The Jets have been very interested in former Packers coach Mike McCarthy since the day he was fired by the Green Bay Packers. The one thing they didn't know, though, was how interested he was in them.
Now it seems the interest is definitely mutual.
McCarthy has "warmed" to the idea of coaching the Jets, according to someone familiar with his thinking, and headed into his formal interview with team brass on Saturday with a serious interest in the job. For weeks, people who knew McCarthy thought he'd be more interested in the Arizona or Cleveland jobs, or would decide to sit out all of 2019 instead.
But apparently his thinking has changed. That doesn't mean he's guaranteed to take the Jets job, if offered. And an offer wouldn't likely come this weekend anyway, with the Jets' search expected to continue into next week.
It just means the 55-year-old McCarthy hasn't ruled it out, as some expected he might. Some around the NFL thought he might shy away from the New York spotlight after he at times appeared over-sensitive dealing with the media in small-market Green Bay. Others thought he'd consider the situations and the talent level in Arizona and Cleveland just better.
McCarthy will still interview for the Browns job next week after having to reschedule, but he reportedly turned down a request to interview with the Cardinals.
McCarthy still does appear to be the favorite in the Jets' search, based on his experience and stellar track record with the Packers, and his success with quarterback Aaron Rodgers which bodes well for how he might help develop Jets quarterback Sam Darnold. The Jets have already interviewed Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy and former Miami Dolphins coach Adam Gase, and are scheduled to interview Cowboys defensive backs coach Kris Richard in Dallas on Sunday.
The Jets also are scheduled to interview Buccaneers offensive coordinator Todd Monken on Tuesday, and have expressed an interest in interviewing former Colts and Lions coach Jim Caldwell. They requested permission to interview USC offensive coordinator Kliff Kingsbury and Iowa State head coach Matt Campbell, but Campbell said no and USC has reportedly blocked Kingsbury from interviewing with NFL teams.