After two years as head coach of the Buffalo Bills from 2013 to 2014, Marrone infamously opted out of contract after the team came under new ownership. He went 15-17 in two seasons as Bills coach, but led the Bills to a 9-7 season in 2014, which was the first winning season for the franchise since 2004.
Thought to be a hot head-coaching candidate at the time, Marrone was passed over for several open positions, most notably the New York Jets, who hired Todd Bowles. Marrone has spent the past two years mostly in anonymity in Jacksonville — aside from a memorable defense of the New York rap scene.
With no guaranteed money left on the contract, cutting House saves Jacksonville $6 million on the salary cap. NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported last week the Jaguars likely would release House if they couldn’t trade him away.
The move leaves the Jags with just four corners on the roster heading into free agency. Behind first-round stud Jalen Ramsey, Aaron Colvin, Josh Johnson and Doran Grant round out the position. Prince Amukamara, who took over the starting gig last season, is set to hit free agency. Jacksonville reportedly is aiming at re-signing the veteran corner.
With their first two picks, the Jags have immediately upgraded their running game, which takes pressure off the enigmatic Blake Bortles.
Over the last five seasons, the Jaguars have the NFL’s worst rushing offense (92.1 rush YPG since 2012), per NFL Research. That trend should end in 2017.
Khan mentioned that general manager Dave Caldwell “agreed and will now be charged with exploring all options to hire the best head coach possible” to lead the Jaguars. Khan also mentioned the team’s “extremely talented” roster, another sign of support for Caldwell. NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported that Caldwell will name an interim head coach on Monday, and added Bradley was on the team flight back to Jacksonville.
This could be seen as an act of mercy for Bradley. In a statement after last season, Khan said that Bradley knew the Jaguars had to be “well above” where they finished a season ago when the team finished 5-11. The Jaguars spent big money in free agency and instead took a step back. It was only a matter of time before Bradley was fired, and Sunday’s collapse provided a good moment for a clean break.
See, I don’t even know yet if I’m picking Jacksonville to make the playoffs. But that’s the point. Even just a few weeks ago, who in their right mind envisioned South Carolina competing for a national title — in basketball? You can’t be Cinderella if everyone assumes you’ll be the belle of the ball. And let’s be honest: Jacksonville has some serious questions heading into the 2017 campaign. Allow me to address those right off the bat.
First of all, many folks expected a breakthrough performance by the Jaguars last season. And they disappointed in a major way, going 3-13 and finishing deep in the AFC South cellar. But let’s take a closer look at that 3-13 for a second. Jacksonville wasn’t getting blown off the field. The Jaguars lost eight games by seven points or fewer. And Jacksonville’s most impressive win — a 38-17 pasting of the Titans in Week 16 — came in Doug Marrone’s first game as the interim coach, replacing the fired Gus Bradley. In related news: Marrone earned the permanent gig and will be leading the Jags in 2017. This is no small thing. As I said a few weeks ago, Gus Bradley is a nice guy … but a terrible head coach. Marrone is a large upgrade. And now that he has Tom Coughlin running the front office? Yeah, I think Jacksonville’s pointed in the right direction.
The NFL announced Monday a decision on the location of the Jacksonville Jaguars game against the Tennessee Titans, scheduled for 1 p.m. ET on Sunday in Jacksonville, is pending after Hurricane Irma slammed the city over the weekend.
Jacksonville is dealing with “record storm surge and immense flooding,” CNN reported, with many parts of downtown, including streets near EverBank Field, under feet of water.