Stories surface about Urban Meyer’s run-ins with players and coaches
Jacksonville Jaguars head coach Urban Meyer has been unable to translate his collegiate success to the NFL thus far. The Jaguars currently own a 2-10 record, tied for the second-worst in the league with the Houston Texans.
Meyer is now at the center of internal conflict with his players and coaches, per NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero, who also reports that people in league circles wonder whether Meyer may be out of Jacksonville after just one season.
Months of tension surrounding #Jaguars coach Urban Meyer has boiled over with multiple run-ins with players and other coaches in recent weeks, renewing questions in league circles about whether Meyer could be out after just one tumultuous season.https://t.co/9Eqdajvlg1
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) December 11, 2021
Pelissero’s article notes multiple shocking stories coming out of Jacksonville. One features veteran wide receiver Marvin Jones.
The article reads, “(Jones) — one of the locker room’s most respected and mild-mannered veterans — became so angry with Meyer’s public and private criticism of the receiver group that he left the facility until other staff members convinced him to come back and had a heated argument with Meyer during practice.”
Another story claims that Meyer “delivered a biting message that he’s a winner and his assistant coaches are losers … challenging each coach individually to explain when they’ve ever won and forcing them to defend their résumés.”
Last but not least, Meyer apparently benched starting running back James Robinson after an early fumble in last week’s loss to the Rams and prevented running backs coach Bernie Parmalee from allowing Robinson to re-enter the game. He did not change his stance until quarterback Trevor Lawrence questioned him about it. Meyer insisted that Carlos Hyde – who played for him at Ohio State – remain in the game.
Tensions have reached a near-breaking point where Meyer could be out after just one year. Meyer has had public gaffes, puzzling personnel choices, and all-in-all a disappointing campaign heading into Week 14 of the 2021 season despite having a highly-regarded quarterback prospect under center in Trevor Lawrence.
The irony in all of this is that at this time last year the national media was adamant that Lawrence avoid the New York Jets at all costs. Now, Lawrence’s development is being hindered in Jacksonville by a head coaching conundrum and poor surrounding talent.
The “Jaguars being a disaster with Urban Meyer” was the easiest thing in the world to spot coming into the season. Yet, not so strangely, “Trevor Lawrence should refuse to play for the #Jets” remained the hot angle. Folks were even upset Jets didn’t land Meyer via No. 2 pick. https://t.co/cZV3rS7Ztx
— Robby Sabo (@RobbySabo) December 11, 2021
Dubbed by many as the best quarterback prospect since Andrew Luck, Lawrence had scouts and analysts fawning over his football skills and resumé. Meanwhile, Adam Gase and the Jets worked their way toward his services with an 0-13 start to the season.
It wasn’t until the Jets shockingly beat both the Los Angeles Rams and Cleveland Browns (two playoff teams) that the Jaguars swooped into the first pick and drafted Lawrence. With the Jets out of the picture, the media no longer felt the need to “save” Lawrence from entering the NFL on a downright awful team.
Jeremy Schapp of ESPN was one of the most vocal leaders of the narrative that Lawrence should avoid New York. Schapp put out some potent quotes claiming that the then 0-12 Jets are “undeserving” of Trevor Lawrence.
“If we really prioritize winning, if winning is all that matters, why do we reward losing? Why would we condemn Lawrence to a future with the New York Jets?”, Schapp said.
In American sports, we reward failure. Why? Why should @Trevorlawrence be sacrificed on the altar of competitive balance? Is it good for the game? No. What have the @NYJets done to deserve him? Nothing. My parting shot for @otlonespn: pic.twitter.com/VSII38dOG9
— Jeremy Schaap (@JeremySchaap) December 12, 2020
Why were the Jaguars not viewed on the same level of awful as the Jets? It’s puzzling for sure, especially considering they lost 15 games in a row after their Week 1 win in 2020 and finished with a worse record than the Jets.
When the Jaguars went on to hire Urban Meyer, many around the league were very skeptical of the hire. A big reason why Meyer even left Ohio State was the ability to draft someone like Lawrence with the No. 1 overall pick; however, the NFL transition hasn’t been easy for college coaches in the past — even if it involves the No. 1 pick.
Now, fears about Meyer are being realized.
Meyer has done Lawrence no favors to help him be successful, and months of tension are finally coming to a boiling point. He will have to find a way to prove his worth over the final five games of the season, or he may be just one-and-done.
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