Urban Meyer’s NFL tenure went about as briefly and poorly as possible.
Meyer has been fired by the Jacksonville Jaguars, according to multiple reports.
The news comes as the Jaguars have struggled through a 2-11 season, which is Meyer’s first with the team and first ever in the NFL.
Meyer’s job status seemed to be trending towards a firing over the last few months. Really, his tenure never got off to a good start.
To begin with, Meyer pulled off some personnel moves as if he were already an established, winning NFL head coach like Bill Belichick or something. He hired former Iowa strength coach Chris Doyle despite Doyle being pushed out by Iowa over racism claims. Then Meyer brought in Tim Tebow to play tight end before cutting him. Meyer was acting like he was a big shot who had the clout to do whatever he wanted, even though he had never won an NFL game.
Then things didn’t get much better once the season began.
Meyer didn’t fly home with his team after a Thursday night loss and was photographed with a blond girl at a bar. Then you had No. 1 pick Trevor Lawrence disagreeing with Meyer. Then there were reports about conflicts within the staff. Then there was his bad body language. And on Wednesday came the capper: former kicker Josh Lambo accused Meyer of not only bullying him, but actually kicking him.
On top of all this, the Jags were 2-11 and not showing many signs of improvement.
Jacksonville’s owner appeared to be ready to stand by Meyer, but Wednesday’s report likely was the tipping point.
Based on his body language, the firing comes as a relief for Meyer, who seemed to be miserable and mentally checked out.
Photo: Matt Pendleton-USA TODAY Sports
Allegations continue to pile up against Jacksonville Jaguars coach Urban Meyer regarding his treatment of players. There are even some hints about other stories that have not seen the light of day yet.
A tweet from Miami Dolphins linebacker Jerome Baker raised some eyebrows on Wednesday. Baker sent a cryptic tweet alluding to “karma,” which some felt was a veiled response to recent allegations against Meyer. Baker played for Ohio State from 2015-2017, spending three seasons under Meyer.
It’s possible that Baker’s tweet has absolutely nothing to do with the Meyer situation. However, his history with the former Ohio State coach and the timing of the tweet certainly seem like more than just coincidences.
The Jaguars have been rocked by Saturday’s report alleging multiple confrontations and significant tension between Meyer, players, and coaches. Things got worse for Meyer on Wednesday, as a former Jaguars player made a pretty shocking allegation against the coach.
Former Jacksonville Jaguars kicker Josh Lambo claims he was kicked by head coach Urban Meyer prior to a preseason game in August.
Lambo, a former All-Pro, had missed a field goal in two consecutive exhibition games, and was warming up for the final tilt against Dallas in August. The kicker claims Meyer approached him and kicked him in the leg while urging Lambo to “make your f—ing kicks.”
“I’m in a lunge position. Left leg forward, right leg back,” Lambo told Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times. “… Urban Meyer, while I’m in that stretch position, comes up to me and says, ‘Hey Dips–t, make your f–king kicks!’ And kicks me in the leg.
“It certainly wasn’t as hard as he could’ve done it, but it certainly wasn’t a love tap. Truthfully, I’d register it as a five (out of 10). Which in the workplace, I don’t care if it’s football or not, the boss can’t strike an employee. And for a second, I couldn’t believe it actually happened. Pardon my vulgarity, I said, ‘Don’t you ever f–king kick me again!’ And his response was, ‘I’m the head ball coach, I’ll kick you whenever the f–k I want.'”
Lambo told the Times that Meyer approached him in private the next day and the kicker once again registered his disapproval of how Meyer treated him. Meyer accepted that, but then threatened to get rid of Lambo, citing how the kicker spoke to him in practice in front of the rest of the team. Lambo also informed his agent of the incident, and it was passed on to the Jaguars’ legal counsel. The Jaguars argued that Lambo was given the chance to meet with the team’s legal counsel, but Lambo said he has “no recollection” of receiving such an offer.
In a statement to the Times, Meyer disputed Lambo’s characterization of the incident.
“Josh’s characterization of me and this incident is completely inaccurate, and there are eyewitnesses to refute his account,” Meyer said. “(General manager) Trent (Baalke) and I met with him on multiple occasions to encourage his performance, and this was never brought up. I was fully supportive of Josh during his time with the team and wish him nothing but the best.”
Lambo was released after missing three field goals in the season opener and is currently a free agent. He said he decided to speak publicly about the incident after seeing reports about Meyer’s confrontations with players and coaches in recent weeks.
Though Meyer denies Lambo’s allegation, it’s still likely to increase the heat on the Jacksonville coach. The coach’s response to the initial report was off-putting for some, and it certainly sounded like his future with the organization was murky even before this new claim surfaced.
Photo: Joseph Maiorana-USA Today Sports
Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver Marvin Jones Jr. opened up on Wednesday for the first time about his reported confrontation with head coach Urban Meyer.
One of the key parts of a bombshell report about Meyer’s conduct as coach of the Jaguars was an alleged spat between Meyer and Jones. Jones objected to criticisms of the wide receiver group from Meyer, and the spat became so heated that Jones reportedly left the team facility and had to be coaxed back by assistant coaches.
“I would just say this: there was something that was brought to my attention that I didn’t like too much,” Jones said Wednesday, via John Shipley of Jaguar Report. “I approached him about it, and we talked and we handled it like grown men. That’s all I have to say about that.”
Jones does not have much to gain by inflaming tensions publicly. That is especially true in light of Meyer’s public message to whoever leaked the story. The wide receiver may be downplaying what happened between himself and Meyer, but it certainly serves as confirmation that something happened.
Photo: Nov 28, 2021; Jacksonville, Florida, USA; Jacksonville Jaguars wide receiver Marvin Jones Jr. (11) talks with a teammate before the game against the Atlanta Falcons at TIAA Bank Field. Mandatory Credit: Matt Pendleton-USA TODAY Sports
Jacksonville Jaguars owner Shad Khan has insisted he is not going to make any rash decisions about Urban Meyer’s future with the team, but the head coach might not be feeling like his job is all that secure in the wake of Khan’s latest remarks.
Khan spoke with reporters on Monday about all the negative headlines his team has generated this season. He said he is not going to act “helter-skelter on emotion.” Khan also noted that he stood by former Jaguars coaches Gus Bradley and Doug Marrone for several years when things weren’t going well, but he the Meyer situation has been different.
“I think we have a history of looking at the facts and doing the right thing,” Khan said, via Mark Long of The Associated Press. “Wins and losses, this is a little bit different. I’m going to reflect on all of that and do what’s the right thing for the team and the right thing for the city.”
It’s notable that Khan said “this is a little bit different.” Past Jaguars teams have piled up losses, but there was never the media frenzy that has followed Meyer. Khan hinted that he will take that into account.
“What concerns me is obviously wins and losses,” Khan said. “But, hey, we’re sitting here, we haven’t had a lot of wins. What’s different about this thing is you have losses and you have drama. In the past, it was like, you were, ‘It’s like the lowly Jaguars’ and everyone left you alone. Now, the scrutiny we have is really something different.”
No one expected Meyer to turn things around for the Jaguars in his first NFL season. That said, there have been plenty of concerning moments that reflect poorly on the coach. Khan has no choice but to take those into consideration.
Some of the scrutiny Meyer has faced is probably unfair, but that might not matter to Khan. If the situation has gotten as bad behind closed doors as some say it has, the Jaguars will need a change sooner rather than later.
Photo: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
The Jacksonville Jaguars have been left reeling after allegations regarding Urban Meyer’s treatment of his players and staff leaked. A new report indicates that coaches who may have leaked information that was the source of the report heard from ownership. The message from ownership seemed to echo Meyer’s.
Jaguars owner Shad Khan addressed the team’s coaching staff in person after the report about Meyer went public on Saturday, according to NFL reporter Josina Anderson. While Khan expressed his support for the coaching staff, he made clear he disliked the report going public and warned coaches against leaking stories to the media.
This might not have been the message Jaguars coaches were hoping to hear. While it wasn’t quite as blunt as Meyer’s message on Sunday, it doesn’t sound like Khan’s message was particularly encouraging, either.
Meyer reportedly called his assistant coaches “losers,” which Meyer essentially confirmed himself.
Such a message is especially jarring coming from Meyer, who has won just two NFL games as a head coach. The assistants probably would have liked more backing from Khan than they may have received.
Photo: Oct 17, 2021; London, England, United Kingdom; Jacksonville Jaguars owner Shad Khan (Shahid Khan) watches from the sidelines during an NFL International Series game against the Miami Dolphins at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Urban Meyer appears to be entering the “I’m an old man, I’m confused!” stage of his time in Jacksonville.
The Jaguars head coach sounded absolutely clueless on Monday with his latest quote about the team. Meyer was asked about the playing time of rookie safety Andre Cisco, the team’s third-round draft pick.
“Cisco is playing a little bit more, I believe,” replied Meyer, per Jaguars writer Demetrius Harvey. “I don’t have his numbers in front of me.”
The problem, as Harvey pointed out, was that Cisco did not play a single defensive snap in Week 14 against Tennessee.
Cisco did play 17 special-teams snaps, but even that number was the fewest he had played in weeks. By just about any interpretation, Meyer was off line.
Perhaps Meyer’s quote is not all that surprising considering how disengaged he looked after Jacksonville’s latest defeat. But you would at least expect a head coach in the NFL to have a basic idea of the personnel on the field for the game that his team just played. The only good news for the 2-11 Jaguars is that this whole circus could soon be coming to a merciful end.
Photo: Oct 10, 2021; Jacksonville, Florida, USA; Jacksonville Jaguars head coach Urban Meyer reacts during the second half against the Tennessee Titans at TIAA Bank Field. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports
It would be an understatement to say that Urban Meyer’s first NFL season has been a rough one, but Jacksonville Jaguars owner Shad Khan has given no indication that he is on the verge of firing the coach. According to a new report, that could change if the Jags lose in Week 15.
Tony Pauline of ProFootballNetwork.com spoke with people close to the situation in Jacksonville who believe Meyer “could get fired this week.” The Jaguars will host the Houston Texans at home on Sunday.
“If the Jaguars lose to a terrible Houston team next Sunday, I don’t see him surviving,” a source told Pauline.
Jaguars assistant head coach Charlie Strong has been mentioned as a potential candidate to replace Meyer. If the Jaguars lose on Sunday, there’s a belief that Strong could step in as interim head coach, presumably with a chance to land the full-time job during the offseason.
The Jaguars fell to 2-11 with their 20-0 loss to the Tennessee Titans on Sunday. They were not expected to be good this year, but the off-field drama has been even more concerning than the product on the field.
According to Pauline, Meyer has “lost everyone in the building” including players, coaches and staff. A report on Saturday made similar claims.
Meyer looked totally checked out after the Titans loss. The Jaguars would have to eat a ton of money if they fired him after less than a year, but you have to wonder how ugly they are willing to let the situation get.
Photo: Matt Pendleton-USA TODAY Sports
The Jacksonville Jaguars were blown out again on Sunday, and Urban Meyer could not have looked more defeated after the game. However, the coach did feel fiery enough to issue a threat related to the recent stories that have come out about him and the team.
After his team’s 20-0 loss to the Tennessee Titans, Meyer was asked what can be done to fix the compounding issues the Jaguars seem to have. He made reference to Saturday’s report about the dysfunction between him and his players and coaching staff. Meyer called it “garbage” that information is being leaked. He said any member of the team who acts as a source will be fired on the spot.
Tom Pelissero of NFL Network published a report on Saturday that outlined some of the issues Meyer and the Jaguars have had in recent weeks. He wrote about an alleged argument Meyer had with veteran wide receiver Marvin Jones. The report also claimed Meyer has called his assistant coaches “losers” and challenged their resumes. Meyer has since confirmed that he’s hard on his coaching staff, though he denied calling them “losers.” He also said the argument with Jones never happened.
Meyer was so disgusted after Jacksonville’s loss on Sunday that he barely shook Mike Vrabel’s hand (video here). He also gave a one-word answer when a reporter pointed out how bad the Jaguars’ offensive line has played.
It’s hard to imagine things getting much worse in Jacksonville.
Photo: Joseph Maiorana-USA Today Sports
Jacksonville Jaguars coach Urban Meyer is not used to losing. He’s done a lot of it in 2021, though, and it certainly looks to be wearing on him.
Meyer looked almost lost on the field after Sunday’s defeat, a 20-0 loss to the Tennessee Titans. The loss dropped the Jaguars to 2-11 on the season. After the game, Meyer engaged Titans coach Mike Vrabel in one of the most terse postgame handshakes you will ever see, barely even making eye contact with his counterpart.
Meyer looks completely checked out. Perhaps he really thought he could mold the Jaguars into contenders overnight. At the very least, he certainly did not seem to expect things to get this bad.
The Jaguars coach has also had to confront a very unflattering report about his conduct in the leadup to this game. His sour mood is not really a surprise in light of that.