Doug Marrone is still, as these words are being written, head coach of the Jaguars. But that doesn’t figure to be the case for long as Jacksonville wraps up either a 1-15 or 2-14 season, already assured of the No. 1 pick in this year’s NFL Draft.
It’s generally a pretty sure shot that you’re gone as a coach when your employer already knows who it wants to hire to replace you…
…and has a backup plan if that guy doesn’t want the job.
Urban Meyer, at least, is currently not coaching somewhere, so connecting him to the Jaguars, at least from the standpoint of the Jaguars leaking it and getting the reaction of “hey, the Jaguars are thinking big!” makes sense. Ryan Day, who replaced Meyer at Ohio State and has the Buckeyes in the national title game… does not make so much sense.
Why in the world would Day, who’s 41 years old and has been Ohio State’s head coach for two seasons, want to leave a job where he makes more money ($4.5 million a year) than the Jaguars pay their current head coach ($3 million)? Why would Day want to leave a job where he can contend for a national championship every year, with autonomy over all personnel decisions, to go to one of the worst-run franchises in the NFL and have a tremendous opportunity to be unemployed by 2024? Why would Day give up a job where he’s on track to be the kind of legend who gets a statue built of him in Columbus to maybe someday be kind of fondly remembered alongside Tom Coughlin?
“Ego” is always a plausible answer, but Ohio State is a better job than Jacksonville, and if Day does want to leave the Buckeyes for the NFL, surely he’ll be able to find a better situation either this offseason or in the future. Even with the projected addition of Trevor Lawrence at quarterback with the No. 1 pick — or maybe Day’s current quarterback, Justin Fields? — it’s not like the Jaguars are going to be playoff contenders in the next couple of years.
So maybe Day can take over for Meyer again sometime soon. In the meantime, congratulations to, hmm… let’s see… Bucs defensive coordinator and former Jets head coach Todd Bowles, maybe? … on what’s sure to be a very serious interview for a Jacksonville job for which he is sure to receive careful consideration and not just be brought in to satisfy a league rule.