Savior or Just Another Clown?
Updated: Feb 10
The Jacksonville Jaguars recently hired Doug Pederson to be the team's new head coach. Now, the question is whether this move is a step in the right direction for the organization, or is Pederson just another proverbial clown in the circus that perenially resides in Duvall.
However the Pederson tenure ends in Jacksonville, it can't be any worse than the disaster that was Urban Meyer. We tried to warn you Jacksonville, we told you not to hire Meyer, but did you listen? No! The man was a walking PR nightmare, every week there was a news story about his incompetence. Now, the Jaguars were always a laughing stock in the league, but they wore their lolcow badge with silent dignity. Meyer singlehandedly turned the franchise into a circus, not only was the team terrible but every week ESPN headlines were circulated to the mass audience about how terrible they were. Thank the lord, team owner, Shad Khan finally came to his senses and sent Meyer to an early retirement. Congratulations Meyer on being the last college coach to be hired for an NFL head coaching job for the foreseeable future. Your legacy of building winning college teams and hoisting three national titles will be forever marred by your pisspoor scandalous performance in the NFL.
It was clear after Meyer that the Jaguars needed to wipe the slate clean and wash off the stench left behind. Instead, Khan chose to retain the much-maligned Trent Baalke as GM. A tumor needs to be removed completely or else it will grow back, as long as Baalke remains, the tumor is still present. As for Khan, his kickass mustache may help him close business deals, but it gives him no help whatsoever in running a football team. His poor judge of character over his ten years in Duvall is more than enough to substantiate this claim.
As mentioned before, the Jaguars needed some fresh blood in the organization. In my opinion, the new head coach should have been someone young and moldable without the baggage of past failures and serious questions of competency that the Jaguars have hired in the past such as Urban Meyer, Doug Marrone, and Gus Bradley. The new coach should have been someone with offensive experience and the ability to develop Trevor Lawrence into the savior of the franchise. In early February, the Jaguars hired Doug Pederson to be the next head coach. Pederson checks several of the boxes that I laid out above, he is an offensive-minded guy and could work well with Lawrence. ESPN and Jaguars fans have praised the signing, believing the team is finally ready to turn the corner.
Let's pump the brakes guys. While I don't think the Pederson signing is a terrible move, I certainly don't think it was the best move for the franchise. Don't forget that Pederson's tenure in Philidelphia ended in disgrace only three years after guiding the franchise to its first Super Bowl title. He was touted as an offensive genius, with the keys to unlocking a quarterback's true potential. Indeed he turned Carson Wentz and Nick Foles into supermen during the 2017-2018 season, but what happened after that? Carson Wentz regressed terribly and never again reached the plateau that he achieved during that magical year. The same can be said for Doug Pederson, his offenses never finished above 14th during his other four years and the Eagles were firmly entrenched as one of the most turnover-prone teams in 2018-2020. The fact that the Eagles were in the playoffs in 2018 and 2019 with a 9-7 record is more of a testament to their terrible division rather than being a good team. So when I hear people say that they can't wait to see how Pederson unlocks Lawrence's potential, I can't help but be doubtful. Everyone thought Pederson was some sort of quarterback guru with Carson Wentz until it became clear the Wentz sucked and Pederson was a fraud. Both would end up being run out of town. The more I watched the Eagles, the more I picked up on stubbornness vibes coming from Pederson. He had a vision on how he wanted the offense to run and was unrelenting in his pursuit of it. Never mind the fact that Wentz really just didn't fit with the scheme, Pederson was gonna do things his way. The draft choice of Jalen Hurts in 2020 signaled the end of an era, Pederson's fate was essentially tied with that of Wentz. Pederson desperately tried to prop up Wentz during the season, but the jig was up. Wentz was benched for good during a week 13 game at Lambeau, a white flag from Pederson, and a sign that the organization was ready to move on.
So should we doom the Jaguars/Pederson marriage just because both have experienced some messy divorces in the past? Absolutely not! Jacksonville may not have had a coach finish with a winning record over the course of his tenure since Tom Coughlin, but there is certainly some potential in the current roster. Additionally, Pederson may not be the coach we used to think he was, but perhaps he can wrangle this bottomfeeder team into mediocrity in a few short years.