It is good that Tom Coughlin is back involved with an organization in the NFL. I know he is not a head coach, but for him to have his imprint as an executive is great to see because I think the NFL is all the better for it with Coughlin involved. It is even more symbolic that he goes back to the franchise that he helped build in the Jacksonville Jaguars. He was their inaugural head coach and coached the Jaguars from 1995-2002 and helped lead them to two AFC Championship games. He has roots in Jacksonville and also has sweat equity in the organization for his accomplishments in the past.
This is a different Tom Coughlin than the one that took over the expansion franchise in the mid-90’s. After all, he adjusted his coaching style with the Giants to remain as Giants Head Coach. His strict rules and his communication style were not working anymore and he reinvented himself as a coach and a communicator in order to remain as Giants coach. He brought about the leadership council and listened to ownership, family and his players to bring about the necessary change. It worked and the Giants went on to win Super Bowls in 2007 and 2011.
We know how it ended here in New York and the Giants needed a different voice to run their organization and they moved on and Coughlin stepped down. We know the passion still burned for competition for Coughlin as he interviewed with the 49’ers and Eagles last offseason and the Jaguars the offseason about their vacant head coaching positions. The Jaguars decided to make Doug Marrone their full-time head coach after he was named interim head coach when they fired Gus Bradley during the regular season.
Coughlin still wanted to compete and still wanted to work. So when Jaguars owner Shad Khan hired Coughlin last week to be the team’s executive vice president for football operations, it made sense. Coughlin is 70-years-old and maybe teams were a little hesitant to hire him because of age as their head coach. Unsure of the future and what tomorrow will bring. Jaguars GM David Caldwell will report to Coughlin and Coughlin is running an NFL franchise and rightfully so. Khan described the combo of Marrone and Coughlin as a “spectacular football staff” and both men discussed the importance of winning moving forward. Coughlin added, “What the hell else is there. Winning is what all of this is about.” It certainly is Tom, and that is why the Jaguars are lucky to have you.
Certain the Jaguars franchise will have to get used to being early to meetings or Coughlin time. It all part of the process in teaching a team and players what is means to be a professional. There is a certain way that you need to conduct and handle yourself and it all part of the process that equates to winning football games. The Jaguars are a young team, 38 of the 53 players on their active roster have 4 years of experience or less. They have a young quarterback in Blake Bortles who has all the talent in the world, but needs to learn how to become a winning signal caller. Overall, the Jags franchise needs to learn how to win again. After all, they went 14-48 during the nearly 4 seasons that Gus Bradley coached the team. Coughlin can certainly help in that learning process and I get that he is not the coach of the team, Marrone is. But his presence and his leadership is needed in Jacksonville. It worked in his first go around in Jacksonville and I am rooting for it to work again.