It’s safe to say Urban Meyer’s NFL coaching tenure has gotten off to a rough start with the Jaguars. Right now, Jacksonville is one of two teams yet to pick up a win, sitting at 0-4 (Detroit being the other team). Starting games strong and not being able to finish has been a constant theme for the Jaguars this year.
So far, Meyer has been the target of Jacksonville’s criticism for good reason. Whether it’s his short temper or his questionable decision-making, Meyer has left fans scratching their head. His latest incident in Columbus will only add fuel to the fire.
After losing to the Cincinnati Bengals last Thursday, Meyer decided not to travel back to Jacksonville with his team. Instead, he stayed in Columbus to spend extra time with family at his restaurant/bar, Urban Meyer’s Pint House. While his wife Shelley stayed at home and ate corn, Meyer was with his grandkids enjoying a nice dinner.
Later that night, multiple videos and a picture surfaced of Meyer doing much more than just eating dinner. The first video showed a young lady that wasn’t his wife, awkwardly dancing on Meyer’s arm. A second video showed Meyer touching the lady’s backside. And in case anyone had doubts about the person in those videos being him, a picture surfaced of Meyer and that same lady taking a selfie together.
Urban Meyer’s Press Conference
Meyer finally addressed the incident on Monday at a press conference, expressing his remorse: “I just apologized to the team and staff for being a distraction, it’s stupid. I explained everything that happened and owned it and, just stupid. I should not have myself in that kind of position.”
Meyer spent most of the press conference looking downwards; his face full of shame and guilt. He claims that a group of young adults pressured him to leave his family and take pictures with them: “They were trying to pull me out on the dance floor, screwing around, and I should have left.”
According to Michael Silver from Sports Illustrated, last weekend’s incident has only made things worse for Meyer, as he continues to lose the Jacksonville locker room. Though he addressed the team on Wednesday, he initially canceled the Monday team meeting, apologizing to each position group rather than apologizing to the team. Players had told Silver he seemed too scared to address the situation sincerely, and was laughed at once he left.
Jaguars owner Shad Khan released a statement, expressing his disappointment over the coach’s behavior: “What I will say is his conduct last weekend was inexcusable. I appreciate Urban’s remorse, which I believe is sincere. Now, he must regain our trust and respect. That will require a personal commitment from Urban to everyone who supports, represents or plays for our team.”
Urban Meyer’s time as head coach in Jacksonville has been littered with bad decisions; from hiring Chris Doyle, to signing Tim Tebow. The latest incident in Columbus can now be added to his list of poor decisions. Meyer should not be demonized for what he did, but it’s not a good look for him to abandon his team and get caught on camera dancing with young women, especially when his team is winless and he has a wife.
Shad Khan has a tough decision in front of him; should he get rid of Urban Meyer soon, or should Jacksonville ride out the rest of the season with him? The Jaguars are young and talented, with players like Trevor Lawrence, James Robinson, DJ Chark, and Laviska Shenault. So far, Meyer has done nothing to instill confidence in his team, creating distractions in the locker room as well as the office. His leash is getting shorter, and every mishap moves him closer to his termination.
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