Source - Tom Coughlin is pushing back on the idea that his team’s offseason roster construction was flawed.
Appearing on 1010XL Tuesday morning to support the Tom Coughlin Jay Fund Foundation radiothon, the Jaguars’ executive vice president of football operations said he would “put the gloves on with anybody” who has a problem with how the Jaguars built their team after losing in last season’s AFC title game.
“A whistle, we’re in the Super Bowl,” Coughlin said, referring to linebacker Myles Jack being ruled down following a fumble recovery against New England in January. “And that’s my position, OK? So tell me everyone out there what they’re going to do in that circumstance about your football team?
“Aren’t you going to fill other pieces in and try to be as good as you can be? And we tried, didn’t we? Well, the nature of the game got us, and we’ll go back to the drawing board.” …
“Let’s face it: Our numbers are down all over the place,” Coughlin said. “Our sacks are way down. Our pressure is down. Our turnovers are huge, they’re out of sight. Our penalties. The way we behave on the field, I mean it’s ridiculous, some of the penalties.”
God help me, but I love Tom Coughlin. He’s such a throwback. Just an ornery, irascible old guy who’s tough as a Waffle House steak who gives no shits what anyone thinks. I’ve said before and I’ll say now that between his time at Boston College, Jacksonville and the Giants he was the best Big Game coach of all time, with an uncanny gift for pulling major upsets. From undefeated Notre Dame to the 1996 Broncos to the Patriots twice. And then, like now, he’s got a zero tolerance policy for anybody else’s nonsense. So when he came out of semi-retirement to run the Jags football operations, I figured he’d build a team that’s as mentally tough and disciplined as his past teams. But nope.
Here’s what he meant about the numbers being down:
–2017: The Jaguars had 55 sacks, 105 quarterback hits, a takeaway/giveaway of +10 and a 3rd best point differential of +149.
–2018: They’re on pace for 30 sacks, 81 QB hits, takeaway/giveaway of -11 and a point differential of -46.
–2017: They had 112 accepted penalties.
–2018: They’re on pace for 131 penalties.
Which must be making Coughlin’s life a living hell right now. He felt like he had his team built to win it all. They come close. He does all the evaluations, makes a few tweaks, feels like he’s done all the right things to set them up for this year. And what happens? The Jags spend the whole offseason being the swaggeriest team in the league. Jalen Ramsey didn’t see a microphone all year he didn’t spit a hot take opinion into about how inferior everybody else is. They beat the Patriots in their September Super Bowl and acted like they’d left the Pats on the ash heap of history. After the game one anonymous Jag was heard screaming “They fucking SUCK!” as they walked past the visitors locker room. And since then? Disaster.
They’ve gone 1-7. Ramsey transformed from a quote machine into a bot programmed to shrug and say he doesn’t know what’s wrong. Optimus Not Ready for Prime. The 2018 Jaguars are now in the Pantheon of Teams That Thought They Arrived Before Arriving. And they’re finding out that all those articles and all those headlines with the word “Brash” in them:
… are great when you back them up. The best thing next to actually winning a thing. But when you don’t, they just become what Mayor Menino of Boston used to call an Alcatraz around your neck. So good luck to Tom Coughlin as he tries to dig his franchise out this hole their egos dug, but my guess is he’s too old for this shit.