FLORHAM PARK, N.J. (AP) — Brian Schottenheimer is happy right where he is.
The Jets’ offensive coordinator wants to remain in New York despite rumors that the Buffalo Bills are interested in talking to him about their vacant head coaching position.
“For the last couple of years, I’ve had some opportunities and was very interested,” Schottenheimer said Wednesday. “For the first time in a real long time, I’m really happy. I love it here, I love working with Coach Ryan and I hope I’m here for a long time.”
Schottenheimer has run the Jets’ offense the past four seasons, overseeing the NFL’s top rushing attack and the development of rookie quarterback Mark Sanchez. He has been instrumental in the team’s late-season push to make the playoffs, with a first-round game at Cincinnati on Saturday.
“I think it’s all about timing,” Schottenheimer said. “You want to be in the right spot and I feel like right now, I’m in a great spot with a great organization.”
After being a candidate for New York’s job last offseason, Schottenheimer chose to stay on after Rex Ryan was hired.
“If somebody came and wanted to talk to me, would I listen? Probably,” he said. “But I’m saying that I’m very happy here. I love the area, I love working with Rex. I’m excited about the things we’re doing offensively and I’m really content.”
Ryan’s honest, this-is-me approach has really rubbed off on Schottenheimer.
“I made the decision to come back last year, not knowing what this year would hold working for Rex,” he said. “It hasn’t been perfect, but it’s been pretty damn close. … Rex is just really easy to work for.”
The Bills are searching for their fourth head coach in 10 years after Dick Jauron was fired in November, and Schottenheimer has been mentioned as a candidate.
“I know nothing, I really don’t. I hear the rumors like you guys do,” Schottenheimer said. “Again, and this is not just coach speak, and you guys can believe me because I’m telling you the truth: I’m very, very happy and I hope we can continue on in this process for a long time and hope we win a lot of games. I mean that. It’s not just something I’m saying to you guys.”
Ryan said earlier in the week that he was afraid he might lose Schottenheimer in the offseason because of the job he has done with the Jets.
“Somebody told me that, and I was like, ‘Maybe he’s trying to push me out the door,’ and I kind of chuckled about it,” he said.
Schottenheimer’s father, Marty, has also been mentioned in connection with the Bills.
“He’s told me for the last probably two years that he’s done,” Brian Schottenheimer said. “I think if it was the right job, I think he would listen, but at the end of the day, it would take a heck of a lot to convince him to come off the golf course and go back to work.”