Jacksonville Jaguars: Urban Meyer drawing ‘sideways looks’ from peers
After parting ways relieving Doug Marrone of this head-coaching duties, the Jacksonville Jaguars hired Urban Meyer as his replacement. Looking at the success level he enjoyed at the college level, it’s easy to see why the Jags believe he’s the right man to oversee their rebuild. Although Meyer hasn’t made his NFL debut yet, he’s made significant changes in his short stint in Jacksonville and the organization looks in better shape than it was one year ago. However, it seems like not everyone is thrilled with his approach.
Jason LaCanfora recently touched on several topics around the NFL, including Meyer’s tenure as the Jaguars’ head coach. La Canfora says he “continues to draw sideways looks from execs, coaches, and cap gurus around the league”.
"Giving away accomplished linebacker Joe Schobert to the Steelers and eating salary in the process is a head-scratcher, the Time Tebow thing was always nutty and the charade with declaring a starting quarterback is more trouble than it is worth."
LaCanfora says that “there were concerns among some on that roster that Tebow was there to be a locker room spy”. However, there are currently no indications of that being the case. He then mentions that giving “sacrificing starting reps for the first overall pick to split it with Minshew is beyond odd”. La Canfora thinks that Meyer may be trying to do too much.
"It has the feel of a college coach trying to do too much and this transition is challenging enough on the surface. Another week, another sign of potential concern."
Is the criticism of Jacksonville Jaguars head coach Urban Meyer warranted?
There may be some merit to LaCanfora’s observations. Then again, you could argue why all these comments (by anonymous sources) may not amount to much in the grand scheme of things. The case can be made that Joe Schobert wasn’t a good fit in Jacksonville, and the Jags chose to cut their losses and get a late-round draft pick instead of keeping him around and receive nothing in return. Also, giving Tim Tebow a shot may have been indeed “nutty” but they always knew there was a chance it wouldn’t work out.
Then, there’s the Jaguars’ “quarterback competition”. The coaching staff could have already named Trevor Lawrence the starter but as long as they do before the beginning of the season, it shouldn’t be a cause for concern. Sure, he’s splitting first-team reps with Gardner Minshew but how much is it really going to affect his development?
If Lawrence struggles during the regular season, you can then question the Jaguars’ decision not to name him the starter sooner. For the time being, there’s no way to tell if it will come back to haunt them.
In the end, there’s only one way to silence all the doubters: Winning football games. If Meyer wins early, nobody will question his vision and methods. It’s true that he’s made mistakes along the way, but that’s true for pretty much every first-time NFL head coach. He already proved he can win games at the college level, and the Jacksonville Jaguars expect him to do the same in the pros. Otherwise, they wouldn’t have hired him.