It has been 399 days since Shahid Khan’s Jacksonville Jaguars last tasted victory.
At 0-5 this season, the Jaguars are the NFL’s joint-worst team. But their 20-game losing streak makes them historically bad.
Only the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who lost the first 26 games of their existence from 1976-77, have been on a worse run in the Super Bowl era.
It has been 399 days since Shahid Khan’s (pictured) Jacksonville Jaguars last tasted victory
It was not supposed to be like this. Khan coaxed elite college coach Urban Meyer – his record was 187-32 – out of retirement in January for a first crack at the NFL.
‘This is a great day for Jacksonville and Jaguars fans everywhere,’ Jags and Fulham owner Khan gushed.
‘Urban Meyer is who we want and need, a leader, winner and champion who demands excellence and produces results.’
But Meyer’s short rein has been marked by missteps. In February he hired strength coach Chris Doyle, despite allegations of racist behaviour. The next day, Doyle resigned.
At 0-5 this season, the Jaguars are the NFL’s joint-worst team as they head to London next
Only the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who lost the first 26 games of their existence from 1976-77, have been on a worse run than the Jacksonville Jaguars in the NFL’s Super Bowl era
In September, a report claimed that Meyer’s ‘unhinged’ coaching was causing issues. He posted a peculiar social media post after defeat by the Denver Broncos. ‘Hang in there. We’re going to get better,’ it began.
After blowing a 14-0 first half lead, the Jags fell their fourth defeat in Cincinnati earlier this month. Meyer took the unusual step of remaining in Ohio and not flying back with his team to spend time with his grandchildren.
The next night recordings emerged of the 57-year-old with a younger woman dancing in his lap at his bar in Columbus – Urban Meyer’s Pint House.
‘Just stupid and so I explained everything that happened and owned it. Just stupid. Should not have myself in that kind of position,’ Meyer said.
It prompted another statement from Khan, this time terse. ‘I have addressed this matter with Urban. Specifics of our conversation will be held in confidence. What I will say is his conduct last weekend was inexcusable,’ he fumed. ‘Now, he must regain our trust and respect.’
Despite further reports emerging that Meyer has lost the locker room, quarterback Trevor Lawrence said all the right things on Friday.
Khan managed to coax elite college coach Urban Meyer (pictured) out of retirement in January
Trevor Lawrence said that he thinks Meyer has ‘done a good job handling the situation’ so far
‘I think he has done a good job of handling the situation. He has had conversations with the team and one on one and all of us. Just him being the same guy and coming to work, you know super hard worker. [He] really cares about this team and no-one can deny that, so we are in a good spot and we all respect him. We are just ready to go win some games.’
The presence of Lawrence, the No 1 overall pick of May’s draft, is something to give Jags fans hope.
While he has thrown eight interceptions this season, the 22-year-old has also tossed six touchdown passes, with an average of 229 yards a game.
The Jags rank 28th in scoring offense, averaging 18.6 points per game.
Lawrence has a 59.4 per cent pass completion rate with Jacksonville’s offense being carried by their ground game.
James Robinson is fourth in the NFL with 387 rushing yards, averaging 5.8 yards a carry.
Lawrence leads the NFL’s fifth-youngest team into their eighth game in London – and first away from Wembley, the stadium Khan tried to buy in 2018 – to face the Miami Dolphins at Tottenham on Sunday.
Lawrence has a 59.4 per cent pass completion rate with Jacksonville’s offense stuttering so far
James Robinson is fourth in the NFL with 387 rushing yards, averaging 5.8 yards a carry
No rookie quarterback has ever won in England (they are 0-6), and Clemson product Lawrence will renew his rivalry with college adversary Tua Tagovailoa after he has recovered from fractured ribs.
Lawrence took the Tigers to the National Championship twice, and secured the national title in 2018 at the expense of Tagovailoa’s Alabama Crimson Tide.
Lawrence was successful in college, unfathomably so. In his three years at Alabama he didn’t lose a regular season game.
His life in Jacksonville has not followed that trend, but the likeable Lawrence is adjusting to life in the pros.
‘Regardless of what happens this season I think we’re getting there and we’re really coming along and starting to click. I think we’re playing much better football.
‘But regardless of whatever happens these next 12 games, I’m planning on being in Jacksonville for a long time. So it’s really a big picture thing. I’m just going to keep getting better every week and I think this team will do the same.’