After the way recent public relations disasters have turned out for companies and organizations, you’d think they’d look into and consider the prior actions of those they affiliate themselves with. Perhaps, they’d do a full vetting process to fully assure that no hire will detriment the public standing of the franchise. Instead, the Jaguars, of all teams, needing a culture change instead they just continue to prove the justification of the many prior complaints about them from the NFLPA and others who’ve sent them scrutiny. The Chris Doyle saga that has unfolded over the past week has truly been astounding. He has since resigned amid the scrutiny that all sides involved have faced in this matter.
The Jaguars and Urban Meyer both have been in the public eye enough for their past antics, Urban Meyer and the Zac Smith situation at Ohio St, his health issues that caused him to resign at Florida. The Jaguars had a lot of drama with numerous players including Jalen Ramsey, Leonard Fournette and others. So when it was announced the Jaguars had hired former Iowa strength coach Chris Doyle, the same Chris Doyle who was fired for using racist remarks towards players. Doyle was hired as the Jaguars Director of Sports Performance, and he has only been out of work since June after an agreement to sever ties with the University of Iowa. Now it’s easy for me to sit here and talk about the hire, and how it’s bullshit that a coach with allegations of racist behavior gets hired, but I won’t go down that road, other outlets can articulate those thoughts more eloquently than I can, but what I will say is simply… what did you expect? The Kahn’s have been an ownership criticized before for the way they handled team affairs, and hiring Urban Meyer has it’s own controversy and challenge as a college coach who’s never coached in the NFL before.
If you want a picture of what the future might look like in Jacksonville, consider what occurred in Philadelphia with Chip Kelly, or Dick Vermeil in KC. You’ll get some success but over time either he’ll get non-committal about the future or his health issues with allow him to walk away, and I’m sure there will be controversy. Especially after the last 18 months they had, I don’t see the next 18-36 months being any different, even with Lawrence at QB. The story about the Jaguars now is about a strength coach getting a privilege from the good ol’ boy network that is the National Football League, sure that’s the way things are with networking. But the real story lies within the two parties involved in hiring Chris Doyle, they’re solely responsible for this hire. Especially when the Jaguars Head Coach has never previously been a coworker of Doyle’s, but seeing the Iowa ties, it’s definitely within the Big Ten network for sure. Seeing all the talk from fans and even a message pushed in the mainstream about the lack of hires for potential black candidates like Eric Bieniemy, Todd Bowles, Jim Caldwell, and you know the names that get brought up and get beat out for the Head Coach who most likely is willing to have less say upstairs….
It’s simply astonishing PR wise that this even got the okay, but the Khans and Meyer are no strangers to operating to the beat of their own drum, and no matter about the potential future they’re selling to Lawrence and fans. Meyer is no more a sure thing long term than Tom Coughlin was coming in after being ousted by the Maras as coach of the New York Giants. Meyer lasted six seasons at Florida and while winning two national championships on teams stacked with NFL talent, there have been many stories written on those Florida teams, some 30 for 30 type of tales. Even after his controversial exit in Gainesville with AD Jeremy Foley and his health, he resigned, did broadcast work for a few years and then took over at Ohio State after Jim Tressel’s unceremonious departure in Columbus and a 6-6 season for the Buckeyes under now Bearcats HC Luke Fickell. Despite winning a national championship, and some blue chip recruiting success still had to deal with a controversy with WR coach Zac Smith, family member of former Ohio St HC Earle Bruce who faced some serious allegations and it brought the school down in the public eye, on top of the wrestling scandal involving Rep. Jim Jordan. Long story short, controversy follows coach Meyer, even unemployed there was plenty of speculation about links to USC, Texas, and the Ohio State AD job as Gene Smith is linked to the Pac 12 commissioner position that recently opened up.
As this pertains to the Jaguars it’s clear that in their brief almost 30 year history, the Jaguars have been close to Super Bowls in 1996, 1999, and in 2017. The problem they had was sustaining success, the solution seemed to be throwing money at the problems and much like the often struggling Lions, Jets, Dolphins, and Raiders… it’s led to numerous hires in the front office and on the sideline, with many wasted draft picks due to lack of faith in the organization, better opportunities to win, or simply not being used properly or retiring/holding out like Telvin Smith and others. Urban Meyer does bring a culture of winning, sure, as an Ohio St fan I know all about Urban Meyer. It’s still the Jaguars run by the Khans and instead of a control freak named Tom Coughlin, you now have Urban Meyer, an authoritarian minded coach, though successful, brings plenty of baggage, and this move smells more Barry Switzer than it does Jimmie Johnson to me. I give Urban three years tops in Jacksonville, heck it wouldn’t be the first time he upset fans in the state of Florida.