(WFAN) In a shocking development Wednesday, the New York Jets have fired general manager Mike Maccagnan.
Team Chairman and CEO Christopher Johnson announced the firing in a statement Wednesday. He said new head coach Adam Gase has been named interim general manager.
"This morning, I informed Mike that he was being relieved of his duties as General Manager of the team, effective immediately," Johnson said. "Mike helped to execute the strategic vision of the organization during the last four seasons and especially the past few months. However, I came to the decision to make a change after much thought and a careful assessment of what would be in the best long-term interests of the New York Jets."
Johnson added that he would begin the search for a new permanent GM immediately.
The timing of the firing is curious because the Jets elected to retain Maccagnan rather than cleaning house when they fired coach Todd Bowles in December. Maccagnan had led the front office through free agency and last month's draft.
WFAN's Brian Costello reported that Gase and Maccagnan butted heads over the signing of free agent running back Le'Veon Bell -- Gase thought the four-year, $52.5 million deal they paid him was too high. Gase also didn't love how much linebacker C.J. Mosley, who signed for five years, $85 million, was paid, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport.
The Jets hired Maccagnan in January 2015. The team went 24-40 under his leadership and never reached the playoffs. After the Jets went 10-6 in his first season, Maccagnan was voted NFL Executive of the Year by the Pro Football Writers Association.
Despite that the Jets lost double-digit games each of the past three seasons, the outlook for the franchise seemed promising after Maccagnan traded up to land quarterback Sam Darnold in the 2018 draft. After the Jets entered free agency with more than $82 million to spend, Maccagnan signed Bell and Mosley, among others. The Jets' draft class was highlighted by first-round pick Quinnen Williams, a defensive tackle out of Alabama.
The Jets also fired vice president of player personnel Brian Heimerdinger, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter, who also reported that NFL Network draft analyst Daniel Jeremiah is under serious consideration for a prominent front-office position with the Jets.