Urban Meyer Fired from Jags After Only 13 Games

by Josh Lanier
Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)

The Urban Meyer experiment in Jacksonville is over. The Jaguars fired him Wednesday after he led the team to a 2-11 start in his first season as head coach.

The team’s owner Shad Khan said he lost trust in Meyer as a leader.

“After deliberation over many weeks and a thorough analysis of the entirety of Urban’s tenure with our team, I am bitterly disappointed to arrive at the conclusion that an immediate change is imperative for everyone,” Khan said in a statement. “I informed Urban of the change this evening. As I stated in October, regaining our trust and respect was essential. Regrettably, it did not happen.”

The team lost to the Titans 20-0 on Sunday. Khan said Darrel Bevell, the Jaguars’ offensive coordinator, will serve as interim head coach. This was Jacksonville’s 10th season in 11 years with 10 or more losses, ESPN said.

There doesn’t seem to be a final straw for Urban Meyer but a mountain of staws. Controversies marred his time in Jacksonville since he arrived. Players reportedly complained to the press anonymously multiple times about how he treated them and other coaches and questioned his leadership abilities.

Players seemed fed up with the behind-the-scenes problems. Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence said Wednesday that the “drama” needed to end if the team hoped to win.

Calls to fire Meyer began after the Jaguars lost their fourth straight game to open the season. Shortly after the loss to Cincinnati, a video of Meyer dancing at a nightclub with a woman who is not his wife went viral. He apologized for the incident.

This was Meyer’s first year as an NFL head coach. His tenure in college football was much more successful. He won three national championships — two with Florida and one with Ohio State — and compiled an overall record of 187-32.

Ex-Kicker: Urban Meyer Kicked Me During Practice

Josh Lambo, the Jacksonville Jags former kicker, said Urban Meyer kicked him in the leg during a team practice. Lambo said Meyer was mad because he missed two field goals in the preseason.

“I’m in a lunge position. Left leg forward, right leg back,” Lambo told the Tampa Bay Times. “… Urban Meyer, while I’m in that stretch position, comes up to me and says, ‘Hey dips—, make your f——g kicks.’ And kicks me in the leg.”

Lambo said Meyer often called him and other special teams players something like “s–tbag.” He added that Meyer didn’t kick him as hard as he could but hard enough to send a message.

“Truthfully, I’d register it as a five (out of 10),” Lambo said of the kick. “Which in the workplace, I don’t care if it’s football or not, the boss can’t strike an employee. And for a second, I couldn’t believe it actually happened. Pardon my vulgarity, I said, ‘Don’t you ever f- king kick me again!’ And his response was, ‘I’m the head ball coach, I’ll kick you whenever the f–k I want.’ “

Meyer, however, said it didn’t happen, and he has witnesses to back him up. No one has come forward to corroborate either side of the story.