Ranking 5 best head coaches in Jaguars history, where does Doug Pederson land?

• Doug Marrone burned bright with the Jaguars in 2017

• Doug Pederson accomplished big things in 2022

• Tom Coughlin wasn't a good EVP but he knew how to coach

Jacksonville Jaguars head coach Doug Pederson waves after an interview during an NFL Draft watch.
Jacksonville Jaguars head coach Doug Pederson waves after an interview during an NFL Draft watch. / Corey Perrine/Florida Times-Union / USA
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The Jacksonville Jaguars know firsthand that having a bad head coach can make a team go from bad to outright dreadful. Coming off a 1-15 season, they thought Urban Meyer was going to be able to take them out of the cellar and turn them into a perennial contender. Instead, he left the Jags in a state of disarray and it took him less than a year to achieve the dubious feat.

Looking back, it was obvious from the very beginning that Meyer was a bad fit for Jacksonville but owner Shad Khan was blinded by the luster of the championships Meyer won at the college level that he didn't do a thorough background check and overlooked his immense baggage.

Fortunately, Khan realized his mistake, and rather than double down and hope things somehow got better, he kicked Meyer to the curb near the end of 2021. Since then, the Jaguars have gotten much better and are one of the hottest teams in the NFL ahead of the 2023 season, partly due to the work head coach Doug Pederson has put in since taking over last year.

Speaking of Pederson, where does he rank among the best coaches in team history? Here's a look at the top five heading into the 2023 season.

No. 5 head coach in Jacksonville Jaguars history: Gus Bradley

The Jaguars are one of the youngest teams in the league, having been founded in 1993. Thus, they've only had seven head coaches, not including interim Mel Tucker in 2021. With Urban Meyer taking the top spot as the very worst in team history and probably ever, Gus Bradley and Mike Mularkey were the choices for this entry.

Given that Murlarkey won only two games in his lone season at the helm, this spot goes to Bradley. It's true that Bradley left Jacksonville with a 14-48 record but some of that was due to David Caldwell's inability to provide him with talented players. Either way, Bradley has fared much better as a defensive coordinator, a position he holds with the Indianapolis Colts as of this writing.