Shahid Khan, or Shad for short, bought the Jaguars in January 2012 from then owner Wayne Weaver for around $770 million . For making that kind of investment, Shad would then start to make his own imprint on the franchise by a series of moves.
Finding a new head coach is one of the first things that usually takes place when a franchise begins rebuilding; as well as firing the old one. While Khan is saved the luxury of the ladder, he was able to quickly find a new head coach in former Atlanta Falcons offensive coordinator Mike Mularkey, as well as retaining Defensive coordinator Mel Tucker, who did wonders with the keys to the defense last season. With coaches in place, the next step is usually finding a great player to tie into the rebuild such as a franchise quarterback.
Is Blaine Gabbert the answer? He has only been in the league for one lockout season, where he was forced to start while coming out of a spread offense, while also having a lack of weapons outside of Maurice Jones-Drew. Training camp sessions have been reported as great even though various media outlets state Chad Henne could be given the nod. With a revamped offense featuring additions on all levels, the passing attack should improve significantly, considering other factors aren’t an issue.
My heart sank at the image below as it popped up on my computer screen one night after work. The Jaguars were in the mix for Tebow, not a typical Jaguar move considering they passed up Tebow years ago for Tyson Alualu. Khan was looking to make an impression no doubt, but making a move of this caliber and succeeding would definitely have given Jaguars the much needed or not so needed attention. While having a player with the following of Tebow would surely have been great during the offseason, the microscope and scrutiny of any failures either he or Gabbert would have faced would have given the Jags a rigorous beating. That said, would the Gabbert project have lasted? While I still believe in giving Gabbert the benefit of the doubt and a total of three years before any judgement, Tebowmania would surely take hold.
Another issue that hit me as odd just a few days before Superbowl XLVI was a tweet by John Oehser stating, “Shad Khan makes news at the Super Bowl. Jaguars will go to all black uniforms, according to Khan. Change will begin in 2013”. Now while I am for a new look, I can’t help to think how horrible it would be to wear an all black uniform in the Florida heat. Coming to Jacksonville for the first time must be a brutal change for players and coaches alike, and is most definitely an advantage during home games, but wearing an all black uniform does not seem feasible. Wearing black may increase jersey sales and some sort of league recognition, but it may harm the players more depending on home game scheduling.
Khan has only been an owner for a total of about 7 months, and has already proven he is willing to make changes in order to spark the franchise and fan base. With his “All In” campaign, upgrades to the stadium as well as going after free agents unlike years before, Khan may be what the Jaguars need. After all, what Khan happen right?
– Antonio Furgiuele