In the aftermath of Tom Coughlin being fired by the Jacksonville Jaguars, head coach Doug Marrone is doing one thing – preparing for the Atlanta Falcons.
The day after Jacksonville Jaguars announced that Tom Coughlin, the team’s executive Vice-President of Football Operations has been terminated, head coach Doug Marrone met with the media on a usual off day.
As the face of this franchise, the one who talks to the media on a daily basis, the season has not been as productive as he and the front office would have liked. It has been Marrone, who is guiding this roster through a rough 5-9 season.
When he met with the media, he said he was working the rest of this season with “Blinders on, going ahead” as the team prepares to face the Atlanta Falcons on the road this weekend in Week 16.
The Jaguars hope to use last week’s 20-16 win over Oakland as a springboard for momentum this Sunday. A win keeps alive the hope the team does not suffer double-digit losses this season. It also does not help the team’s draft status.
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Marrone and his staff, and the players, are focused on the game on Sunday.
"“I don’t want any excuses from the coaches or the players about distractions, or what may be going on,” he said."
The Jaguars and Falcons have identical 5-9 records and will be home from the postseason this year. That does not mean there isn’t plenty to play for. The distractions off the field in Jacksonville, centering around Coughlin’s departure, should not affect how this team game plans for the Falcons.
"“The players and myself have communicated,” Marrone said. “We made changes and it has benefitted our team. When you talk about leadership and communication and everyone being in it together, these are the things you have do to work with people – whether it’s coaches or players.“Those things have been addressed and we’re on the right path. There’s no doubt about it.”"
As far as the next two weeks, the same message has been conveyed to everyone – that jobs are on the line and this roster and staff must put their best effort forward.
"Per the team’s weekly game release, “Sunday’s meeting marks the seventh matchup between the teams in the regular season with the series split, 3-3. A win on Sunday would mark Jacksonville’s first time winning consecutive road games since the 2017 season (Oct. 8 at Pittsburgh and Nov. 19 at Cleveland).”"
Even with the news of Coughlin no longer being part of the organization, Marrone said he knows there is still plenty to improve on over the next 10 days, which covers the final to two games of the season.
"“It’s a tough situation, but you have to keep your focus, you have to lead and you have to go out there and do your job,” he added."