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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No. 2 head coach in Jacksonville Jaguars history: Doug Pederson

Doug Pederson had a great first season with the Jaguars and it looks like they're going to pick up where they left off last year. Having said that, you can't crown him just yet, even if he and the Jaguars have a favorable chance of accomplishing great things next season. For the time being, let's talk about the impact Pederson had in his first season at the helm.

The Jags knew they had to get their head-coaching search right after the Urban Meyer debacle and it took them nearly two months to choose Pederson. Although they came close to hiring Byron Leftwich, they ultimately made the right decision.

Right off the bat, Pederson didn't promise any magic-wand solutions and was instead upfront: His rebuild was probably going to take a bit of time and he wasn't lying. Meyer left the Jags in a state of turmoil, both players and coaches were intimidated and consistently threatened while he got frisky with a woman that wasn't his wife at a bar in Ohio.

While that's a very simplistic characterization of Meyer's tenure as his head coach, there's no doubt he left the team in shambles and Pederson had his work cut out.

But instead of focusing on Xs and Os or installing his system, he worked on earning his players' trust and — checks notes — treating them like people. Not surprisingly, players responded to Pederson's more personal approach and rallied behind him.

Now, the Jaguars are in good shape and ready to seize the AFC South title for the season year in a row, a feat they've never accomplished. And if they pull it off, it will be partly due to Pederson.