Sep. 26, 2016
Five candidates to be the next Jaguars head coach
The Jacksonville Jaguars (2-14) have not had the season that they were hoping for.
After a 21-20 loss to the Houston Texans this past Sunday, head coach Gus Bradley was fired after going 14-48 in parts of three seasons. The Jaguars have not made the playoffs since 2007, which was their last winning season (11-5). It was clear that Bradley was not getting the job done. Let's take a look at the top five candidates to be the Jaguars head coach in 2017.
5. Mike Shanahan
A two-time Super Bowl champion, Mike Shanahan made his name known during his tenure with the Denver Broncos from 1995 to 2008 when he won two Super Bowls.
However, Shanahan also had tenures with the Los Angeles Raiders and Washington Redskins with mixed results. John Elway won his two Super Bowls with Shanahan as his head coach, but Shanahan has only had one winning season outside of Denver in five years. Is Shanahan only able to win with one of the greatest quarterbacks in NFL history?
4. Scott Linehan
Scott Linehan is currently in his 28th season as a football coach across the college and NFL levels and is in his second season as the Dallas Cowboys offensive coordinator.
He has done a fantastic job in Dallas this season with its rookie quarterback Dak Prescott, who is looking like the next great quarterback. He has been able to balance the passing and rushing attack to get the most out of his rookie contributors, Prescott and running back Ezekiel Elliott.
Linehan was the St. Louis Rams head coach for two-and-a-half seasons and posted an 11-25 record. The Rams were in a transition period from their dominant teams in the late 90s and early 2000s and Linehan did not have a lot to work with.
After his success in Dallas, Jacksonville could use Linehan to come in and bring a new look to their offense and young quarterback Blake Bortles.
3. Mike Munchak
The Pittsburgh Steelers coach that has been talked about the most for head coaching positions has been offensive coordinator Todd Haley. However, offensive line coach Mike Munchak should be the one being considered for a head coaching position.
After a Hall of Fame career as an offensive lineman, Munchak was the Tennessee Titans offensive line coach from 1997 to 2010 then he became the head coach after 2010. In three seasons as head coach of the Titans, he went 22-26.
Then, in 2014, Munchak became the offensive line coach of the Steelers and turned their offensive line into one of the best offensive lines in football. The Jaguars offensive is struggling running the ball (97 rushing yards per game) behind a subpar offensive line. Bringing in Munchak and building around their offensive line could stabilize their offense.
2. Doug Marrone
Doug Marrone, who was the Jaguars offensive line coach, was named the interim head coach after Bradley was fired.
After leading the Bills to a combined 15-17 record in the 2013 and 2014 seasons, Marrone opted out of his contract. Marrone did a decent job with the Bills where he made Fred Jackson and C.J. Spiller one of the most dynamic running back duos in the NFL.
However, Marrone made his mark on the Bills by drafting quarterback E.J. Manuel, who has not lived up to expectations and lost his starting job in 2015 to Tyrod Taylor.
Marrone had his flaws as a head coach but he could build one of the best offensive lines in football, which is the new way to succeed like the Dallas Cowboys and Seattle Seahawks have demonstrated.
1. Tom Coughlin
Make the Jaguars great again! Tom Coughlin was the first coach in the Jaguars history spending eight seasons with the young franchise. He has also been their best coach in franchise history, with four playoff victories and two division titles.
After Jacksonville, Coughlin spent 2004-2015 with the New York Giants and drafted Eli Manning. Manning blossomed into one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL and a two-time Super Bowl champion. Coughlin’s downfall ultimately was a combination of the New York media, complacency, and an awful defense.
A change of scenery and a new challenge of coming back to his first NFL head coaching job should spark new life into the old-school coach. The Jaguars have a lot of talent but have not been able to put all the pieces together, Coughlin could bring back his expertise and make the Jaguars relevant again.