Mike Mularkey couldn’t pull out a win against the Jacksonville Jaguars as interim head coach of the Tennessee Titans.
In what was a huge win for the Jaguars as they try to rally to win the AFC South, Mularkey’s Titans fell flat.
In a game that showcased two of the best young quarterbacks in the NFL in Marcus Mariota and Blake Bortles, many expected to see some bigger plays or higher scores. Instead, we saw a long, drawn out defensive battle that was decided mostly by a punt return and forced fumble.
Mularkey, who only lasted one season with the Jacksonville Jaguars and posted a franchise-worst 2-14 record during his tenure, was put in a tough situation with the Jaguars. He was deprived a talented roster and forced to work with the struggling Blaine Gabbert and veteran Chad Henne at quarterback.
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All in all, it wasn’t a pretty time for the now-interim head coach of a division rival.
Comparing the 2012 Jaguars to the 2015 Jaguars is purely academic, but it is clear that the 2015 version are far more competitive. New general manager David Caldwell has done great work in providing better talent for a coaching staff led by Gus Bradley.
Bradley, to his credit, has managed to provide a spark for the Jaguars with his consistently upbeat personality and approach to the game. While his actual coaching needs to improve, he was about as close to a one-eighty as the team could get from Mularkey’s almost-disinterested approach to the head coach gig.
At the end of Thursday night’s game, it was Bradley and the 2015 Jacksonville Jaguars that stunned Mike Mularkey rather than Mularkey getting revenge on a franchise that wasted a year under his leadership. There is a lot of “what could have been” with Mularkey had he been kept in Jacksonville, but it’s clear the Jaguars have moved on and Thursday’s game showed that they may have made the right decision.