Urban Meyer's tenure with the Jacksonville Jaguars was one of the most disastrous runs in NFL coaching history. Meyer's reputation has taken a hit since his resignation. His reputation sunk further when Jayson Jenks and Mike Sando of The Athletic published an article detailing just how toxic Meyer's leadership was.
On Tuesday, Stephen A. Smith and Marcus Spears appeared on First Take to discuss the article. Spears said Urban Meyer wasn't ready for the change of coaching adult men versus college kids. Spears said:
“Number one, we all know that based on his responses to not getting on airplanes to go back home with his team, because the pressure had become too much. And he needed a break or reprieve. But also when he got hired. The things we heard from players in Jacksonville, and that's the big thing that everybody talks about when college coaches come out. You're dealing with grown men."
Spears continued by saying Urben Meyer was used to being a big fish in a small pond. In college, the coach has an enormous amount of power. In the NFL, that's not the case. Spears dissed Meyer by saying he didn't realize he was in a grown man's league. He said:
"And also some of those grown men’s paycheck is more than yours on those rosters. They also have credibility throughout the league before you come on as a head coach. The difference in college is ‘I run everything. I'm the head honcho, I can say what I want to say, do what I want to do, we’re in a market where we can hide things and some things will go under the radar.’ Urban Meyer didn't realize he was no longer at the University of Florida or he wasn't at Ohio State. He didn't realize he was in a grown man league."
To conclude, Spears spoke from experience, having played in the NFL. He said that whence a coach or fellow teammate loses respect in the locker room, the writing is on the wall for their carer. Spears said:
"And when grown men don't respect you as a head coach in the NFL? That's a wrap for you. And that's why when this season was going along, and the owner, Shad Khan, was talking about ‘what we will do, we’re going to take our time and really investigate this.’ It was already over. When you lose a locker room in NFL, and Stephen A. knows this as well as anybody because I've talked to him about it all the time. Once you lose the locker room as a player or coach? It’s over.”
Urban Meyer will never coach in the NFL again
In the NFL, it's usually impossible to never say never. But after reports emerged detailing how poorly Urban Meyer treated his players, it feels safe to say that no NFL team would take the risk of bringing Meyer back in as a head coach.
The Athletic wrote on Twitter that Meyer was so clueless about the NFL that he didn't know who Deebo Samuel or Aaron Donald was. It was evident that Urban Meyer was way over his head when he accepted the job.
Trevor Lawrence and the Jaguars will benefit going forward with former Super Bowl-winning head coach Doug Pederson. They'll look to move on from the disastrous rookie season Lawrence had to suffer through and hope for brighter days ahead.