The Jaguars have fired coach Gus Bradley, the team announced Sunday. The news comes after the team's latest inexplicable loss, this time to the Texans, which dropped them to 2-12 on the season, and 14-48 during Bradley's three-plus-year tenure.
CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora says that he expects Doug Marrone, the assistant head coach/offensive line coach, to take over as interim coach although nothing official has been announced yet.
Owner Shad Khan released this statement on the team's website late Sunday afternoon:
"I thanked Gus Bradley today for his commitment to the Jacksonville Jaguars over the past four seasons. As anyone close to our team knows, Gus gave his staff and players literally everything he had. Our players competed for Gus and I know they have great respect for him, as do I.
"Gus also represented the Jaguars, the Jacksonville community and the NFL in nothing less than a first-class manner as our head coach. That counts for a lot. It is unfortunately evident that we must make a change. I thought it would be best to do it immediately after today's result so Gus can step away, relax and regroup with his family during the Christmas and holiday season.
"Dave Caldwell agreed and will now be charged with exploring all options to hire the best head coach possible to lead what I feel is an extremely talented team and reward a very loyal and patient fan base in Jacksonville."
Yep, you read that right: Khan canned Bradley now so Bradley can enjoy the Christmas holiday with his family.
Bradley arrived in Jacksonville after a successful stint as the Seahawks' defensive coordinator, but he was never able to replicate that success as a head coach. The Jags never won more than five games in a season under Bradley, and were regularly the among worst-ranked teams on both sides of the ball, according to Football Outsiders' metrics (in 2013, they ranked dead last in efficiency while going 4-12; in 2014, dead last while 3-13; in 2015, 25th while 5-11; through 14 games in 2016, 27th).
Bradley's defense had started to play better this season, however, after three years of lackluster play. They still weren't anywhere near an elite unit, however.
|2013||6,070 (27)||5.6 (23)||449 (28)||2.14 (25)||38.1 (26)||10.9 (28)|
|2014||5,932 (26)||5.5 (21)||412 (26)||1.90 (22)||36.3 (22)||1.5 (20)|
|2015||6,000 (24)||5.4 (21)||448 (31)||2.05 (26)||38.1 (26)||9.7 (26)|
|2016||4,113 (5)||5.0 (5)||338 (26)||2.07 (24)||41.7 (30)||-2.2 (15)|
It gets worse. Bradley put together by far the worst record among coaches with at least 50 games in the Super Bowl era:
It also gets more awkward:
Gus Bradley is returning to Jacksonville on the team charter tonight.— Michael DiRocco (@ESPNdirocco) December 18, 2016
Bradley is the second coach fired this season -- last week, the Rams finally parted ways with Jeff Fisher -- and now the Jaguars will look for his replacement. La Canfora reported earlier this month that the team was expected to reach out to Tom Coughlin, who won two Super Bowls with the Giants after serving as the first coach in Jaguars history. Jacksonville has also reportedly had interest in Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels.
Whoever it is, will have to decide whether embattled former first-rounder Blake Bortles is in the team's long-term plans, or if it's back to the franchise quarterback drawing board.