monday.
A deal appeared imminent after Maccagnan was called back for a second interview on Friday, four days after he first met with owner Woody Johnson, president Neil Glat and consultants Charley Casserly and Ron Wolf. Maccagnan, according to a source, stayed overnight in New Jersey on Saturday and met with the Jets again yesterday.
With their new GM practically in place, Johnson can turn his attention to hiring a coach. A source close to the Jets' situation told Newsday last week that Seahawks defensive coordinator Dan Quinn and Cardinals defensive coordinator Todd Bowles are the top two candidates for the job.
According to another source, Quinn privately has expressed his desire to get the job, and the feeling appears to be mutual. A source said Sunday that "Woody likes him a lot."
There's just one problem: The Seahawks are hosting next Sunday's NFC Championship Game, so the Jets won't be able to talk with him until a week from Monday. The longer Seattle's postseason run lasts, the longer the Jets will have to wait to get Quinn to sign on the dotted line.
According to ESPN, Johnson was prepared to fly to Seattle on his private jet Saturday night if the Seahawks had lost to the Panthers in the divisional playoff round. Seattle beat Carolina, 31-17.
The Jets also had asked to interview Baltimore offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak, but the Ravens announced Sunday that Kubiak will remain with the organization.
Johnson, who fired Idzik and coach Rex Ryan a day after the Jets' 4-12 season ended, admitted he made a mistake by forcing Ryan on Idzik in January 2013. At the time, Johnson thought he could fix the organization's problems by teaming Ryan with a new GM with a strong personnel background who could alleviate their salary-cap woes. But after two years, it became painfully clear that Idzik couldn't handle the job.
Despite having 19 draft picks at his disposal over two years and a salary-cap surplus of more than $20 million heading into the 2014 season, Idzik couldn't move the Jets forward. The team finished 8-8 and 4-12 in the past two seasons, and now Johnson and his new GM are looking to rebuild.
Idzik's frugal ways, however, have put the Jets in a very favorable financial position. The NFL projects the salary cap could be between $138.6 million and $141.8 million, or even higher. That means the Jets will have an extra $40 million in cap space.
Unlike Idzik, Maccagnan has a long history as an NFL scout and a strong reputation as a sharp personnel guy. He also has a connection to Casserly, who brought in Maccagnan as a scout in Washington and later hired him when he became the GM of the expansion Texans.
Though the Jets' interest in Quinn isn't at all surprising, there were questions about his representation.
ESPN reported Sunday that the Jets voiced concerns to the NFL about Quinn being represented by former Jets GM Mike Tannenbaum, who recently was named the Dolphins' vice president of football operations. But a third source said the Jets never told the league they were concerned about Tannenbaum's involvement in the process.
Tannenbaum, who was hired as an agent by Priority Sports to head the company's coaching and broadcasting division in April 2013, recently said he no longer would handle the contract negotiations for his clients. But Tannenbaum, who officially starts his new job on Feb. 1, still will serve in an advisory role during Quinn's hiring process.