Urban Meyer’s stint as the head coach of the Jacksonville Jaguars will be remembered but not for good reasons. He often was oblivious to what was happening on the field and his behavior wasn’t much better off the field. Had he been just incompetent when it came to leading the team, the Jags would have given him more time to implement his vision but all the disfunction that built up during his tenure left them with no choice but to fire him. In fact, the organization believes they fired their former head coach with cause.
Adam Schefter and Jeff Darlington of ESPN report the Jaguars “fired Meyer for cause in order not to pay the remaining four years of his contract. Schefter adds that an “accumulation of instances” justified his dismissal. He notes that the team made up their mind after their embarrassing Week 14 loss to the Tennessee Titans and delayed the announcement of the decision because they already had other events scheduled. Also, the decision to cut ties with Meyer was not related to an incident involving kicker Josh Lambo back in August.
The Jaguars hired Meyer in January hoping he would help them turn things around after going 1-15 in 2020 and winning just 12 games in the previous three seasons. However, he wasn’t off to a good start as the former Ohio State head coach hired Chris Doyle, a coach with a history of bullying players and making racist comments, to be the director of sports performance in Jacksonville. The organization received backlash for the hire and they fired him not long after announcing he would be joining Meyer’s staff. Things only got worse in the next few months, which prompted the team to move on from Meyer.
Urban Meyer deservedly got fired by the Jaguars.
The Jaguars surely wanted to make things work out even though Meyer displayed red flags from the very beginning. The fact that they fired him less than a year after hiring him goes on to show how much he was dragging the team. Instead of learning from his mistakes, he doubled down on them. He could have accepted responsibility for benching James Robinson but opted to blame running backs head coach Bernie Parmalee.
When Meyer was caught on video dancing improperly with a woman that wasn’t his wife, he claimed a big group wanted him to join them on the dance floor and take pictures with them. This was later proven false.
The Jaguars’ former head coach seems unprepared more often than not and would often have no answers for seemingly basic things he should be familiarized with. He would often refer to the Arizona Cardinals as the Phoenix Cardinals. He was also unaware of who was on the field at any given time, which reflected poorly on him and made him the target of jokes.
The Jags rightfully want to avoid paying Meyer the reminder of the season. You could make the case the team is currently worse than it was before he took over and that’s saying something. The Jaguars shouldn’t have to pay for that.