Paul Posluszny is a leader for the Jacksonville Jaguars and his voice and example may end up being the most important as 2016 falls apart.
How much longer can head coach Gus Bradley last with the Jacksonville Jaguars?
That’s the question on everyone’s mind as he struggles through another torturous season, now boasting a 14-40 record (the worst since 1941). The discipline issues on display in Week 7 only add to the problem and expose a coach for being completely out of control.
But it wasn’t Bradley who seemed to be taking a leadership role after the debacle. He is beaten down, saying “I feel for our fans” while struggling to find the upbeat demeanor he’s become known for.
The guy who seemed most incensed about it all was actually middle linebacker and team captain Paul Posluszny. Writes Phillip Heilman of the Florida Times-Union:
linebacker Paul Posluszny didn’t wait for reporters to turn their recorders or cameras on before expressing his disgust late Sunday afternoon.
“Have you ever seen a mess like that before?” Posluszny asked. “Am I overreacting or …”
Poz knows how to be a professional. He’s been the stalwart professional for the Jaguars since being brought over from Buffalo in 2011. He demands excellence from his peers and leads by example, going in every game to rack up tackle after tackle after tackle.
Posluzny is in no way a perfect linebacker and struggles in coverage often, but he’s excellent at being where needs to be, directing the defense, and leading a team that is still overpopulated by players who haven’t become true professionals yet.
When Bradley is inevitably fired some poor coach will be given a lame duck period to show what he’s got. Whether that offensive coordinator Greg Olson or offensive line coach Doug Marrone, it simply is not an enviable job.
I’m not sure how Jaguars coach Gus Bradley survives this embarrassment
— Mark Long (@APMarkLong) October 23, 2016
And the true thing to watch will be how the players react and come together. Posluzny will be the glue to keep it all together and inspire those around him to improve. He’s the only player who seems to be able to hold people accountable while other players are struggling to find words for how bad they play and saying they’ll do the same thing that got them ejected this week.
In the midst of all the chaos on the Jaguars is Posluszny. He needs to be the rock for the team to stand on and rally around. He needs to be that leader.
“We need to act like professionals at all times, regardless of what happens. To have guys get thrown out, multiple penalties over and over again, that’s not who we are and we can’t tolerate that moving forward,” says Paul Posluszny and he’s absolutely right. The Jaguars can’t afford to be amateurs any longer.
It’s not enough to “get better” and have the right talent. The Jaguars need the right leadership and as soon as Bradley’s out of the way we can expect Poz to get players back on track.