The Jaguars have been gearing up to part ways with general manager Gene Smith for weeks, and recent signs point to head coach Mike Mularkey also being out after just one defeat-filled year on the job. Mularkey was seen as a safe coaching choice last year, but owner Shahid Khan is thought to be looking to make a bolder, splashier move for a franchise in need of new energy and new direction.
On the coaching front, soon-to-be ex-Eagles coach Andy Reid and Alabama’s Nick Saban are two big names being floated, but both would come at a hefty cost, if they were even interested in the Jaguars. If Jacksonville swung for the fences and missed, Denver offensive coordinator Mike McCoy is a young head coaching candidate who has generated strong reviews for his work the past two seasons with both Tim Tebow and Peyton Manning. Getting the quarterback position fixed in Jacksonville is obviously a top priority, with Blaine Gabbert showing only flashes of production in his first two NFL seasons.
As for the general manager search, there’s a good probability that Jacksonville started by calling ex-Colts GM Bill Polian to gauge his potential interest. But Polian, given the late-career stage he’s in, is only thought to be open to certain potential general manager openings, where the length of commitment and size of the rebuilding job is not too massive. The Jaguars are not thought to be a team he’d consider.
Two young GM candidates to remember are San Francisco director of player personnel Tom Gamble, and Atlanta’s Caldwell. Gamble may have the inside track on the job, but Caldwell is also almost certain to be interviewed.