Robert Saleh, who now heads the New York Jets, got his NFL start as a coaching intern for Vic Fangio

Shortly before their training camp in 2005, the Houston Texans hired 26-year-old Robert Saleh as a defensive intern, his first NFL job after coaching for Michigan State, Central Michigan and Georgia.

The Texans’ defensive coordinator was Vic Fangio, and even though they only worked together for one season, they have kept in touch.

Saleh is now the New York Jets’ first-year coach, and they face the Fangios Broncos on Sunday.

How does an intern prove his worth to Fangio?

“You give him a lot of work and see if he gets it done the right way, and he did,” he said before training on Thursday. “Robert did a great job for us. He obviously had a good work ethic and did a good job. Many people have good work ethic, but their work is not very good. He was able to do both. He was smart. One could see that he had a good future in coaching. ”

After the ’05 season, the Texans changed coaching staff, but Gary Kubiak retained Saleh and moved him to quality control (2006-08) and assistant linebackers coach (2009-10). Saleh continued to work for Pete Carroll (Seattle, 2011-13), Gus Bradley (Jacksonville, 2014-16) and Kyle Shanahan (San Francisco, 2017-20).

“It was a bit of a whirlwind (in Houston),” Saleh said in a conference call with Denver reporters. My head swam and it was a tough year (2-14 record), but I took a lot from Vic. He’s one of the more detailed men I’ve ever been around. ”

Fangio and Saleh played golf in the Bay Area when Saleh was the 49ers’ defensive coordinator.

“He has that old man swing that goes right down the middle 200 yards,” Saleh said. “I’m busy trying to hit it 300 yards as I walk out of every fairway. He’s a better scorer than me. ”

Damage report. Nose tackle Mike Purcell (knee), who did not practice on Wednesday, was a limited participant on Thursday. Restricted for the second day in a row was receiver Tim Patrick (hip) and tight end Noah Fant (ankle).

Receiver Courtland Sutton (hip), right guard Graham Glasgow (illness) and defensive end Shelby Harris (wrist) were in full swing.

Fangio said Glasgow, who missed the Jacksonville game after experiencing an irregular heartbeat late in the win over the New York Giants, is on track to play against the Jets.

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