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#pounditTuesday, January 18, 2022

Articles tagged: Jacksonville Jaguars

Jaguars’ stance on Urban Meyer revealed amid latest controversy

Urban Meyer

Urban Meyer’s status with the Jacksonville Jaguars is once again in some question amid reports that surfaced Saturday. However, nothing appears to have changed from ownership’s perspective.

Jaguars owner Shad Khan intends to “stay the course” with Meyer, according to ESPN. That stance comes in spite of reports of extreme tension between Meyer and his players and coaches.

The Jaguars don’t have to make a change right now. While terms of Meyer’s contract aren’t publicly available, it’s safe to assume he’s making upwards of $10 million per year. That would be a very expensive deal to move on from, and the Jaguars won’t be eager to do so less than a year into the contract.

Khan may also be reluctant to move on from Meyer because he’d have to admit failure on a hire he was immensely proud of.

Report names surprise candidate as Jaguars’ potential Urban Meyer replacement

Urban Meyer

There is once again real talk of Urban Meyer lasting just one season with the Jacksonville Jaguars. If a change is made, there may be a surprise candidate waiting in the wings to take over.

Jaguars assistant coach Charlie Strong has emerged as an in-house favorite to take over as head coach if Meyer is fired, according to Jason La Canfora. General manager Trent Baalke is said to be particularly high on Strong, who is said to have adapted well to the NFL and has the respect of players and coaches.

Strong is a familiar name at the college level. The 61-year-old has served as head coach at Louisville, Texas, and South Florida, posting a 74-53 record overall. However, he had no NFL coaching experience prior to joining Meyer’s staff in Jacksonville.

Given how badly things are going for Meyer, it would be surprising to see the Jaguars go with another untested college coach to replace him. That said, the team might just want someone to smooth things over and be a bit more friendly with the players at this point.

Report: Urban Meyer involved in multiple confrontations with players and staff

Urban Meyer in a Jaguars jacket

Urban Meyer appears to have completely lost the backing of players and even staff as the losses mount for the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Tensions have boiled over between Meyer and his players and staff, according to Tom Pelissero of Meyer’s style has led to clashes with numerous members of the roster, with detractors viewing him as condescending.

Meyer has reportedly had three notable run-ins with players and staff in the last two weeks alone. At one point, veteran wide receiver Marvin Jones became so angry with Meyer’s criticism of the receiver group that he stormed out of practice and left the team facility after an argument with Meyer and had to be coaxed back by assistant coaches. Meyer also challenged his assistant coaches during a meeting, calling them “losers” and challenging them to explain what they have ever won.

Contrary to Meyer’s public denials, it was the head coach who benched running back James Robinson after a fumble in last week’s loss to the Rams, Pelissero says. Meyer prevented Robinson from re-entering the game until he was confronted on the sideline by quarterback Trevor Lawrence about Robinson’s benching. Lawrence publicly questioned his coaches over the benching after the game.

Jaguars players openly vented to Rams players after that loss, with the common complaint being that Meyer simply does not treat them like adults.

All of this comes after Meyer’s embarrassing viral video incident following a Week 4 loss to Cincinnati. Even then, there was talk that he had lost the locker room. His methods that worked in college are not translating to the NFL, and he has not adapted despite a 2-10 record and ongoing issues with players.

By all accounts, Meyer remains committed to seeing things through with the Jaguars. However, it is becoming clear that he is unaccustomed to this much losing and unwilling to adapt his methods to NFL players. Those factors may ensure a very short tenure in Jacksonville at this rate.

Photo: Joseph Maiorana-USA Today Sports

Trevor Lawrence calls out Jaguars coaches over James Robinson benching

Trevor Lawrence celebrates

James Robinson has been one of the Jacksonville Jaguars’ best players over the past two seasons, but some recent issues with ball security have resulted in him being benched for extended periods. Trevor Lawrence clearly does not agree with the disciplinary action.

Lawrence voiced his support for Robinson on Wednesday and told reporters the running back needs to be on the field as much as possible. The rookie quarterback said he expressed his concerns to Jacksonville’s coaching staff.

“Bottom line is James is one of our best players and he’s got to be on the field and we addressed it, and I feel like we’re in a good spot and the whole team, we’re good,” Lawrence said, per ESPN’s Michael DiRocco. “Whatever may have happened, I honestly don’t even know everything that went into it.”

Lawrence added that he does not to meddle in coaching decisions during the game. He did, however, express his displeasure in Robinson not being on the field at times over the past two weeks.

Robinson sat for 20 consecutive plays after he fumbled against the Los Angeles Rams last weekend. He was benched for 16 straight plays when he lost a fumble against the Atlanta Falcons the week before. Carlos Hyde also fumbled against L.A., but he was back on the field on Jacksonville’s next drive.

Urban Meyer said he doesn’t micromanage the decisions of his assistant coaches during games but that he will become more involved going forward. The head coach seemed to agree with benching Robinson, though.

“If you lay the ball on the ground and you come out for a few plays, and then it’s up to the position coach and whatever to put you back in whenever that’s time,” Meyer said. “And that’s not (just) James. That’s whomever. When the ball goes on the ground, you come (out).”

Robinson has averaged 4.6 yards per carry through his first two NFL seasons. He rushed for over 1,000 yards last season and has 678 this year. He has also scored seven rushing touchdowns this year, which matches his total from 2020.

You can understand why Lawrence wants Robinson on the field, but it’s somewhat surprising that a rookie quarterback publicly criticized his coaching staff on behalf of a teammate. That’s not going to do anything to change the perception that Meyer has had some locker room issues in his first season with the Jags.

Photo: Oct 10, 2021; Jacksonville, Florida, USA; Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence (16) gestures after scoring a touchdown during the second half against the Tennessee Titans at TIAA Bank Field. Mandatory Credit: Matt Pendleton-USA TODAY Sports

Report sheds light on Urban Meyer’s future with Jaguars

Urban Meyer

Urban Meyer has once again found himself at the center of the college coaching rumor mill, but apparently the Jacksonville Jaguars do not need to be concerned.

Meyer has no interest in taking another college coaching job, ESPN’s Michael DiRocco reports. The 57-year-old remains committed to the Jaguars and trying to build them into a contender.

Meyer is linked to most major college coaching jobs no matter what his situation is at the time they become vacant. That happened once again this week when Brian Kelly left Notre Dame for LSU, and you can understand why.

There is plenty of reason to believe Meyer would have interest in coaching the Fighting Irish. He described Notre Dame as his “dream job” over a decade ago. As recently as 2017, Meyer’s wife Shelly said coaching at Notre Dame would be one of her husband’s dream jobs.

Taking the Notre Dame job would be the perfect way for Meyer to leave the NFL, as he could point to the fact that he has openly admitted he would love to coach there. However, the stench from Meyer’s unflattering scandal in Jacksonville has already worn off. He may genuinely want to see things through, even if his “dream” college job is now available.

Video: Rayshawn Jenkins ejected for throwing punch at 49ers player

Rayshawn Jenkins throws a punch

Tempers flared during the first half of the San Francisco 49ers-Jacksonville Jaguars game on Sunday, and one player was ejected as a result.

Jaguars defensive back Rayshawn Jenkins got into it with San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Jauan Jennings after a play in the second quarter. Jennings’ helmet came off during the skirmish, but he kept his cool. Jenkins did not, instead delivering an open-handed slap to Jennings’ face as players and officials came over to break up the fight.

Jenkins was ejected for throwing a swing. Here’s the video:

The act also led to a 15-yard penalty, which gave the Niners a first down after the Jaguars had come up with a big stop on third down.

Throwing a punch almost always leads to an ejection. This is not the first time we have seen it happen this season.

Jaguars coaches reportedly at odds over Trevor Lawrence

Trevor Lawrence celebrates

The Jacksonville Jaguars had hoped Trevor Lawrence would experience fewer growing pains in his first NFL season. The rookie’s struggles may lead to some significant changes within the organization when the year ends.

There has been disagreement among Jacksonville’s coaching staff over what offense Lawrence should be running, Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports reports. With Lawrence struggling to read defenses, Urban Meyer and some on his staff believe the No. 1 overall pick could benefit from the Jaguars implementing more run-pass option plays like the ones Lawrence ran at Clemson. Others feel that approach would come with a significant risk of injury.

Sources told La Canfora that frustration has been mounting between Meyer and his staff since the offseason. Meyer has supposedly expressed his displeasure with some of his assistants in front of players. Changes are expected, and it’s possible quarterbacks coach Brian Schottenheimer could be shown the door as a result of Lawrence’s struggles.

Lawrence has thrown eight touchdowns all year compared to nine interceptions. He completed just 16 of 35 passes for 162 yards in last week’s 23-17 loss to the Indianapolis Colts.

Meyer has set some ridiculously high expectations for the Jaguars this season. He doesn’t want to hear anyone using a new system or a rookie QB as an excuse, but the team is clearly struggling with that. Time will tell if coaching changes help resolve some of the issues.

Photo: Oct 10, 2021; Jacksonville, Florida, USA; Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence (16) gestures after scoring a touchdown during the second half against the Tennessee Titans at TIAA Bank Field. Mandatory Credit: Matt Pendleton-USA TODAY Sports

Urban Meyer doubles down on high expectations for Jaguars

Urban Meyer Jags

Things have not gone well for the Jacksonville Jaguars so far this season, but Urban Meyer does not want to hear any excuses.

The first-year head coach made a clear statement on Monday about his expectations for the remainder of the season. He said the Jaguars’ play at this point cannot be chalked up to a new system or a rookie quarterback in Trevor Lawrence.

In short, Meyer doesn’t want to hear excuses. Considering the team is 1-5, it’s fair to read this as a criticism of their play so far. Meyer definitely isn’t grading on a curve.

Jaguars players seem to have found some other reasons to blame for their struggles this year. That won’t stop Meyer from maintaining some expectations that border on ridiculous. With upcoming games against the Bills and Colts, it won’t be easy.

Jaguars player had to unexpectedly deliver his newborn baby

Dawuane Smoot smiles

Jacksonville Jaguars defensive end Dawuane Smoot helped the snap a 20-game losing streak on Sunday, but that wasn’t even close to the most impressive thing he accomplished this year.

Smoot’s wife, Aumari, went into labor early Tuesday morning. She and Dawuane quickly gathered their things and were headed out the door to the hospital, but their newborn daughter couldn’t wait. As Smoot told ESPN’s Adam Schefter, his wife fell to her knees and started giving birth. Dawuane had to deliver the baby while speaking with paramedics on the phone.

Fortunately, everything turned out well. Both Aumari and her new daughter, Ahlani Moon Smoot, are said to be doing well.

Believe it or not, this isn’t the first time a professional athlete has had to deliver his own baby at home.

Smoot, 26, was drafted by the Jaguars in the third round back in 2017. He has appeared in all six games for the team this season and has eight tackles and 1.5 sacks. What a week it has been for him.

Twitter reacts to Urban Meyer getting first NFL win

Urban Meyer

Urban Meyer finally got his first ever NFL win on Sunday, and the Jacksonville Jaguars coach deserved it with the call he made at the end of the game.

The Jaguars had the ball at the Miami 44-yard line on 4th-and-8 with the score tied 20-20 and just five seconds remaining. Rather than have rookie kicker Matthew Wright attempt a 61-yard field goal, Meyer had Trevor Lawrence and his offense line up in a Hail Mary formation. But there was no Hail Mary attempt.

With the Dolphins lined up in a deep prevent defense, Lawrence completed a quick 9-yard pass to Laviska Shenault Jr., who immediately went down and called timeout with 1 second left.

Wright then came on and made a 53-yard field goal to win the game. The execution had to be perfect, and it was. The Jaguars would have turned it over on downs had Shenault come up short of the first-down marker.

Thanks to the savvy play design, Meyer got his first ever win. The Jaguars also snapped a 20-game losing streak. Twitter had a variety of reactions:

And our personal favorite:

The Jaguars may have gotten away with a massive late-game blunder (video here), but all that matters is the final score. Meyer has finally generated a positive headline in Jacksonville.