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Jacksonville Jaguars

Jaguars have to stick with Gardner Minshew

Florida Football Insiders

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Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

Forget about the cute promotional mustaches being passed out to the fans. Forget about the guaranteed money the Jaguar put in front of Nick Foles back in March. Right now, the team has won four times in six games, it’s in the playoff conversation and it’s in large part because of rookie QB, Gardner Minshew.

And whether or not Foles is healthy enough to return either in London Sunday against the Texans or after the Jaguars bye week, it’s obvious what coach Doug Marrone and the organization should do.

Or should we say, not do.

Nothing.

They can’t take Minshew out at this point.

Sunday’s latest display about what the former Washington State QB brings to the current 2019 version of the Jags showed you all that you need to know. He has accuracy- completing 22 of 34 passes for another 279 yards and three more scores Sunday. He has poise, as he is staying away from turnovers unlike Jets 2nd year QB Sam Darnold. Darnold threw three picks Sunday and basically undid his team’s chances to win.

And most of all, look at the way his teammates respond to Minshew. Celebrations after TDs, the engagement with his teammates on the sideline, everything that Minshew projects is leadership and winning.

So, why would you want to mess with that in the short term?

Yes, Foles was given the largest guaranteed contract ever for a Jags quarterback back during free agency, but he was hurt right away in the first quarter of game one. And his time may still come at some point in this season, if Minshew starts to falter or worse, suffers an injury, himself.

However, the results are the results and the Jaguars are winning.

Yes, some of it is the power running of Leonard Fournette mixed with a solid defense that is back wreaking havoc on quarterbacks with pressure and sacks.

But,” news flash” – that’s the way they were going to win with Nick Foles in at QB, as well.

Further, Foles has been used to this situation the last couple of years in Philadelphia, where he was waiting for his opportunity as a backup. And, eventually, it came when Carson Wentz was injured at the end of each of the last two years. So, this is familiar territory for the veteran.

Again, Minshew could still falter and no one would blame Marrone and the team at that point for putting Foles back in.

However, if you take the rookie out, now and Foles is bad? Then, you’ve got everyone rightfully ripping you for messing with success.

There’s a great Axiom in present-day sports about free agency and trades: “Sometimes the best move is the one that you don’t make.”

For now, the Jaguars would be wise to heed that.

Jacksonville Jaguars

Jaguars hire former Redskins coach Gruden as OC

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Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

It didn’t take long for the Jaguars to come up with a new offensive coordinator and it will be a very familiar name to fans of the NFL and in specific, in Florida. Former Redskins coach and Bengals offensive coordinator Jay Gruden has been hired buy coach Doug Marrone to assume play-calling duties.

NFL Network insiders Tom Pelissero and Ian Rapoport had the news first on Tuesday night, that the Jags had settled on the Redskins coach who was fired during his sixth season back in October:

Gruden, the younger brother of Raiders coach Jon Gruden, was fired in October after the Skins 0-5 start and while in his sixth season in Washington. He mostly struggled for the Redskins to have success with a 35-49-1 overall record. However, they won the NFC East in Gruden’s second year (2015) with a 9-7 record, but were beaten at home in the Wildcard Weekend by the Green Bay Packers.

Gruden worked his way up to his first head coaching job after having been the offensive coordinator for Marvin Lewis for three seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals. There, he worked with quarterback Andy Dalton and spectacular WR A.J. Green and his final year (2013), the Bengals were 6th in overall offense and fifth in scoring.

The Jaguars had also reportedly interviewed former Giants head coach, Ben McAdoo, and had also been considering former Cowboys and Rams offensive coordinator, Scott Linehan, for their vacancy. Coach Doug Marrone fired first-year offensive coordinator John DeFilippo after just one season last week.

While the team termed it “mutually parting ways,” DeFilippo was quickly hired by the Chicago Bears last Wednesday, as a quarterback coach. And, obviously going from an NFL offensive coordinator job to a QB coach is not a lateral move.

Back to Jay Gruden. He is best known in our state for having been outstanding Arena Football League quarterback leading both the Tampa Bay Storm and the Orlando Predators franchises to Arena Bowl Championships.

Later his career Gruden was a player coach for the Orlando franchise, while also working during the NFL seasons in the fall as an offensive assistant under brother with the Buccaneers, including their 2002 Super Bowl win.

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Jacksonville Jaguars

Jaguars interviewing former Redskins coach Jay Gruden for OC

Florida Football Insiders

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Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

The Jaguars continue to look for a new offensive coordinator in an interesting name with Florida connections has emerged.

Fox Sports NFL Insider Mike Garafolo reported on Sunday that former Redskins head coach and longtime Arena Football League star player and coach in the Sunshine State, Jay Gruden is on their radar:

Gruden was fired in October after an 0-5 start and while in his sixth season in Washington. He mostly struggled for the Redskins to have success with a 35-49-1 overall record. However, they won the NFC East in Gruden’s second year (2015) with a 9-7 record, but we’re beaten at home in the Wildcard Weekend by the Green Bay Packers.

Gruden worked his way up to his first head coaching job after having been the offensive coordinator for Marvin Lewis for three seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals. There, he worked with quarterback Andy Dalton and spectacular WR A.J. Green and his final year (2013), the Bengals were 6th in overall offense and fifth in scoring.

The Jaguars have also reportedly interviewed former Giants head coach, Ben McAdoo, and are said to also be considering former Cowboys and Rams offensive coordinator, Scott Linehan, for their vacancy. Coach Doug Marrone fired first-year offensive coordinator John DeFilippo after just one season last week.

While the team termed it “mutually parting ways,” DeFilippo was quickly hired by the Chicago Bears Wednesday, as a quarterback coach. And, obviously going from an NFL offensive coordinator job to a QB coach is not a lateral move.

Jacksonville’s offense sputtered at times this past season, although it was handicapped when prized free agent quarterback Nick Foles was hurt in the first game of the season and missed 9 weeks with a fractured collarbone. Rookie sixth round pick, Gardner Minshew, was good at times in relief and helped Jacksonville win six games overall with his play.

Back to Jay Gruden. He is best known in our state for having been outstanding Arena Football League quarterback leading both the Tampa Bay Storm and the Orlando Predators franchises to Arena Bowl Championships.

Later his career Gruden was a player coach for the Orlando franchise, while also working during the NFL seasons in the fall as an offensive assistant under brother Jon Gruden with the Buccaneers.

Of course, the elder Gruden is now the coach of the Raiders again, and they are slated to move to Las Vegas for this fall. And, it’s entirely possible that Jay Gruden could be joining his brother with them, as well.

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