The Jacksonville Jaguars are making headlines for all the wrong reasons on Thursday.
On Tuesday’s episode of The Da Show, CBS Sports insider Pete Prisco said some players “aren’t thrilled” with head coach Urban Meyer’s coaching tactics.
“He’s got to change a few things. He brought a bunch of college-like things to the program, which I don’t necessarily agree with,” Prisco said, per Fox News. “And I’ve heard some of the players aren’t thrilled with him either.”
It’s yet another concerning occurrence in what’s been a rocky start for Meyer as he gets ready to coach in his first NFL regular-season game, a Sept. 12 contest against the Houston Texans.
I, for one, am not surprised to hear Meyer’s style is already wearing thin with some of his players. Just last week, we wrote about Tim Tebow’s release and the concern that his presence could have rubbed some the wrong way. The failed and embarrassing Tebow experiment is just one of many examples coming out of Florida over the last few months that would indicate things aren’t going as swimmingly as planned for Meyer in Jacksonville thus far.
Meyer isn’t the first coach to make the jump from college to the pros only to find out how contrasting the two levels are. No, we have Chip Kelly, Lane Kiffin, and to an extent, Nick Saban as previous examples of how difficult a transition it can be. It may sound obvious, but there’s a big difference between coaching a bunch of 20-year-old amateurs and 30-year-old grown men. You can’t treat them the same, and if Prisco’s report and its details are believed to be true, then that fact hasn’t apparently resonated with Meyer yet.
"[Meyer has] one of his assistants on the field during practice with a boom mic, telling everybody to hydrate and hustle and get to the next period," Prisco added.
That sounds like something you would do to motivate a student-athlete, not a professional NFL player.
For as successful as Meyer has been, and he’s been really successful as a football coach, the NFL represents a brand new challenge for him. We’ve always known he’s a strong leader and a team-first guy with a winning pedigree. We also know that he left his last two jobs at Florida and Ohio State under curious circumstances.
There’s an old saying that says winning heals all, and it’s true. Meyer’s history of winning is ultimately what attracted Jaguars owner Shad Khan to him in the first place. That’s where the main question lies. Will the Jaguars experience enough immediate success to bury all of the warning signs that are already there?
Meyer was hired to right the ship, but things appear to be as rocky as ever.
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