The Jacksonville Jaguars are entrenched in their search for a new defensive coordinator. The process continued Sunday when Fox Sports reported that Jacksonville interviewed former Lions Head Coach Jim Schwartz.
In 2014, Schwartz held the defensive coordinator spot in Buffalo and is looking to return to the sidelines in 2016. He is currently part of the NFL’s catch committee and spent 2015 as a consultant in the NFL’s officiating department. Schwartz got the Lions to the playoffs in his third year and has always drawn attention as a capable coordinator in the league. Combine his passion for the game with his year off from on-field duties and you would have to think that he would be prime for the job at this point. He would give the Jaguars much needed experience in that capacity.
No timetable has been given for the Jaguars to fill the vacancy, but the Jaguars need to take their time and get it right. They have interviewed Dolphins interim coordinator Ken Anarumo and 36-year-old Marquand Manuel, along with Schwartz. The Jacksonville defense has been among the worst in the league for three straight years and there is no doubt that the choice head coach Gus Bradley and General Manager David Caldwell make with this hire is big, because their jobs depend on it. Owner Shad Khan gave Bradley a vote of confidence after the season, but he also was not shy about insisting that another season near the bottom of the league in defense, or any other category was not going to be tolerated.
While the Jaguars are focused on filling the defensive coordinator spot, it looks like one coach will be staying put… at least for now. Jaguars’ assistant head coach/offensive line coach Doug Marrone was passed on for the head coaching vacancies in the NFL. Marrone interviewed with the Tennessee Titans, Miami Dolphins, Philadelphia Eagles and NY Giants and the Cleveland Browns. He has now interviewed for eight vacancies in the last two seasons. Many teams may have been turned off by the fact that Marrone left the Buffalo Bills after one season as their head coach. He opted out, citing the pending organizational changes in Buffalo with the sale of the team.
There was also a report in the NY Daily News last January that was not kind to Marrone, which could still be playing into the difficulty he is having getting another job. Jaguars Head Coach Gus Bradley gave him a chance to rebuild his image when he brought him on prior to the 2015 season. It looks like the rebuilding will continue in 2016, which can only serve to benefit Jacksonville.