CBS Sports says Urban Meyer is on the hottest seat in the NFL



Just under a month ago, things couldn’t have been going worse for Jacksonville Jaguars coach Urban Meyer. After a Thursday Night Football loss to the Bengals, Meyer declined to travel back on the team flight and eventually became the story as video of him and an unidentified young woman at a bar went viral.

It was certainly a bad look for the first-time NFL coach, and after the team followed that up with a blowout loss to the Titans, many wondered if Meyer’s tenure could be close to an end after just five games.

But then the Jags won in London against the Miami Dolphins, ending their 20-game losing streak and showing signs of life in the process. That seemed to take the pressure of Meyer quite a bit, but not entirely.

According to CBS Sports’ Patrik Walker, Meyer still occupies the hottest seat in the NFL.

When the Jaguars found a way to pull out a narrow win over the Dolphins in London going into their bye week, it became the first good thing Meyer has done for the organization, although it felt more attributable to Trevor Lawrence and the defense than the questionable play-calling of Meyer. Stopping a 20-game losing streak is never a bad thing, admittedly, but if you think it’s enough to get Meyer out of this No. 1 seat, you’re crazy. Given all he’s already put the Jaguars through, he’s going to need a lot more wins before his seat cools even one degree.

If there’s a blueprint for how to do everything right when taking the reins as a first-time NFL head coach, you’d have to presume there’s an antithesis that lists steps for virtually guaranteeing you’ll be fired before you get a shot at Year 2. If the latter didn’t exist before, it does now, and Meyer is the author. Anything Meyer could do wrong after joining the Jacksonville Jaguars this offseason, he’s either done it, is doing it or will probably get it done in the next several weeks. The Ohio party controversy was simply another feather in his controversy-dipped cap, but the dysfunction began with the hiring, defense of, and immediate firing of Iowa strength and conditioning coach Chris Doyle — a man with a history of racist accusations against him.

Things continued to spiral out of control from that point to now, as the Jaguars sit at 1-5 on the year with Lawrence, a rookie, showing more composure during the winless stretch than his own coach. Meyer made things worse for himself with postgame quotes that note he “doesn’t micromanage who’s on the field” and that leadership of the team “falls on the players” as opposed to the head coach hired to lead them. He has also come under the probing of the NFLPA after a media gaffe wherein he admitted he factors COVID-19 vaccination into roster decisions.

All of this would be unacceptable behavior for a good coach, let alone one with only one win in his first six tries and whose offense and defense both rank toward the bottom of the league. Meyer has already been put on notice by owner Shad Khan, so figuring out how to stay in the win column is non-negotiable.

It’s hard to argue with any of the points that Walker makes here, but at the same time, the Jaguars knew what they were in for when they hired a first-time NFL coach to oversee what was going to be a lengthy rebuild process. Especially given owner Shad Khan’s track record of loyalty to coaches (perhaps longer than they’ve earned), it’s hard to imagine the franchise will look to make a change this year unless things get considerably worse.

Meyer needs to win a few more games, that much is certain. But with a rapidly developing rookie quarterback, that seems to be within the realm of possibility. Jacksonville has a good chance to string together a second-straight win this week against a Seattle team that is struggling mightily without quarterback Russell Wilson.

A win on the west coast in front of one of football’s most hostile environments won’t come easy, but it would be a major step forward for this team.


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