Meyer lasted just 13 games in his first ever NFL gig and led the Jaguars to a 2-11 record. Apart from the dismal performance on the field, the former Florida and Ohio State coach was at the center of a number of other unsavory stories that ultimately fractured his trust with his players, his coaching staff and the organization's ownership.
When he was hired last winter, Meyer was considered a risky choice because of his lack of experience at the NFL level. Now that he's on his way out the door, it's hard not to think back to what the Jaguars could've had if they had gone another direction.
On Thursday morning, not long after Meyer officially got the boot, ESPN's
FWIW: When the Jaguars hired Urban Meyer last January, they chose him over Kansas City OC Eric Bienemy, San Francisco 49ers DC Robert Saleh, former Buccanneers/Atlanta Falcons interim coach Raheem Morris and Tennessee OC Arthur Smith.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) December 16, 2021
">Adam Schefter reminded fans in Jacksonville of the other head coaching options that were in the running for the job last offseason. The four names that Schefter highlighted were Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bienemy, 49ers defensive coordinator Robert Saleh, Falcons interim head coach Raheem Morris and Titans offensive coordinator Arthur Smith.
Two of those individuals, Saleh and Smith, were able to land head coaching jobs of their own with the New York Jets and the Falcons, respectively. Bienemy remained with a 9-4 Chiefs team and Morris made way for the Los Angeles to become the Rams new defensive coordinator.
All four of those candidates boast tons of coaching experience at the NFL level and could've been well-suited to take over the Jaguars job last year. At the very least, they probably could've kept the focus on football and prevented the drama that surrounded the organization with Meyer at the helm.
Instead, Khan and Jacksonville opted to go for the much riskier option. That hire backfired, leaving the Jaguars in the same position they were just a year ago.