I just got done watching Jaguars owner Wayne Weaver defend his decision to retain Jack Del Rio as his head coach for at least one more season. Here are the highlights of what Weaver had to say to try and calm the fire of an angry fan base.
-Weaver has essentially stripped Del Rio of his ability to call the plays for the defense. To put it frankly, Del Rio’s defenses have been awful and this should have been done long ago. Mel Tucker, who has been defensive coordinator in Jacksonville for two years in title only, will get his shot to run the defense on game day next season.
-Weaver blamed the Jaguars current situation on a period of awful personnel decisions made when Shack Harris and Del Rio were in charge of the 53 man roster. It appears that this situation has improved over the past two seasons since Weaver stripped Del Rio of his control over the roster and fired Harris and gave control to Gene Smith.
-Weaver said it would be insane to “blow up” the current roster rebuilding process by firing the coach two years into it. Is it really insane if that coach is hindering the rebuilding process by not being a good coach? The Jaguars have a solid young nucleus of players, but I do not believe replacing their coach would be devastating to their growth.
-It appears that Weaver does not yet fully understand the financial impact that this decision may bring. Weaver spent some time talking about the continued growth of ticket sales, but I would not be surprised if ticket sales sagged this offseason with the news of Del Rio’s return.
-Weaver wants fans to “trust him.”
-It appears Del Rio’s job was saved by his players. There is no question that he has to full support of his players, but that is no surprise since he has built up a reputation as a players coach. Del Rio has been too soft on his players and it has shown over the past two years when the team has failed with the season on the line. This team needs a coach that will be firm with the players and hold them accountable for the mistakes they make on the field. This team will continue to struggle if Del Rio continues to insist on being the nice guy.
-Weaver took a playoffs or bust stance on the 2011 season. It appears if Del Rio wants a tenth season here in Jacksonville, he will have to find a way to get his team to the playoffs this season.
The next eight months will let us know whether or not the fans are buying what Weaver tried to sell them on Monday.